It can be tempting to do whatever it takes to keep the peace in your relationship. While you may know that keeping secrets feels wrong, it is common to want to hide things, such as how much you spent while shopping, just to avoid an argument. Unfortunately, omitting the truth often leads to bigger relationship problems down the road. For this reason, it is important to keep the following reasons why you shouldn’t keep secrets from your spouse in mind for the next time that you consider hiding the truth.
Keeping Secrets Requires Lying
Simply not saying anything at all often feels better than lying, yet keeping a secret is still a form of deception. This is because your spouse would likely want to know about whatever you are hiding, and just the fact that you feel like it needs to be a secret is a sign that you are doing something that they wouldn’t like. Instead of keeping a secret, try asking yourself before you do something if you would feel the need to hide it. If so, then it might be better to skip doing it altogether or at least talk to your partner first.
Small Secrets Often Lead to Bigger Ones
Everyone knows that little white lies often spiral into a tangled web of deceit. Secrets can work the same way, and you may find yourself having to keep more of them than you can handle. For instance, keeping your friendship with an ex a secret may seem like an easy way to avoid hurting your partner. Yet, you may find that you must keep even more secrets if you have to hide who you are talking to on social media.
Secrets Break Down the Trust in Your Relationship
Sure, what they don’t know won’t hurt them, but it can hurt you to keep a secret. The guilt that you feel from harboring secrets makes you begin to wonder what your partner may be hiding. Over time, you may even find yourself questioning the things that they say since you no longer trust that either of you is telling the truth. Once trust is lost, it is hard to get back. This makes it important to always avoid hiding what is really going on from your partner.
Honesty Helps Prevent Infidelity
Maintaining honesty in your relationship is important for helping you to avoid becoming unfaithful. This is because secretive behavior is a major sign of an affair. Once you feel comfortable keeping a little secret, such as failing to mention that you ate lunch with that coworker who flirts with you, then it is much easier to simply not say that you had a physical interaction with someone else. Making the decision to never keep secrets ensures that you won’t be tempted to stray.
A Need to Be Secretive Signifies Other Problems
When you feel the need to keep a secret, it is important to ask why. This is because secretive behavior often means that there are deeper issues at work. For example, you need to look into how you and your spouse communicate. Are you afraid to tell them the truth because you want to avoid a yelling match? Alternatively, you may want to keep a secret about an addiction or behavior that they would not agree with, such as gambling or drinking too much. Often, learning to repair these issues through counseling or learning how to communicate better resolves the need to keep secrets, and it makes your relationship stronger.
The Truth Eventually Comes Out
You might be able to keep a small secret for a long time, but the truth almost always comes out eventually. When it does, you will be left having to deal with the aftermath. In addition to your spouse being upset about whatever you kept secret, you will also have to work on rebuilding the trust that you lost. That often takes more work and time than simply working through dealing with their reaction when you tell the truth from the beginning.
When you got married, you took vows that made it clear that your partner is the most important person in your life. Keeping secrets ruins the opportunity that you have to lean on your partner for support when you need it. If you feel the need to keep a secret or have some that you have been hiding from your spouse, then consider reaching out to one of our Cuppls Recommended Relationship Counselors so that we can help you begin rebuilding the trust and communication that your relationship needs to be healthy.