Jeanette Winterson has a line in her book, the Passion, that I didn't understand until just now:
"What you risk reveals what you value."
For the longest time, the thought I had in answer was "Well, only a fool would risk something they value - why put something at risk if you care about it?"
I think that I was forgetting that people don't ARBITRARILY risk things.
They risk things in order to gamble for BETTER things.
Thus, by putting something you value at risk, you're hoping to trade UP, to acquire something of even greater value, and you believe that the more you risk now, the more you stand to gain something you REALLY value.
The reason this occurred to me is that I wanted to write about risking good friendships in order to attain BETTER ones.
I think a lot of friendships come to a point where they hit a wall at which you have to decide (vocally or without realizing it) - do I recruit this person into the upper tier, of my BEST friends, or will they only ever be just a decent friend?
Often, this point results from some sort of recurring conflict that you just can't learn to live with.
And it forces you to make a decision: Tell this person about it and try to change them...or forget about it (with the understanding that you can never be as close with this person).
And therein lies the risk.
If you choose to say something, there's a good chance it creates a conflict from which you cannot recover.
Perhaps you discover a soft side of them and they never forgive you for poking it.
Then, even if you get through it on the surface, you've played your hand, and you realize for SURE that they'll never change - which inevitably means they'll start to fade in your mind as a friend.
If you never say anything, then you never confront a side of them you're afraid to see.
And you remain as you were - good friends.
Think it's worth it?