Why Honesty Is Important In a Friendship
Friendship is a connection between two or more people who share common views and who find each other’s company rewarding. It is a mutually beneficial union that is cultivated through trust and which becomes finer and deeper with time. Friendship can sprout even in the most unlikely of situations, and between the most unlikely individuals. One of the key aspects that strengthen friendship is honesty, a feature that this paper centers on and expounds upon.
Friendship involves friends making commitments to each other. It entails two people, whether strangers or acquaintances, developing a ‘liking’ for one another. It is often said that unless friendship is inculcated in families, the family members cannot stick together. Cousins, brothers, and sisters must put in extra effort to inculcate friendship for their family ties to grow strong. Apart from trusting one another, friends need to be open, sincere, and honest to one another.
Honesty must exist for friendship to thrive. A friend who is transparent and hides nothing is a good friend. He has a good motive and can take the friendship to a higher level. If one party in a friendship discovers that the other has cheated him, or is hiding vital information, that would likely mark the beginning of the collapse of the companionship. Cheating a friend implies that one is not interested in his or her mutual wellbeing and is not the best way to handle a person who is supposed to be a confidant. A friend is someone whom you can tell anything, you can share any and every piece of information in your life. A friend is more than just a brother or sister, he or she represents an important part of one’s life and it makes one complete.
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The saying that honesty is the best policy applies universally to human life. When an individual is faced with adverse situations, he can only look to his friends for advice and assistance. Honesty is one of the virtues that make a person stand out. It is a prerequisite to transparency and accountability. A dishonest person can easily take advantage of a friend for personal gain. Consequently, a dishonest friend is more lethal than an enemy that one already knows. If for instance, Peter and Albert are friends and it happens that Peter is dishonest, he can use Albert’s secrets to bring Albert down. Such friendship is poisonous, ambitious, and deemed to fail. It is better to have one true and honest friend than having many dishonest ones.
Human beings are prone to mistakes and failure. However, even where one has made a mistake or put the friendship in jeopardy, showing sincerity and making an effort to restore the relationship can go a long way in maintaining the friendship. If for instance, I realized that my friend has said something against me or has taken an action that could jeopardize our friendship, I’m more likely to forgive him if he came forward and told me the truth. If he is honest, explains his perspective and makes a genuine effort to mend any possible adverse consequences I will find him to be a sincere friend. However, if he makes a grave mistake and still denies, I will likely end the friendship immediately as that would no longer be a friend but an adversary.
It is often easier to end a friendship that it is to forge one. Friendship requires cultivation, commitment and the desire to contribute to the wellbeing of each party. Honesty is thus in the middle of friendship. A friendship not built on trust, honesty, and sincerity is sure to collapse sooner or later. A friend who proves to be indeed only when in need is clearly not one.