The XX Factor

Brutal Honesty in Relationships Is for the Birds

Amanda, I don’t think you can really make generalizations about all married people or the institution of companionate marriage from Elizabeth Weil’s excellent piece . As commenter ockeghem wrote in response to your post , “It said nothing about anyone’s marriage but Weil’s.” It was a singular account of one union, but one that confirmed a long-held belief of mine about relationships: Total honesty is for the birds. I don’t always want to know what my fiance is thinking at every second, and he doesn’t want to know everything I’m thinking, either. Weil and her husband re-hash a bunch of long-buried issues, and seem to find mostly pain, rather than revelation. This is not to say that we should keep Don Draperish secrets from our beloveds. I just never want to hear my future husband say about an ex-girlfriend, as Weil’s husband said to her about a past lover, “We had this completely psychologically sadistic thing that was incredibly disturbing to me … .”