Dr Frank Pittman describes infidelity as “the keeping of secrets”.
The longer Dave and I are on this recovery journey, the more we learn about ourselves and others, and the more we connect with betrayed or unfaithful men and women—the more we align with Frank’s description as being truth.
If you’ve read our Memoir you’ll recall that Dave kept plenty of secrets. Secret past times, secret “friendships”, secret communication—in fact so many secrets it’s crazy to imagine how this could have gone on for so long. What’s even crazier is the number of people around the globe who are living this reality and have done so for decades.
Dr Frank’s article “The Liberating Power of Honesty” is a brilliant and concise read on the impact these secrets have on the ones holding them and the ones who are being kept in the dark.
The long and the short of it is—secrets and lies kill relationships!
The person who shares your secrets owns your soul. You are bound to those who know your secrets and you are separated from those to whom you lie and from whom you hide yourself.Frank Pittman “The Liberating Power of Honesty”
Let’s take a look at another secret—pornography for example—Dave and I are learning more and more that this seems to be extremely common amongst unfaithful men with most guys admitting that their first exposure to porn was at a very young age. (We’re talking early teens or pre-teen)
I guarantee that every betrayed woman I have spoken to has been completely blindsided by this revelation of their partners’ secret life. Maybe you’re of the mindset that pornography is completely normal and I’m just a straighty 180—everyone has a right to their own opinion but if you think that porn is harmless, I urge you to do a little more research, please.
Listen to the TEDx talk by Ran Gavrieli on why he stopped watching porn or at the very least watch this short doco, Raised On Porn—The New Sex Ed you might just reconsider the impact pornography has on yourself, your relationships, our communities and the generations.
However—if porn is your thing, my question to you is—do you share it with your partner or do you like to keep it to yourself? Are you both on the same page with viewing, do they know what you view, how often you view and the ways this brings you pleasure? Is it a joint decision between two consenting adults or is your partner in the dark, clueless to what you’re keeping hidden.
How well do you know your partner or think you know them?
Do they keep things hidden from you? Are there secret fantasies, relationships, communication, or pastimes you know nothing about? Stupid question eh, if you don’t know you don’t know right? This is how most betrayed partners live, we thought that we knew our partners and never really felt the need to question until our worlds crumbled around us.
How about you though? Is there anything you keep anything hidden from your partner, finances, friendships, other?
If there is the withholding of information, keeping secrets or hiding friendships, questions to ask of yourself or your partner is why?
Why the need for secrecy? What are you/they afraid of?
These honest conversations are hard—*real hard—deep heart conversations are life-giving though, they lead to freedom and connection.
I promise you, they are nowhere near as hard or destructive as living a lie.
*(In some situations it may be beneficial to have a therapist’s support)