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When You Shouldn’t Keep a Secret

Nov 30, 2017

Trust is important, and we always want to maintain trust with the people we love. When they ask you not to tell it puts a certain pressure on you. You don’t want to betray a friend, but you are also concerned about their safety. There are particular situations, which call for us to ask ourselves the question, “should I share this secret?”

What are some examples of secrets I should tell:

Some secrets are not meant to be shared.Some secrets are not meant to be shared.

1. Suicidal thoughts or plans.

If your friend tells you they are thinking of suicide or they are giving away their stuff, you can’t keep it to yourself. You have to think about your friend’s safety, and you need to tell people who can ensure that he/she is safe. Regardless, of what they tell you, always reach out for help. The fact that they are even thinking about it means that they need help. It is not normal to have those thoughts and therefore they need to be dealt with.

2. Mention or showing of self-harm.

Self-harming is very dangerous and can lead to serious injury including death. You must let someone who can be responsible know about this activity. This is very risky and not an effective coping skill.

3. Abuse of any kind.

No one should be facing physical abuse of any kind especially by a parent but also from a sibling or a partner. Abuse of any kind should be reported.

4. Sexual abuse or sexual assault.

If anyone reports incidents of sexual abuse or sexual assault you have to report it. The same rules apply for abuse, it is your duty to say something. 

5. Drug problem or an addiction problem of any kind

If you know anyone with a serious drug problem that is affecting their life. You need to tell someone. Drugs are very dangerous and addiction is a serious issue.

Some secrets aren't meant to be secrets at all.Some secrets aren't meant to be secrets at all.

Basically, you can’t keep a secret which involves harm to another human being. Safety is the number one factor and should be exercised at all times. It doesn’t matter how afraid you think your friend will be. Your friend told you because they need help and once they see the support available to them, they will get over it, and maybe even thank you one day.

Sometimes we have to break trust in order to help our friends and loved ones. It doesn’t mean that we are bad friends. They have to learn that these issues are serious and need to be dealt with properly.

Like if a friend tells you they like a guy do not to tell anyone, this is an example of when you don’t tell, but if your friend is telling you a secret that can harm them, you want to say something.

It’s the law to report any incidents of child abuse and you should not ignore this information if it is shared with you.

Sometimes it feels like people talk about suicide all the time, but they don’t do anything. Never fail to take every incident seriously because you never know when that time will come. The chances are the more likely they are to talk about it, the more likely they are to try it, 

There are some secrets you should tell.There are some secrets you should tell.

What you can do to help your friend?

1. Talk to them

Let them know that you are here for them and happy to talk at any time. Let them know they can always try you, and if for some reason you can’t pick up, that you will call them back.

2. Tell them you don’t judge them

Let them know that they can talk to you and that you won’t judge them. Make them feel comfortable and free to talk about what’s bothering them.

3. Tell them you want to get them help

Without force of any kind, let them know you are here to help and help them get the proper treatment that they need.

Don't tell people other people's business. Don't tell people other people's business.

Remind them that we all go through tough times, but that they can get better, especially if we get the help. Remind them that this too shall pass and that things can only get better from here.

Remember that there are secrets you can tell, especially if they are going to put someone else in danger. Even if someone tells you that they are going to hurt someone else, this is not a secret that you should keep. Even if they threaten you.

It’s not easy, and no one likes a snitch, but if you could really help someone wouldn’t you want to? Sometimes people tell us these things because they need help and don’t know where to turn to. They are scared of what might happen to them if they tell, and you can reassure them that they are safe and have nothing to worry about.

Secrets that hurt the individual or another person are never worth keeping. You need to report this dangerous behavior before it gets out of hand.

If someone is trusting you, this says a lot.If someone is trusting you, this says a lot.
Have Your Say

Have you ever been told a secret you couldn’t keep? What did you do? Comment below.