Home is a place not only of strong affections… it is life’s undress rehearsal

heart contrast

The nearer you get to any human being, the more defects you see

“A little community of people, all of whom would be willing to die for each other, may not be able to live happily together; that is, they may have far less happiness than their circumstances, their fine and excellent traits, entitle them to expect.

“The reason for this in general is that home is a place not only of strong affections, but of entire unreserves; it is life’s undress rehearsal, its back-room, its dressing-room, from which we go forth to more careful and guarded intercourse, leaving behind us much debris of cast-off and every-day clothing. Hence has arisen the common proverb, ‘No man is a hero to his valet-de-chambre;’ and the common warning, ‘If you wish to keep your friend, don’t go and live with him.'”

“Which is only another way of saying,” said my wife, “that we are all human and imperfect; and the nearer you get to any human being, the more defects you see… The evenness and beauty of a strong, well-defined nature, perfectly governed and balanced, is about the last thing one is likely to meet with in one’s researches into life.”

by Harriet Beecher Stowe (June 14, 1811 – July 1, 1896)
from Little Foxes or, The insignificant little habits which mar domestic happiness (1866)
Chapter I
image – giuvax

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2 Responses to “Home is a place not only of strong affections… it is life’s undress rehearsal”

  1. Juanita Says:

    This reminds me of some lines from the movie “The Love Letter” with Kate Capshaw and Tom Selleck.

    When Helen’s character (played by Capshaw) has hurt George (Selleck) and she asks for his forgiveness, he says:
    “Forgive you for what? Being human? Messy, fucked-up? That’s the good stuff.”

    That has got to be one of my fave movie quotes ever!

  2. clarissa mcfairy Says:

    It’s like all the niceties or pleasantries people exchange. They get discarded back at the ranch. Home sweet home indeed!

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