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Is Honesty Really the Best Policy?

I answer any and every question I receive honestly and to the best of my ability.


I've come to the unfortunate conclusion that if you want to manifest real change in the world, then you cannot be a pure-honest individual. By pure-honest, I mean someone who is honest to the detriment of themselves and their own ambitions. Now, it would be natural to question why you would avoid lying if it meant it would avoid harm for yourself, and I have been exploring that notion for quite some time and would like to explore it openly today; I will say immediately, however, that pure-honesty does not win social wars in any capacity and if that is your goal then do not strive to be an honest individual in the current social climate.

Torture Leads to Honesty

As I so often do I'm going to be using myself as the example, only this time it will be for pure-honesty. If you've been following my articles, especially the ones that go into detail about the abuse I suffered growing up, then you should already be able to see where I'm going in this section. For those of you who have not, I was severely abused as a child and this led to me developing a wide range of disorders and quirks that don't make sense to others around me without my explanation.

Due to suffering through severe abuse, I developed a strange disorder that I do not know the name of in which I am able to lie when it carries no real weight, but I am unable to lie when it would avoid a very unpleasant outcome for myself. Take for example if I am participating in a conversation about my opinions on religion and it would suit me best to just tell everyone that I totally support their religion and all the texts that come with it, I can't do it because lying like that causes me severe paranoia and anxiety almost as if I would be beaten like my mother used to beat me if I was caught lying; though my mother beat me even when I told the truth.

This cycle of being abused before being caught lying at a young age, then being abused when caught in a lie, and further being abused for telling the truth when it wasn't necessary has made lying to avoid detrimental effects nearly impossible. Like when I had "sneaked out" without anyone knowing and still I told my parents I did it out of paranoid fear of what would happen "when" they found out, and they turned off all electricity to my room for multiple days and took away all forms of entertainment all the while committing further acts of abuse on top of it.

So, why don't I just lie and deal with the consequences my own mind makes me endure?


Honesty Is the Weapon of a Caged Soul

The only explanation I have found as to the reason I tell the truth to my own detriment is that I turned my inability to lie into a weapon for my own protection. Where I am unable to lie, I sharpen the truth into a blade made of words I use to defend myself against the onslaught of lies and cruelty that surround me. I do not raise my weapon against those who would not seek to hurt me, ever, but that doesn't mean the people who seek to hurt me don't view themselves as the victims while they strike me.

My cage was made by those who would see me tortured, helpless, defenseless, and bending to their every whim, all the while they painted the image that I was the one giving them no choice but to do it to me and that they were in fact my victims, much like in organized religion when people seek to point out abuses and the lies used to hide them. The only defense in such a scenario is raising the blade of truth and smashing it upon their armor of lies as hard as I could. Armor made of lies is quite strong, and truth wielded by a single person is a weak blade at best.

Armor made of lies is quite strong, and truth wielded by a single person is a weak blade at best.

— Kyler J. Falk

Truth Is a Rusty Blade, Lies Are Nukes

I cannot stand the phrase, "Honesty is the best policy," because more often than not the truth has acted more like a rusty blade standing in the face of lies with the power of a nuclear blast in my life. Yet, I still do not break away from honesty, and my honesty was detrimental to my father and myself together once. Funny enough, my abusive father decided to report my mother for her abuses to the O.C. Sheriff, in conjunction with my own report, and that honesty backfired in our faces at the behest of my mother's lies.

It has been so long that I cannot recall the specifics of what was reported, but I know my mother had hit me in the eye with the butt of a landline telephone, which resulted in a big bruise under my eye and serious swelling when I attempted to call my dad to rescue me as she screamed at me. I had been arrested the previous night for sneaking out to see my girlfriend after curfew and getting caught carrying a switchblade for protection, and she was still screaming at and hitting me for that occurrence the next day as she had done in the car when she came to pick me up the night before.

My mother, father, and myself had to go down to the police station to figure out how to deal with my punishment under the law and during that time I felt it would be a good opportunity to report my mom, as did my father. It was a female officer overseeing the happenings within the station interrogation room and we reported everything we could muster about my mom. The officer seemed skeptical and dismissive the entire time as she refused to even take notes on our reports. My mother somehow convinced the officer she was the victim in the situation, and the officer told us never to lie to the police again just because of marital and revenge issues.

I bet had I exaggerated the already gut-wrenching claims into heart-tearing lies as my mother did, my little brother wouldn't currently be suffering under her sadistic reign. But, as I've come to find, you can't win social wars with honesty.


Honesty With the Self, for All

Coming to the end of this spiel, I guess all I really want to say is that I would like to see more pure-honest individuals in the world who are that way naturally rather than a product of abuse. It breaks my heart to see horrendous occurrences hidden behind the power of lies, especially when those lies would never hold any power in a world where individuals are honest with themselves. Had anyone in my life been honest with me, those around me, themselves, or just in general then I would not have had to suffer for as long as I did. I would not still be fighting my family for the justice I deserve, and the justice that my abused brothers deserve.

So I guess, if not for me then for yourself, let's make honesty into a tool that can end these ongoing social wars. If you can't first be honest with yourself, then you cannot expect anyone to be honest with you. Do not seek to hurt anyone with your honesty in lieu of lying, instead seek to heal the traumas that caused them to hurt you through seeking the truth behind them. If we all seek the truth from one another, and in turn offer nothing but the truth, then we would see the end of many horrible happenings in the world.


Kyler J Falk (author) from California on July 07, 2021:

Unfortunately my brothers are suffering, present tense, and no amount of fight for justice is changing that. One is too young, too traumatized to even speak on his behalf due to the abuse, and the other is so dependent on his abusers that he has developed Stockholm Syndrome and runs to their defense to protect his own unhealthy situation.

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Yes, though, I will never repeat the egregious, willful mistakes that those who raised me continue to make. I will fight every second of every day to help those who are suffering in the same situations I faced as well. The worst part was being alone, having no one, not even the law believe me; no one should ever know such helplessness.

Thanks for reading!

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on July 07, 2021:

It is heartbreaking that you suffered from so much abuse as a child, and that your brothers also suffered. In a perfect world, that would never happen. You are now in a position to make sure that never happens going forward. Be strong and stay safe.

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on July 07, 2021:

I appreciate it, Brenda, and I wish that honesty were the best policy as well. Unfortunately, the world simply does not function in such a way where pure-honesty is rewarded consistently, but it is punished without fail regularly. It's also impossible to be purely honest inside of minds that interpret everything subjectively, because, "what is normal for the spider is chaos for the fly."

I most often find that statement to be true with social issues, the issues people are most vocal about, and honesty from people can be more akin to a brutal, intentional clubbing that the assailant sees as nothing more than harsh truth. When is the truth more important than a white lie, and when is a white lie more damaging than brutal truths? A question for those philosophers who take the time to measure actions before they are taken, and lessons for others to learn from after a period of silence perhaps.

Thanks for reading!

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on July 06, 2021:


This is truly breaks my heart that you endured such abuse by those who were supposed to take care of you & love you.

I am one of those thst say honesty is the best policy.

Although sometimes the truth hurts others.

I do wish people would truly listen to others when they are being honest and try to understand each other without the pain that causes someone to start lying again.

I know I've not always been the best to listen to others & I also hide my own feelings.

In general, people lie. People get hurt. Our lives are never the same.

I so want a world where no one can lie, but that's near impossible in this day and age.

Sending you hugs of comfort. You have definitely struggled & survived.

I believe you probably are a stronger and more compassionate person than most.

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on July 06, 2021:

No, not unless you want to, I was just letting you know I don't even really recall what this article was about. I figured I'd just clarify what my feelings on honesty are as it relates to what I think this article was about.

When I first started out here on HP I was going through a rough time, and I've improved my quality by quite a lot since then. I've also evolved my opinions, and continue to do so since I wrote this rant piece.

"Let's look forward together," I suppose is the underlying sentiment.

Misbah Sheikh from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on July 06, 2021:

Do I have to say something in return now. Seriously, I don't know.

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on July 06, 2021:

I wrote this quite some time ago, and as you can see I wrote it in walls of text. I don't want to read it again to understand what I was saying, but I think just from the choice of topic I can recall what I was trying to say.

Truth, honesty, these are ideals that rarely resonate with reality. In the game of power it does not pay to be honest with the world around you, and only those who are able separate themselves from their conscience can truly change the world in the long-term. This part of reality is a facet I have a distaste for, and I wish it would change.

If honesty with the world were not unattractive, the world would be a better place, and many people who are honest with themselves fail to realize this aspect. I don't know, maybe I had some other point in there as well. Either way, it was just a rant, lmao!

Misbah Sheikh from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on July 06, 2021:

Kyler, I've read it. I honestly don't know what to say, but I agree with your last paragraph. I know a lot of individuals who have been through similar experiences, but don't you think that going through terrible periods in our lives helps us to be stronger? Staying honest with ourselves is something that's important.

Sending Blessings to you, dear friend

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 16, 2020:

Thank you for the compliments and for reading, Dora!

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on March 15, 2020:

I admire your effort to deal with this situation, and it seems that you are doing well and have come to a very sensible conclusion. Be in control, going forward!

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 15, 2020:

Your abrupt change in tone is jolting but I'll take it at face value and say that this is truly a wonderful community full of amazing individuals. Their warmth and ever-positive demeanor has brought a lot of light into my dark days, and I'm very happy we stumbled upon one another.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on March 15, 2020:

This is what I am so jazzed about here at HP. People reaching out to people. Who cares about the politics and admin here. Kyler, latch on to these great folks.

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 15, 2020:

Thank you, Manatita, your wise and kind words are always valued. Much love to you and yours as well.

Mitara N from South Africa on March 15, 2020:

I couldn't of said it better, Paula. I am in full agreement, admiration and respect to your words.

manatita44 from london on March 15, 2020:

My empathies, Bro.

You seem to be a soul that has its own struggles like most of us. I won't say that you"re doing badly. We have circumstances or experiences before us and we act as best we can.

This theatre of life is ours to play and the actors are there for a purpose. We do what we can and hope to move on, learning all the time from the Producer.

From my standpoint, you are not doing too badly. In fact, all things considered, you're doing ok. I like you take on honesty. Do what feels right for Kyler, while still trying to maintain your joy.

Much Love this Sunday.

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 14, 2020:

@Eric: Yes, the fact you are not a lawyer is quite apparent and thus your misrepresentation of the law as it concerns my articles is unnecessary. I will say, however, it is appreciated that you have the gumption to question victims. Continue to do so. No story should ever go without question, lest it be hiding an ugly truth, just like the same stories that saw me abused without recourse.

@Paula: I sent you a communication via email, in case you see this before you send me one.

Suzie from Carson City on March 14, 2020:

Yes,of course,Kyler.I fully agree with you about detailing in private. This is precisely why I suggested we email. I will go to your HP mail now, in order to at least give you my email. Form there, I will await your communication when it's convenient for you. Be calm, my friend. Your health & thirst for happiness is much closer than you may think;. You're doing exactly what you should be doing in an effort to sort things out within. From the inside out, you will be become whole & find comfort. Paula

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on March 14, 2020:

Excuse me for offending either of your sensibilities. Defamation is saying something really bad or within a set of bad about someone. The truth of the matter asserted is simply a defense. Saying a preacher acted in adultry and another messed with kids in some way is defamation. A mother can sue an adult child for defamation, no privilege there at all.

I ain't a stinking lawyer so this is not advice. But HP might have an issue with defamation. You see they are a publisher. Publishers are the ones who put it out there. They are editors, editors approve the statements. Malice is assumed.

Paula is immune except if she republishes this anywhere.

Like I said I am not a lawyer so I am just saying....

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 14, 2020:

@Eric: Sorry, I don't take part in anything that is illegal and would never post anything that is not the truth. Should anyone wish to take anything I write to court then I'd gladly meet them there, plenty of witnesses who'd back up my statements as more than fact all the while offering their own statements. Not to mention the vast piles of physical evidence in the form of reports, pictures, and videos of most of my claims. I'll do as I see fit when I see fit to do so, especially as it concerns my writing. Thanks for the input.

@Paula: There are things that would be better discussed in private, such as my living situation and all that goes along with it. As for my mother and communicating with her I have confronted her a multitude of times, even as recently as two days ago from the time I'm typing this comment, and not a single member of my family will acknowledge any wrongdoing. The last time I was given a real response they blamed me for the abuse I endured, told me nothing happened the way I remember it, and that they were free of any blame. You may email me any time you would like and I will respond.

Suzie from Carson City on March 14, 2020:

Eric......I'm afraid you may have seriously misinterpreted my comment to Kyler. In no way did I suggest to him not to write of his chosen topic nor would I ever discourage him to write anything he feels the need to share.

What "someone's mother" are you referring to, Eric? Kyler is speaking of his OWN mother, who, by the way, does not deserve the title of "mother."

IMO, Kyler has every right and more than ample reason to write of his own childhood as numerous authors have done forever.

Like I said, I believe you have misconstrued my communication to Kyler. He has "defamed NO ONE." SHE did that to herself.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on March 14, 2020:

Kyler in follow up to Paula. It probably is not all that good for you to be doing this publicly. Honesty to a grossness is still honest but it is also rather gross, if you get my drift.

I think I read a seriously libelous comment from you about Margarita something church. Your personal truth is not a truth in defense of defamation. Somebody just seriously defamed someone's mother. Careful.

Suzie from Carson City on March 14, 2020:

Kyler, I can only hope you will not be offended if I ask you some questions of serious concerns I have at the moment. Certainly, you are free to tell me you prefer not to answer and I would understand.

If you have mentioned your age, I'm sorry I don't recall.

How long has it been since you left your disastrous home situation behind and went on your own? Have you maintained any contact at all with your mother over this time that you've been away?

I'm asking because if your mother has not assumed responsibility for her egregious behavior & seemingly total lack of any parenting skills whatsoever, it would not be beneficial to you in the least to have any interaction with her at all.

I'd like to send you my personal email address via our HubPages mail delivery service if you don't mind. Let me know how you feel about this. Peace, Kyler.......Paula

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 14, 2020:

Thank you, Mitara, your ongoing encouragement and reassurances mean the world to me. It is hard to be a child from a broken home, and even harder to leave that broken home in the past. I'll get there, step by step, and every little bit of kindness you show goes such a long way. Never change!

Mitara N from South Africa on March 14, 2020:

Not for a second does it seem jumbled or uninspiring. When your thoughts are overwhelming the writing process, you automatically find the flow.

It's unfortunate to experience hardship to that extreme, but to go on trying to find justification for their actions, towards their child or any human being from what you mentioned. They would need to explain their thought process.

To be honest I don't think even they understood the reason for such horrendous reactions. Nevertheless it was not fair to take it out on anyone, especially those considered near and dear.

Its awful, to hear that the same history is repeating itself with your little brother.

As a parent its a given, to nurture, to build a good confident foundation, and safety net for your children as well as anyone else's child.

I still believe, you should always be honest with yourself, never change for anyone else. Never disrupt what makes you.

Don't give up, like I mentioned in your other articles. With every problem you have accompanied solutions. Though it's hard to come to terms with the past, you are making great leaps and bounds for the present and trust the same for the future.

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 14, 2020:

It isn't so terrible that they wish these things didn't happen and it is hard to hear them, we all feel the same, the biggest issue is that they put off due diligence for word of mouth and due to negligence the damage is still ongoing. I'm pondering writing about my egregious experience with APS and CPS, but I'm not sure I'm ready to relive those tortures and expose their evil yet.

Thank you for reading and for the input, RoadMonkey.

RoadMonkey on March 14, 2020:

That is just terrible that you had to suffer this and that your younger brother is STILL suffering it. I think it's the number of lies that social workers and police hear that means they do not recognise the truth when they hear it, as well as their want or desire NOT to hear about something (mothers abusing) that they do not wish to hear.

Kyler J Falk (author) from California on March 14, 2020:

Thank you for the compliments, Lorna, this topic meant a lot to me and I was worried it seemed a bit jumbled or uninspired. It is always nice to know that I continue to be my harshest critic.

Lorna Lamon on March 14, 2020:

This is a powerful piece Kyler which highlights the detrimental effects of severe abuse. I believe that in your case this was a protective mechanism due to the severe abuse you suffered over a long period of time. I have seen this in clients who suffer with PTSD from not only war trauma but severe mental and physical abuse. Being honest with ourselves, is the first step - the rest is up to us. A valid and thought provoking article.

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