Knowing

“What happens in houses behind closed doors…”

– Miss Maudie, To Kill A Mockingbird

What do you ever really know about a person? Seriously, when you think about it. You think you know everything about your best friend, but surely that’s a naive thought. Everyone has secrets, some bigger than others. There’s stuff you’ll never tell your friends, unintentionally perhaps, but there’s always a reason.

Then there’s the things you don’t tell family members, that only your friends know. I guess all this leads to the question, are you the only person who truly knows yourself? Even at that, you need to ask yourself alot of questions and do some searching before you’ll ever begin to know yourself.

The other day someone made a comment about a family member of mine, which may have been a little accurate on the surface, but it made me laugh. It made me laugh at the person’s naivety for making a judgement about a person they didn’t know at all. It was also quite a hypocritical comment, but that’s for another day. I know we’re all prejudiced and judgmental, but I realised how you can never think you know someone. How do you know that someone’s private life isn’t completely different to the facade they put on for the world? Not necessarily a bad thing. Some secrets have to stay secret, and an outer veneer is often the only way to protect that information from the world.

You look at a person; you think you know them, and to a large extent, you do. What’s more interesting though, is what you don’t. What exactly is that person hiding? That friend who seems so strong, is there a reason they seem so knowledgeable about life? That relation who snaps at everything, everyone; what’s up there?

I think we need to be a bit more tolerant of people. To be honest, if I ever write that post on hypocrisy, I have a feeling I might link back to this. I’m not a tolerant person, and yet here I am, asking others to be tolerant. Ironic. How can you blame others though, for just trying to deal with their own lives, their own secrets…

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