The author, Anaïs Nin, wrote that “we do not tell stories as they are, we tell stories as we are.” Whether the stories we tell are directly about ourselves or not, they have our fingerprints all over them. We filter them through our own experience and language. We connect them to other stories in our library of experiences. Thus, two people can attend the same event, read the same novel, or watch the same sunset, and tell very different stories about them afterward.
Judges or juries trying to discern facts from multiple accounts of an event have to take this into account. Even when the stakes are lower, it’s wise for the rest of us to remember as well.
The stories we tell reveal the teller as well as the told.
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