Thursday, December 8, 2011

It's A Secret to Everybody

In my many years on this glorious stage we call earth, I have been previewed to (both willingly and unwillingly) information that could be inferred as less than public knowledge. I’m not exactly sure why these senders choose to burden me with this information. Maybe it’s because I don’t talk too much about the extremities and facets of other people’s lives or that I’m just a good listener. Either way, my official stance is that secrets suck but they are one of many necessary evils.

Allow me to regale you with a tale. I once knew a woman who, for all intents and purposes, was a cheater. She would go out and have casual sex with numerous partners, some of which she barely knew, while still coming home to her husband as if nothing was wrong. Every time I spoke with her she sung praises of her husband, how he loved him, that he was the man of her dreams and so forth. And yet, despite all of his accolades, she allowed other men to drill her without so much as a care or disregard.

Soon, I confronted her about this. I asked her why she committed these adulterous acts even though she loved her husband. Not surprisingly, she didn’t give me a straight answer nor did she choose to go any deeper about it. The timing of my query couldn’t have been perfect. Justice would soon be served. A couple of days later, she found out that her husband had been cheating on her for the better part of 6 months.  Naturally, she flipped out and completely went ape shit on him. She came to confide in me yet again about this and this time, I wasn’t about to listen to her excuses (or lack thereof).

I told her straight up that she shouldn’t be surprised. Men can generally tell when they’re being cheated on. We’re jealous at heart and by and large inquisitive creatures of habit. If he couldn’t see the signs of her cheating then it’s probably because he’s cheating himself and doesn’t care enough to notice. Finally, I told her that she should be ashamed of herself for getting mad at him since their behavior was one in the same. She retorted with a simple counter. She caught him, not the other way around. As far as he was concerned, she had been faithful this entire time. In some ways, she’s right. It’s her secret and the fact that it hadn’t been exposed only suits her argument. I thought to take it upon myself to tell the husbands of her transgressions but I balked at that idea (for reasons which I’ll state later) in order to take a more logical approach.

One good argument always deserves a counter. I put it to her this way. Just because he doesn’t know, does not mean it didn’t happen. I then recited a proverb that would hold true in many other similar situations. If two people get drunk, have sex, and the female gets pregnant but neither of them remember the even at all, does the future child cease to exist?

I don’t remember talking to her much after that. Not for any personal reasons on my part but I assumed that my logic made her feel bad. That’s understandable. She used to come speak with me just to get stuff off her chest or seek affirmation for her decisions, be those good or poor.

The reason why I chose to tell this story was in order to bring up an important point. Secrets are burdens. Whether it be to yourself or the ones that you keep in the loop. Nothing good can come from them. The reason that things are kept secret is because they are hurtful truths that we want to keep hidden. And for the record, all secrets are inherently bad. Keeping knowledge of a significant other’s birthday gift is not a secret, that’s a surprise. Know the difference.

Keeping secrets will only trouble ourselves and those we choose to share them with. I wish I could say they shouldn’t exist but a certain film proved that would not be a world we’d want to live in. For the record, there are no good secrets but there are many necessary ones. Going back to my story, I chose not to tell her husband about his wife’s adulterous behavior because I knew that if I involved myself in that relationship now, I would be responsible for what happens to their relationship from here on out. I only knew of her husband, never knew him personally. Telling him this information could have caused a number of outcomes. One of which I dare not speak of but not uncommon in these situations.

The main point I am trying to bring to light is that any secret you hold is more powerful than you can ever imagine (Thanks Obi-Wan!). Do not take them lightly no matter how frail and unimportant they may seem. Anyone willing to keep something a secret has enough emotional investment in that information that could jeopardize their very well being. That being said, there are just some things we don’t want others to know about and that’s perfectly fine. Just as long as we are fully aware of what will happen should those secrets let own. Some people would kill to keep their information private. Many people already have. Any information worth taking a life from is probably something you shouldn’t be doing or have done in the first place,

Knowing what I know now, I’m much less inclined to burden myself with secrets. The next time someone asks me, “Can you keep a secret?” I’ll politely tell them “Sure, but I don’t want the responsibility.”


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