I Have No Obligation to Edit the Ugly Truth

I process in two ways: by reading and by writing.

In reading I sometimes resonate partially or substantially with what another has written in a way that I begin to process what I have not begun to before.
However, insofar as complex, slightly painful or open-ended situations are concerned I think only with a pen in my hand. The problem arises in that I tend not to want to make other characters appear as bad as they truly were, editing their behavior or even their characters because I was raised not to say (write) mean things about people, meaning I edit the truth and thus take on more of the fault than I deserve and remember these individuals as truly better characters than they were.

I’m learning to give myself credit that I’m due, both good and bad and in appropriate measure only and the same for all others involved. Anne Lamott tweeted a few months ago, “You own everything that has happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.”

If you *are* one of those people, consider yourself on notice.


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