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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Is Honesty Always the Best Policy?

I love her, with all my heart, and if ever I k...Image via Wikipedia I was commenting elsewhere about my mom being killed by a drunk driver, and it got me thinking about various aspects of the case. One of the things that struck me was how on the one hand I was given total access to the police reports, witness accounts, coroner's report, photos, etc. (An off-duty officer witnessed the incident). On the other hand, I was told multiple times by multiple people, unsolicited, that my mother 'died instantly' and 'didn't suffer'.

The truth is, she died a horrific death and did NOT die instantly.

So, the question becomes, is it better to create a lie or to tell the truth? It ticked me off to no end that I was lied to. I never asked if my mom suffered, or if she died instantly, yet others decided to tell me that 'pretty little lie' despite some of them knowing I had copies of all the reports and photos. Maybe they thought I wouldn't look at any of it, or maybe it was just 'habit' for them to say those empty words to people who have lost a loved one.

I compartmentalize, so for me, lies upset me far more than truth. I can deal with truth - I can review it and work with it and get past it. Lies are another story. Trying to work past the lies frustrates me - I am a person who prefers to deal in truth - even when it hurts. I think lies do far more damage than the truth ever could, anyway.

So, let's supposed I was not the type to compartmentalize. I get told (unsolicited) that my mother didn't suffer, and died instantly. I feel relief and peace that she went quickly and peacefully. Then I go to court or read the reports - WHAM! Suddenly I am hit in the face with the harsh cold reality that she died horribly and not immediately. I would be shattered!

I now give the floor to you: where are you in the truth/lie issue? This isn't about right or wrong - this is just about how other people view it and handle it.

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