A secret means you know something but you feel unable to share. Or you may want to share but want it to remain confidential and you are unsure if this will happen. A secret may be something you have found out and no-one else knows you know.
There are also different kinds of secrets. In a relationship secrets may be kept between the two of you (like a baby or money issues), there are secrets you keep as a family (things your children may also know), then there are things you share with the extended family (these could be past family difficulties). In friendships there are friends who, if you tell will not tell anyone else, friends you can confide in. Then there are friends who you never tell because they tell everyone and nothing is confidential, trust is broken and the secret is out.
In relationships and families sometimes there is intuition (a gut feeling) if you notice changes in behaviour or routine that can make you feel something is wrong. It may make you seek out and find things. What are you going to do with this information? It is now your secret.
Deciding what to do with secrets can be very hard. Who do you tell? How will others react? There may be risks not everyone will understand, you might feel shame and disgust. People who know you well may recognise something is wrong but feel some subjects are taboo.
Carrying that secret can make people:
- Change their behaviour
- Isolate themselves
- Experience emotions like anger, disbelief, crying, sadness.
- Cover up
Secrets can be passed on, so a partner may pass to another partner. This may make the one partner feel relief as it is shared but what does the other partner do with this secret? What does it mean to the people involved?
You may decide to seek out someone independent to share the secret with, someone who is not family, will not judge you and who will keep things confidential. It may help you to explore what your options are. There are also many books that have been written about specialist subjects where secrets are present.
by - Sara Briner