This I Believe

Adrienne - Columbus, Georgia
Entered on December 12, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: integrity
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This I Believe

I believe in telling the truth, no matter what. Honesty is always the best policy. From many experiences growing up, I have learned the hard way that the truth is better than nothing. As my grandmother would say “when you tell a lie, you have to tell another to cover the one you told.” Throughout the years, I have always remembered this saying. For the most part, it has always held true. Throughout my teenage years, I have been dishonest with my parents about a lot of things. The situation that occurred most often was my parents telling me I could not go to a certain place. I would lie about where I was going and go to the place I really wanted to go to. When I would get home, I would have to lie about where I had been or who I was with. A couple of days later, the situation would come up again and I would have to remember the first lie I told to keep my story going. In the end, I figured it was too much trouble to keep up with lies. Once you start telling them, you cannot stop unless you tell the truth.

Dishonesty can ruin families and relationships. For each party involved, dishonesty can hurt deeply. I believe there is no such thing as “little white lies.” Being dishonest is being dishonest: there is no shortcut. However, I do believe that the degree of a person’s dishonesty determines their consequences or the hurt they cause themselves. People don not think about those they hurt when they tell one little lie. They do not realize the impression they have made on others. When someone lies to me, no matter the degree, that is the one thing I always remember about them. No matter their character or integrity, their dishonesty stands out. I made a vow to myself to always remain true to being honest. I feel as though I have already impacted enough lives through my dishonesty. I am sure these people will encounter others who hurt them but I do not want it to be me.

We often realize the damage we have caused after it is too late. I believe that dishonesty should not be added to the list of hurt we cause ourselves and others each and every day. Even if it is just a “little white lie” and the first one you have told all day, honesty is always the best policy. You never know who you are hurting in the process of being dishonest or how you will eventually hurt yourself. It took me a long time to gain my parents trust back. Even though we all fall short sometimes, they have found it in their hearts to forgive me. They tell me time and time again that other people in this world are not always that nice. Although this has not happened to me personally, I know people whose marriages and friendships they have maintained for years all be thrown away because of one persons dishonesty. Holding strong to my beliefs, I plan not to follow in the footsteps of others who harm people around them with dishonesty. I see it happen every single day. I also believe that honesty displays courage and character. It takes a lot for someone to come out and tell the truth in a hard situation. It is always very tempting to be dishonest. This is a temptation that my people, including myself, constantly fall victim to.

Throughout the years, I have learned from my own experiences and of those around me that dishonesty can destroy you. Everyday, we hurt people we love through deception and dishonesty. The “little white lies” count. They add up. I believe that honesty is always the best policy.