I cannot bear insincerity.
I hate it when people are only putting on a show. Stepping up onto the stage, smiling broadly with their perfect-white teeth, and they play their cool act. I prefer the honest indifference. I like the mispronounation of words and the mix-up sentences when one gets sleepy or lazy. I’m partial to the direct truth, even when the truth is not particularly flattering. What I cannot stand is the superficial smiles and ‘hows-are-yous’. It is the pretending to like-you or like-her which I hate. I guess you can say that I’m in favour of both vulnerability and authenticity.
I wish we could be our authentic selves constantly, and I have a lot of respect and admiration when people are vulnerable and honest with me and with each other. I’m a huge fan of these concepts at face-value.
However, on a deeper level, I don’t think that this is attainable.
We all recognise something is wrong in a superficial sense. We talk about the negatives of social media as in it can paint a pretty picture of life when life is not necessarily pretty. We all despise being ‘fake’. We all praise being ‘real’. But what does that look like?
The thing is to be vulnerable is to have yourself as a personality naked. The thing is to be authentic, you need to admit and show everything about yourself. It is easy to talk about being vulnerable and authentic when you’re thinking of how good and nice you are, but it is another thing to be vulnerable and authentic when you are defective and callous.
I’m often told by people that I’m an authentic and honest person. In other words, I’ve learned to not care about who I am and to tell people that. Now that’s a compliment and I’m flattered. However, if I’m being honest, I am not always honest. I am not always authentic. Because to be authentic would mean showing my doubts and struggles. However, it goes deeper than that. That would mean showing off my hate, showing off my anger, my bitterness, all of my characteristics that a decent human being would point to and say that’s wrong.
It is the part of me that cannot be justified. The part of me which cannot be a victim. You would not applaud me for my braveness then. The price of vulnerability and authenticity is to show off myself, the good as well as the bad; and I can’t do that primarily because of the bad. The price is too high.
If I am being honest, I will never be completely honest, not with myself and certainty not to you. However, that doesn’t mean that honesty is bad. If you are the kind of human being who wears their heart on their sleeve and still keeps on being open and honest to others even when they have been hurt, then well done. You keep on doing that. I just won’t be completely vulnerable and authentic with you ( but maybe that’s the same with you too).