Thursday, August 20, 2015

Privacy and Secrecy

I’ve been reading about the Ashley Maddison hacker scandal – where a website that is designed for married people to meet in order to have affairs - has been hacked and the names and details of its users made public.   Some of my clients have used that website.  Sometimes people come to tell me of affairs they have been having or affairs they wished they had had, or (most common) affairs they suspect their partners of having.  The cards are usually very accurate at finding that truth.

I think there is a big difference between privacy and secrecy.  There are things about my life that I don’t want splashed across the internet,  because they are private,  and I hold them close to me,  but they are not secret – other people in my life know about them and it would not devastate anyone to find them out. 

If I meet a couple who has chosen to have an open relationship – they both know that Thursday night they go out separately and have sex with others – then I have no problem with it.  That is their private business. But I often meet couples where one person is going out and having sex with others and flat out lying about it to their partner – and that causes a lot of problems. That is not privacy; that is secrecy – a piece of information that can be devastating if it were to come out.   It has been my experience that secrecy is almost always harmful to relationships.  So by all means keep your privacy,  but beware of keeping secrets…

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