When you go to meet someone, you set up a place where you will be. Because, logically, you can’t meet someone where they are not. You can’t meet where someone was, because they aren’t there anymore. You can’t meet where someone will be, because they aren’t there yet. You need to meet where they are, because that is where they… are.
The same principle applies when you interact with someone. You can know things about them beforehand, but upon meeting them you need to put any preconceived notions aside. You need to meet someone where they are, not where they were, not where you think they should be. It isn’t always easy at first, but it is far easier as you go along. Meet someone as they really are, not as you were told they are, and not as you think they are by appearance. (1 Samuel 16:7)
When you meet someone as they are, you will get to know them as they are. If they trust you or think you should know, they may tell you about how they were. If you are friends long enough, you will get to see who they become.
Meet each person where they are.
Get to know each person as they are.