Brutal Honesty

I love candy coating.   It always makes everything sweeter, but I’ve never been a fan of candy coating feelings or words.   Brutal honesty has always been the best ticket in my book.  Of course, I never thought I would be forced to contend with it on the level of the past couple of weeks.

You can (or at least should) count on your family to be honest.   They love you (or at least should) and only want what’s best for you.   Right?   They’re not interested in embarrassing you (or at least shouldn’t be).   They’re not interested in making you feel bad (or at least shouldn’t).   Right?  Well, for the most part my family meets all four of the above criteria of a good and loving family.   Sometime; however, like this past week, they take the “honesty is the best policy” mantra to a whole new level.

I’m not interested in revealing which family members decided to tell me the truth about my life.   I’m afraid they may be picked on or called out.   Some of you who’ve already heard the story know which family members decided to bring reality home.   And, boy, does reality suck!

Last week, I had a few family members stop by my house for a little visit.   While standing in my kitchen, one family member took it upon themselves to be brutally honest about my appearance.

“You have a gut,” my family member said.

“Well, I had a baby,” I replied while looking down at my belly.   I’m my own worst critic so I’m well aware that before I got pregnant I had a pretty tight set of abs; however, I didn’t think my gut was that noticeable.

“You had that baby 8 months ago,” my family member replied.

“Well, I’m trying to get my body back,” I replied defensively.

“Have you tried sit ups?” my family member asked.   At that I just lowered my head and skulked away.

Fast forward a few days and I’m visiting family.   I prepared two chicken salad croissants for lunch.   Each croissant measures about 3 inches in length, so they are not very large.   As I’m sitting down to eat, another family member decides to pitch out a few “truths” and unfortunately I struck out at each one.

“You know you’re going to end up like your cousin if you continue to eat like that,” my family member pointed out.

“Don’t worry.  I’m not in danger of gaining 400 pounds.   I work out,” I replied defiantly before taking a bite of a croissant.

“Well, take it from me, once you put the weight on it’s hard to get it off and you haven’t exactly gotten your pre-pregnancy body back,” my family member said.   Thank you, Captain Obvious!

I looked down once again at my appearance and took another bite of my croissant as I started to wallow in my own self pity.

“And, I want you to know I respect you for being a stay at home mom,” my family member continued.  “But please don’t let yourself go like other stay at home moms.”

“What are you talking about?” I nearly yelled.

“Well, you just don’t take care of your appearance like you used to.   You’re not wearing make up and you’re letting your hair go natural and I have to say when it’s naturally curly it’s looking like you don’t brush it,” my family member replied while hammering the knife into my heart just a little bit harder.

So, I know that I don’t wear dresses daily and I’m not spending hours working on my hair and make up, but I have an absolutely wonderful son and  husband.  I have a child who doesn’t care if I decide to go sans make up.   He’s just happy that I read him his favorite books, play cars with him, and take him to the pool.   And I have a husband who loves me no matter what.   A man who still thinks I’m as sexy and beautiful today as I was the day he met me.   They don’t seem to be willing to criticize my appearance.

And while honesty may be the best policy, can you at least find a way to not rip a person apart with it?


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