My mother reminded me yesterday of an incident that took place about two years ago:
We two had to pick floor tiles for our house. The sort of decision you only think is enjoyable when you don’t have to make it for yourself. When you do, you suddenly find yourself staring at hundreds of options all of which have one thing in common: they are not quite what you had in mind. Oh, and there’s also this absolutely gorgeous model over in the corner, which costs about 10 times as much as you could possibly afford.
So, there we were, roaming a shop, looking through samples, deciding. Finally, we found a tile model (for the main part of the ground floor) we both liked. So, we went along and planned, calculated, played with colour schemes, transitions and contrasts.
There was just one problem with it: we did not like it. Neither of us. We didn’t actually hate it, no, it was okay, but we didn’t like it either. I thought my mother likes it, so I played along; she thought I like it, so she played along. At some point, long down the road, one of us let a negative remark slip, and we were like “wait, you don’t like it either? But I thought…!”. So we laughed and got out of the shop.
We were tired of the entire selection-decision process, and didn’t want to prolong it unnecessarily by being overly picky and moody. As long as one of us thought it’s good, the other one would tone it down and go with what’s just “oh well, not that bad” for them. That’s a societal attitude, and it’s a good (sometimes even necessary) approach to be able to agree on things in a finite time. But it might get problematic, when both (or all) sides choose to pick the “follower” role at the same time.
Sometimes, to trust someone means to blindly follow, and to know that you’ll end up in a good place. But sometimes, it also means to stand up and say “no, I don’t like this; I’m going for it because I trust your sentence, but this would not be my preferred choice”. Sometimes we find it easier to entrust our life (well, not in the context of floor tiles, obviously!) than to entrust our honest opinion.