Why is it so hard for people to commuincate openly and honestly?

Why do people have a hard time being honest about emotions? If you like someone why is it hard to tell them? Why is it difficult to express true emotions? Like if something was offensive? Or if someone made you feel something you are uncomfrtable with why is it better to hide it? Like when someone feels rejected why do some people fire back insults instead of just dealing with it honestly? What is this upperhand people keep talking about? How is this effective in doing any good?


Most Helpful Guy

  • >Why do people have a hard time being honest about emotions?

    We're not brought up to be honest about emotions, because with most interactions in life, you have to get along with people in spite of your emotions. There are times when you should be honest, but most of us aren't use to it. Men in particular are taught as small children not to focus on their emotions at all. Many people (men especially) can't even -describe- what they're feeling if they want to.

    >If you like someone why is it hard to tell them?

    Because its an awkward conversation, and scary, and they are worried about the outcome, so they avoid the unpleasant stress, and hope that the truth just magically works out.

    >Why is it difficult to express true emotions? Like if something was offensive? Or if someone made you feel something you are uncomfrtable with why is it better to hide it?

    For the reasons given above.

    >Like when someone feels rejected why do some people fire back insults instead of just dealing with it honestly?

    To cover up their wounded pride and make themselves feel better about it.

    >What is this upperhand people keep talking about?

    I'm not sure, but what I suspect you mean is that in many relationships, whoever cares more tends to give more and compromise more. A lot of things in a relationship hinge on 'one or both people have to compromise, or the relationship will end'. And if one person cares more then the other, they will do most of the compromising. In a lot of cases, both people might be willing to compromise, but if one hides the fact that they are attached and willing to compromise, the other person will do most of the compromising, benefiting the person who hid their feelings.

    >How is this effective in doing any good?

    I guess it can get you what you want inside a relationship. I suspect a better approach is to find someone where less compromise is required and they are simply happy doing whatever it is you want and appreciate whatever it is you do for them.


What Guys Said 16

  • Imo is it because most people are AFRAID to either show vulnerability, or AFRAID of "social ridicule" for not being excessively politically correct.

  • Well, we have odd definitions of rudeness and political-correctness.

    That is, instead of being direct and upfront about things, we're more focused on our "right to not be offended." Therefore, almost anything personal becomes an elephant in the room.

    For instance, let's say a fat girl asks if she is fat.

    Well, I mean, she IS fat. It's a verifiable medical condition.

    But if anyone tells her the truth, that she's fat, they are considered a hideous human being. And the normal response is "no, you're totally skinny." It's denial, or an outright lie.

    I would prefer to say "sure, you have extra weight, but you wear it well." Or "Sure, but it doesn't change the fact that you're beautiful."

    In other words, you tell her the TRUTH that she's overweight, but you try to cancel out the negative connotation. A harsh truth is more respectful than a sugar-coated lie.

    In the case of many of my guy friends, there's a different approach. You tell it like it is, and if someone gets offended by it, it's THEIR problem, so long as you didn't imply it's a bad thing. For instance, a friend of mine is HUGE. He's tall, beefy, and jiggly. When he asks, we tell him he's tall and big, and instead of getting offended, he takes pride in it, referring to himself as "big John".

    Knew a girl like this. She was training to be a chef. She was actually the one usually telling offensive fat jokes, and if people brought up her weight she said "I like it. It's my symbol of experience in the culinary arts. I guess you could call me a SEASONED VETERAN. haha."

    But off the fat subject. This pops up everywhere. For instance, for something to be sexually uncomfortable, it really depends on who is receiving it.

    For instance, we often say guys say the most raunchy sexual stuff. But in my experience, it hasn't been too one-sided. Girls get to say some pretty nasty things about men, and nobody flinches. But the moment a guy starts hitting on a girl, everyone is up in arms for such creepy behavior. It's why guys are becoming more and more reserved, and approaching less. It's to the point of walking a tightrope trying to come up with a compliment that can't be twisted into something offensive.

    So that's what's really holding us back. Many of us aren't afraid of our internal selves. What we're afraid of is how harshly people would judge us for expressing it.

  • 1. Insecurity

    2. Ego (Falsified)

    3. Dishonest persona

    4. Fear of rejection

    5. etc

    Why do people have a hard time being honest about emotions?

    could be insecurity, fear of rejection, false ego, dishonest personality etc

    If you like someone why is it hard to tell them?

    various reasons like immaturity, fear of rejection (this being foremost), no confidence in self etc

    Why is it difficult to express true emotions? Like if something was offensive? Or if someone made you feel something you are uncomfortable with why is it better to hide it? Like when someone feels rejected why do some people fire back insults instead of just dealing with it honestly?

    It's a individual trait. Someone like me as on date will make it a point to let people know what I think. However, in my early teens I wouldn't cause I was for one not confident of myself, I am even as on date not very sharp /. street smart with catching words or underlying meanings but I sure make it a point to lash back effectively at that. I don't however, go overboard hurling abuses etc, I just ensure a statement that either shuts them up or makes them go physical (and then they regret it lol)

    Those who fire back when rejected are those with conflicting emotions within them i.e. they think they are not good enough from the inside but keep a confident face to the world. Their ego (falsified) is hurt and they don't know how to deal with the rejection. For them it becomes an insult and hence, they show their true side in the form of uncontrolled abuses and insults.

    What is this upper hand people keep talking about? How is this effective in doing any good?

    I'll need some elaboration on the 'upper hand'

  • Well for me it has become harder and hared to communicate my emotions because they have been abused so many times and I have somehow become accustom to not sharing them anymore as much as I did.

    For example I find it harder and hared to even show a girl that I'm interested in her because I had been rejected so many times in the past and the rejection is not the problem sometimes I was rejected because I didn't know that they were playing some sort of mind games.

    As a result I have noticed that I'm becoming more and more closed up and unwilling to open up even to people that it would be good to.

    It's a shame really that in a world with infinite possibilities for communication we have become less able to communicate and more isolated.

  • Because people today are not socializing enough and become hooked on technology where they internalize themselves. Look at how many people can "open up" through text messages yet not even look other people in the face when they talk.

  • Fear of being judged. Plus, people loose interest, especially women when people are too straightforward with each other and there's no mystery. Sad but true.

  • Because they are uncomfortable expressing their emotions.

  • They don't want to be judged, challenged, or feel inferior because of their views.

  • usually someone is hung up on some issue with the other person/some behavior from them that makes them question their feelings towards them. If they were clear on that point due to the other person doing things the right way to open them up then it would push them over the edge to where they are comfortable with them, know they like them, and can say that. When you see troubling things it causes you to have reservations about the person to where you don't really know if you like them or not so you wait and see how it plays out...

    As to the rejection deal, well some people lead others on and toy with their emotions irresponsibly so it pisses people off. Other times during break ups there can be a lot of built up tension that just snaps over all the problems that existed, so sh*ts going to hit the fan.

  • My friend once asked me, "What problem does people have in calling a spade, a spade?" I replied unto her, "Well, that's one of the biggest problem of humanity!"

  • everyones so afraid of hurting the other persons feelings

  • Becaaause... now, where do I start..?

    Girls like guys who are cool, who are chill, who are funny & joking, who will NOT chase them or do lots of lovely-dovely stuff..

    ..'coz as soon as you'll show your interest, your "true feelings" oh my.. the girl will back off, ignore you, disappear - it's like they're waiting for the right time for you take down those walls, expose your vulnerable heart and f***in' stab it as hard as possible!

    ..and some more things:

    Manipulation. Who cares less got more power. In their hands will be your mental well-being, your mood, your self-esteem, your money, your dreams - your whole soul

    ..and they might abuse it, oh wait - they WILL abuse it

    So what's the point of showing weaknesses? 'Coz today to safely open-up to a girl you need to trust her more than you trust yourself

    • Hmmm... walls area huge turn off to me. Am I the only one? If someone were to trust me with their true feelings, no matter how embarrassing, I would never stomp on that and betray that trust. I can appreciate honesty for what it is.

    • Show All
    • Uh, I like to be chased? We wouldn't be together if he hadn't been daaaamn persistent! I barely entertained the idea of a second date because I didn't think he was what I wanted, and now we're engaged. So yes, girls like to be chased, it's an ego boost, makes us feel special. He was extremely motivated to date me, and if he hadn't been, we would most certainly not be the happy couple we are today.

    • Oh yeah, you ''certainly" don't like to be chased, of course I believe you!

      Can't you notice how extremely contradicting is your whole statement?

  • Cause you're afraid of rejection, and what's even worse than rejection is when the other person won't believe you about your feelings, and there is absolutely nothing you can do to prove it to them.

  • Because of social preconceived notions which will never allow people to act normally.

  • Hurt people sometimes hurt people and some hurt people have issues opening up and trusting others


What Girls Said 9

  • Fear of rejection makes it difficult for us to be honest with people. Plus, all of this technology is retarding our in person social skills. Go out to a restaraunt and notice how many are looking down at the phone in their lap instead of talking to the human being across the table from them. It's disgusting. Sorry for the rant lol. The main reason, I believe, that people have a hard time being honest, is simply fear of rejection.

  • You stole the words right out of my mouth! Seriously. I play fair in the dating world only to get stepped on by those who care less and thus have "more power." I want to project that I have more power somehow without being cold, so that the abusive/jerk types don't keep going after me.

    Guys with guilt-trip/manipulation issues will often take advantage of my kindness and try to get me to date them when I have no interest and say so. Why is it so hard to find a like-minded individual with egalitarian, honest, open values and lack of prejudice (not just race, but other issues)?

    • "Hi, this is what I feel/value" seems to translate to "I'm vulnerable."

  • when it comes to telling someone how I feel about them when it comes to romance, I could never ever tell that person I like him because I am scared of rejection like everybody else and also its like a loss of pride for some people to express their motions to someone as it might make them look needy, but when it comes to being totally honest with them in other things its really easy.. for example for me I am not scared in expressing my opinion, like I did last night when I really hurt the one I love by being so cold and harsh towards him especially when he needed me the most...now that was easy to do because I was angry..and today I wish I hadn't said those ugly words..

  • Gutlessness.

  • Sometime, people don't listen and it can be useless to repeat yourself if respect is not there. people also have fears.

  • i fear rejection...and I don't want to get laughed at by others

  • sometimes people are afriad of what happens if they tell the truth like what is if you tell a person you like him/her but he/she doesn't like you back

    then you are confronted with the hard bad truth and some people prefer to live in their dream world

    about a month ago I told a guy I like him well he didn't even respond but I prefered to take the risk and tell him because for me it would be worse if I always wonder what if...

  • I know from my own personal experiences, I have a hard time being open and honest about things. I avoid conflict, for me, it's just easier to be the flexible one and give in, than it is to challenge something the other person said or did. Because if I challenge, I get push back and it makes me look/feel bad.

    I can't even begin to tell you how wrong what I do is. Because it's certainly not good. I should be standing up and letting people know how I feel. I'm more than capable of communicating open and honestly. My problem is that I deal with a lot of immature people who can't have these kinds of communications. Anytime you try to talk to them, they take it personally and there is push back, even anger. As unfair as that is, it's been my past experience in life and it definitely has great effect on me today.

    My mom also taught me growing up that it's not polite to disagree with anyone. This is also wrong, but it's hard to undo all of this emotional crap that I learned growing up. It takes time to undo all of this stuff that I had ingrained into me. Other people probably have similar experiences.

    But I agree with you. We should all be open and honest about our emotions. I'm starting to unravel all the crap that was taught to me and try to undo it.

    I think my biggest problem is going to be getting over the fact that sometimes people might not like what I say, but I should realize that it's okay and everything will be fine after I say it. But even if they don't like it and stop talking to me it should be fine, because that's not healthy to be interacting with that person then.

    Currently, I want to be open and honest with my boyfriend. I love him and see a life for us together. But I am afraid to talk to him about it because I'm afraid that he won't feel the same way.

    I think the reason a lot of people have a hard time with honesty and open communication is because of their past experiences. It would be nice if it were simple, but unfortunately we humans are very complex creatures :)

  • Because people fear being judged and/or left.

    And, in the dating world, everyone is taught to pretend they don't care. It's silly.