Faking politeness

We all do it now and again. We say, “that’s okay” when we are burning up inside. We leave a voice mail and say we were sorry to miss them but we really weren’t all that sorry and we are glad they didn’t pick up when we called them back. Sometimes we fake politeness because we know what it in our heart is not good and so we are act into politeness. Other times we merely want to avoid more problems and so wish to make them go away by faking peace.

Apparently there are some advances in technology now that can help you be better fakers. There are ways to call someone and get into their voice mail without the phone ringing–designed to make it seem like we were sorry we only got their voice mail but in actuality that is all was wanted. NPR ran a story on this topic. They also described some ways to either pre-arrange a computer to call your cell to get out of a meeting or using pre-recorded sounds (baby crying, dog barking, doorbell, etc.) to end phone conversations you want to get out of.

So, is it wrong to fake politeness? what is the difference between being nice to someone who is a pain or who causes you problems and being polite but not meaning it. I would suggest that when we make it seem we were caring but weren’t (either in our heart or to others) then that counts as faking and isn’t good for the soul.


Filed under Communication, conflicts, Relationships

3 responses to “Faking politeness

  1. sherrieh

    I totally agree with you. It is important for people to be honorable, honest and truthful in all their thoughts words and deeds. Kudos to you! We need more people to be honest instead of playing head games. I too write about love and relationships, how to strengthen great loving relationships. Visit my blog at http://www.sherrieh.wordpress.com.

  2. Amy

    I greatly dislike leaving voice mail messages, unless I’m telemarketing for McCain or I have thought of something hilarious to say. 🙂

    I fake politeness all the time, but mostly because I don’t feel like being nice or telling you how I really feel. I have a friend who constantly stands me up. She’s fun when she’s around, but she’s a troubled girl. She makes up excuses not to answer her phone and all kinds of silly stuff. I’m supposed to be OK with that, but I’m not. I told her that and she just made more excuses causing me to be less and less OK. We arrived nowhere because she was unwilling to admit that arriving at someone’s apartment two hours late without calling or making plans with someone and not showing up was not a problem. So I faked being appeased and went on with my day.

    I’m trying to be more authentic, so faking it is something I’m trying to avoid. Plus, there’s a certain peace in being tactfully honest in a loving and God-honoring way. 🙂

  3. Scott Knapp, MS

    I think there’s something to be said in favor of wise diplomacy…reserving the “honest truth” for a time more prudent and effective. Perhaps for a time I can present as polite for purposes which best serve God and others, which are not self-protective (I must do this in therapy all the time with troubled kids), and let wisdom and the Spirit guide when I choose to speak otherwise. Until sin is dealt a death blow, I will always have only a few with which I can more openly “be myself”, and only One with Whom I can be entirely transparent.

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