Is it always smart to tell it the way it is? Would it be smarter to sugar coat something if you know that that is what people want to hear rather than the plain truth. If it does no one any harm it real seems like the smart thing to do.
When you are put in a situation where you are not sure if the true answer would be something that the listener can deal with then what is the point in actually saying it if it serves no additional purpose. Even if you believe that you want to have an open and honest conversation with that person is there really a merit in actually saying it the way it is at the risk of offending that person? Is the truth more important that the persons feelings?
As an idealistic teenager I used to believe that brutal honesty is what is always better. My dad probably has something to do with that method of thought. But over the years I am not so sure anymore. I feel brutal honesty is overrated. It is probably better to anticipate what the other person likes to hear and modify truth accordingly rather than coming out and saying it as it is. After all if it doesn’t hurt it only helps.