How honest are you? How honest should we be? Are you willing to hide things about yourself at work, around family, or in general in order to make life less of a hassle?

I like the ideal that I should be able to be who I am no matter the company. I also know that this is largely impractical because the vast majority of people are going to be uncomfortable with my views and lifestyle, and thus it will effect opportunities in life. I know that these abnormal ideas will continue to remain eschewed so long as they are not challenged. I also know that battles need to be picked; the right time, place, etc. I haven’t quite figured out the balance here. That being said, I’m going to now rant.

When I have to deal with small-minded, fear-riddled, and insecure people who will ignorantly criticize and discriminate against other people who live in different ways, forcing those other people to hide parts of their lives from said insecure people, I get angry. When I watch atheists afraid to come out, polyamorists who hide their other girlfriends or boyfriends from family, neighbors, and co-workers, etc then I realize that the insipid masses are forcing interesting people from mainstream society.

Think about how much more interesting life would be if people didn’t have to be scared or justifiably concerned about their parents, supervisors, and/or neighbors finding out about their little secrets. Think about how we could more easily find people with similar interests if we didn’t have to hide behind avatars on social networking sites for small hidden communities of freaks, geeks, and other assorted awesome people.

This myth about the “normal” way to be, what most are raised to covet (which is largely a fantasy anyway), is stifling people I want to get to know. And why? Because people are afraid to challenge themselves.

OK, rant over. So what do we do? How do you handle your freaky little secret that your family and some friends don’t know about? How much happier would you be if you didn’t have to hide as much?