I write about my life and life itself seen through my eyes for who can write through the experiences of others if not their own?

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Since early in my teens people have shared a great deal with me. To me it seems natural; it’s what I know. It might be someone I know well or sometimes and many times it is someone I meet casually who I might never see again. I take that information with me and store it somewhere never retrieving it unless that person mentions it again.

A friend once told me that the reason for the voluntary and unsolicited disclosure is the search for a good listener. “They are hard to find” he said “and when a person spots one, they want to unload what they have been carrying”.

I don’t know that is the case.

Whatever the reason, I am glad they find it in me. I wonder, though, how they know that I won’t divulge what has been shared. Why would they entrust me with their secrets, some which could disrupt their lives if known? In this age of web use, who is to know that I won’t air their private affairs on the internet and embarrass them in front of anyone who wants to read their stuff?

A secret told belongs now to the other person. They can do as they please with it and there is very little that can be done about it. There is no taking it back. Sharing is a major risk.

I have never divulged anything anyone ever told to me. There is no need.

Placing trust in the hands of a stranger is risky. Placing intimate information in the hands of a friend can be at times risky if that friend decides to run with the information and disclose it. It is low and dishonest but it happens.

There is no written ethic for secrets and trust. It is unspoken. It hangs from the thread of hope for trust that we all to some extent long for.

It is a great feeling to trust someone enough to share with them. It is a great feeling to take the risk. When I share, I trust the person with whom I am sharing will give me the same level of honesty I give everyone else.

I am glad to take that risk.