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comment by _refugee_
_refugee_  ·  1777 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: A Next-Gen Social Network

    I do believe you can only truly know someone when you get the full picture

There isn't a single person in my life who has the "full picture" of my existence. It's something I've thought about before: my life is like a pie or a pizza or a pie graph. Everyone gets a slice. Some people get bigger slices, some people get overlapping slices, some people get just a little. But no one gets it all. I guess in that case no one truly knows me - by your definition - but I'm hard put to say if that is a bad thing.

b_b  ·  1777 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I know the feeling. I've always lived that way, as well. Part of it is that I spend my time divided between nerds and jocks, like I'm stuck in an 80s movie. I try to hide my jock side from my nerd friends and rarely reveal my nerdy side to my jock friends. It's not dishonest; it's simply not mixing interests to disinterested people.

Revealing the whole picture is not so easy when context often dictates the parts to be revealed. One thing that I'm finding refreshing about my fiancee is that I don't find it difficult to not wear a zillion masks. That is, I don't feel like any side of me is less interesting or more offensive than any other. It's a remarkably good feeling, frankly, and not something I've ever really felt with any significant other. That said, "the full picture" still may not be feasible, given that no one can crawl inside anyone else's head. A little faith is necessary.

veen  ·  1777 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Well, it is not physically possible to fully understand someone, as you can never know every memory and influence on someone. People are just too complex to fully understand them. I did mean something more along the lines of your description of not-wearing-masks.

The only reasons I can think of for fully knowing someone, is to appreciate them and to communicate with them better. Those two factors don't necessarily require you to know everything about someone. A generous amount will do.

Maybe it's better to remove the past from the equation. The full picture I seek in people is the unrestrained existence of a person. The way they act (or more literally, how they don't act but are) around me, without masks. So let me rephrase: I think I only truly know someone when they are comfortable enough to show their unmasked self, which I am familiar with. Just like you and your SO. I am grateful to have people around me who fit that criteria. Circles of friends where I can just be my true self. I feel like I have the full picture of those people, as I understand how they think because I've had plenty of conversations with their unmasked self.

_refugee_, isn't that truly knowing someone? Pursuing perfectly knowing someone is futile, after all.

_refugee_  ·  1777 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The not-wearing-masks bit feel more clear. I have always viewed it more of a matter of modulating one's personality to fit the appropriate occasion than necessarily wearing a mask, though. There are times you are truly wearing a mask - when you are not presenting yourself truly at all - and other times you are simply a less (something) version of you - less exuberant, less foul-mouthed, less inebriated, whatever.

I think we are different people. Who I am to my parents isn't who I'd be to a partner and it doesn't necessarily have to do with wearing a mask.

I certainly have friends I can be very weird around and I appreciate that and they are my favorite friends. I get that idea of "not being constrained." But who you are has as much to do with your ability to modulate your personality (otherwise you become obnoxious in the wrong situation) as who you are when you don't modulate it. Are you unable to control your emotions? Do you control them too much? Do you sometimes rage like Alec Baldwin or do you react by not reacting?

I don't know. Just theories.