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What you need to know:

  • Does being honest mean you have to be rude? Tell us what you think, by emailing us at readers@gulfnews.com.

Have you ever been asked how an outfit looks like and had to hold in an ‘honest’ opinion, just to avoid sounding rude? Is an honest opinion always necessary and does it have ot be blunt? Gulf News readers discuss.

For the best

Sometimes, being harsh is for the better

Just like every coin has two sides, so does every person have his or her own perspectives and opinions. Same is the journey between honesty and the way it’s portrayed. From my very own experience I find the world today very judgmental and quick in rating. Today, even your emotions are given a thumbs up or thumbs down without giving you a second chance to put ahead what exactly you intend to say or do. While you are still struggling finding ways to modify things you are already declared blunt or outspoken. Because you were honest, you said what others did not approve, you are deemed rude. I am a teacher and almost every other day, I come across situations where I need to handle certain students in a different way. I have never bothered about what others will think if it is for betterment. I don’t mind being rude if I know the end result going to be what I exactly wished for.

On the contrary, we can always avoid speaking out our minds and just stay out or else be ready to face the consequences and pay the price of being the honest you.

From Ms Anjum Hasan

Biology teacher based in Sharjah

Intent matters

Think about why you are saying something

I am not fond of lying to due to the community and social circles I have had as well as my moral values. So, lying was never an option. However, I have realised there is a very thin boundary as to what people consider rude or honest. I admit I have been both and I assumed that it was the honesty that hurt the people. With time and experience, I have come to realise these are indeed two separate things. You can be honest and not be rude, you may also realise that honesty is only required when necessary and when it may help people. For example, my best friend makes bad food, I’ll probably tell him to benefit him so he can improve, that too if he asked me to try the food. A co-worker not doing well at work, that isn’t my business even though I would love to end his or her suffering. Unless they ask for my help, it’s not my responsibility. I guess that’s how I have come to define the difference between the two.

From Mr Mohammad Yaseen

Computer science student based in Abu Dhabi

Social skills

There’s no need to be rude

I have heard countless times from people who hide behind labels such as ‘too honest’, ‘blunt’ and ‘straight forward’ to be extremely rude to others. It might just be me, but I don’t think those attributes mean that people have to be rude. You can easily be honest when you need to without being offensive. I think that part of having good social skills and high emotional intelligence is understanding when to not be ‘too’ honest and hurt people’s feelings.

Some people might say this is not honesty but I have personally refrained from giving comments that might be true but too harsh. I think people need to judge and screen what they say to others better when they talk. Next time your mind tells you to let a comment out, think about whether it is necessary and whether it is going to benefit the person you’re speaking to. If not, it might be best to keep it in.

From Ms Nida Gulzar

Student based in Sharjah

Poll results: Has someone been rude to you and said that they were just being honest?

Yes: 60%

No: 40%

Have your say: Do intentions play a big part in what is said?