So now I’ve transferred most of filthy smoking habit of 20+ per day to under 5 and no longer smoke in the car and use my iStick most of the time, one of my friends came round to see me last week for a catchup. After discovering my transition from cigs to vaping, I then am advised how obnoxious she found my smoking habit, especially in the car. I’ve known her for about 15 years and would consider her to be a good friend but was internally a little shocked that she’d never said anything before.
I do realise that it’s tough to tell friends unpalatable things but if you’re a good friend you can voice these things – can’t you? It doesn’t mean to say that you have to be blunt. Or rude. But surely you should be able to vocalise your concerns without any fears? These are your friends. Or do I just have a rose-coloured view of friendship. If there’s no honesty (and I consider omission to be slightly dishonest) then isn’t the friendship worthless?
The fact is that if she’d voiced her opinions earlier, it is unlikely that my actions would have changed. I’m a smoker and reserve the right to smoke in my own home – I usually have candles and tealights burning so that the place doesn’t stink (I hope) but I’m sure it has a lingering odour to those who do not partake of the tobacco leaf. Indeed, I may have been a little annoyed had she asked me to refrain from smoking in my own car when she was with me. I’d probably have grumbled internally for a while, mainly because I’d prefer the whole world agree with me on everything, but I’m pretty sure that I would have done my best not to smoke with her in the car.
My default position is tacit agreement. If you don’t say anything, I assume that you’re OK with it. If I’m not OK with something, I’ll open my mouth and say so. Friends don’t have to agree all the time. In fact, sometimes they should agree to differ but I would have to question the value of a friendship where one party feels unable to be honest.