Never (ever!) undermine the power of a secret.
Secrets unite us. Bring us closer. Divide us. Break us. Discourage us.
Paralyze us. Take hold of us, and bound us.
They cause doubt. Unnecessary guilt. Infiltrate our lives. Our world.
When a society is open, it doesn’t mean it wants to share all private information.
It means it’s open as in communicative and approachable. It suggests it can share things, responsibly.
But secrets can permeate our society. Or a family. Or individuals.
It’s impressive what they cause.
Secrets: they may even cause someone to feel ‘morally’ superior because they did the ‘right’ thing by sharing someone’s secret.
Well, like anything else, there is a (right and wrong) place, just as there is a (right and wrong) time to share them.
And not all secrets can shatter or destroy. Some are promising and bring closeness, allowing a sense of bonding.
When you have a couple of people sharing a secret and a third party feels excluded, eek!
But, just because someone feels excluded, it doesn’t mean you should share the secret.
If it you share it, it will abruptly violate the privacy of the other.
Secrets cause suspicion.
A wife going through her husband’s wallet and phone log.
A husband going through his wife’s purse.
A mother going through her daughter’s diary.
Secrets vs. privacy. There’s a huge difference.
I want my privacy. I don’t want things, such as my bedroom, my undies drawer, or my closet, or what I have on/in my nightstand, or my ‘drafts’ files, the filing cabinets in my garage, .etc., out in public view.
I can share a secret. I want to be able to say things only to certain people. And, I expect them to keep my secret out of the public’s eye, hidden. I do expect that, but perhaps that’s hoping for too much.
Not all privacy is secrecy, though.
Keeping something private — you choose to have boundaries, you select a confidante, a friend.
Keeping something secret — hiding or disclosing something you’re too scared to share for fear of causing pain. Or it just may be too damn shameful. (a daily note, well, that’s my public thoughts, and secrets are not listed here. Though, some intimate moments, ideas, and opinions, in my head here, they are not secrets.
And we all know right from wrong, no?
Morality. Well, that’s neither here or there. We are not a higher being to impose our morals on others. Only you can see what’s ‘moral’ to you. Aside from the fundamental, right or wrong, of course. I imagine.
I KNOW NOTHING! I just talk to talk. And I saw this ‘secret’ sign on a sunrise hike last week. Gah!
When I was a kid, Mr. K, my art teacher, once told me (after a handful of kids came in on a Saturday to finish processing film and getting school projects taken care of) I was a “moral relativist.” (At the time, I didn’t understand what he meant by “Moral Relativism” and, still not sure I understand completely). He said this after we learned that a Boy-X kissed Girl-Y while Boy-X had another girlfriend. My reaction to Boy-X was,
“Eeew, yuk, you’re a pig! Oh, sorry, who am I to judge?! You do you. Whatever. Just don’t kill anyone!”
The other boys and girls in the group said I was wrong to think that.
They said I, being of the female species, should stick up for “other girlfriend” because she was so pretty and nice (I assumed they thought she was the ‘victim’). (But, I didn’t know her! And I grew up with an “all is fair in love and war and sometimes we get cereal for dinner!” mentality.
Still, I wanted to ‘fit-in,’ and I said,
“Yes, you guys are right. ‘Other girlfriend’ as pretty and smart as she is should find a better guy that treats her like she’s the most magical thing on the planet. But, Boy-X, well, I don’t have strict rules, so, do what you want, you little pervert. Just remember to say three Hail Marys and most importantly remember this ‘What goes around comes around.'”
I felt like I read a script, but I felt pretty good of ‘sticking up for “Other Girlfriend” and not sticking out like a sore thumb with these high school kids.
And, upstairs, in the art room, I smiled because I had nothing else to say or harp over in this High School drama.
And, Mr. K., who was one of my favorite teachers, laughed at my comment and said I was a “moral relativist.” And I asked him if that he meant that as something like a distant relative or a drunk uncle? :)))
(That was private moment/thought. Now, it’s open- that wasn’t a secret.)
Once, I made Mr. K’s contact lens come out of his eye. I made him laugh so much, that he cried-laughed.
We were on the floor looking for his contact lens. And one of the other girls said, “where are the cameras, we should film this!”
It was quite funny.
I was 16 years old.
Mr. K and his wife were probably some of the coolest adults I knew. He’s a director of a school, now. I think. Good people.
Good people, and good places. When they’re that good, you want them all to yourself. Like a little secret. But, at the same time, you want to share them with the world.
So, privacy. I want that, for sure. Without a doubt!
And everyone should respect boundaries. So please don’t ever look in my undies drawer unless I ask you to help yourself. Ha.
But, secrets, meh, they’re over-rated.
And if you want to share a secret, well, it’s okay. If we all have many secrets, we can spare and share a few. Whatever!
If you don’t want something out there, well, you better take it to your grave or make them take it to theirs.
But wait, before you tell me any secrets, let me get some buttery popcorn, put my feet up and, oooh, a get a shovel.
And, now, you can spill it. Spill that juicy secret you’ve been dying to tell me.
But remember, once you’ve told me, I have to dig a hole (for you) something like six feet deep.
The moral of the story isn’t: if you don’t want something shared, then don’t tell it to anyone.
The moral of the story is if you’re going to tell someone a secret, be prepared to push them into a hole with a shovel. Or be ready to have your secret out in the open. Somewhere. Anywhere.
(Actually, there’s no moral to this. Just words.)