From Left to Write: Can You Keep a Secret?

I struggled with choosing a topic or theme to write about for The Mill River Redemption, not only because there were so many to choose from but also because several of my options made me really uncomfortable. I could have written about my relationships with my mother or my sister, but we are all in the midst of a difficult time right now and talking about them publicly could damage those relationships. We all drive each other completely crazy at times, but they’re my blood and their ties are valuable to me. I could have written about love, but I’ve already done a lot of that on the blog.

I haven’t written much about secrets, though…and secrets sure are a big theme in the book.

I keep a lot of secrets for a lot of people. I’ve become a confidant, willing or not, for quite a few loved ones, and that doesn’t account for those secrets of my own that I keep. Some secrets are inconsequential, while others are potentially life-changing. I’m usually pretty good at keeping quiet watch over everyone’s confidences, but fairly recently I failed to keep the gates locked on a really big one. It was a huge secret, one that would change lives for the worse once revealed. I promised that the secret would be safe, but my conscience took hold and shook me until my foundation started to crack.

There was not a chance in Hell that I’d be able to keep silent about this person’s infidelity, especially because it affected me and several people very close to me…and so I opened my mouth and spilled everything. The relationship between the cheater and their partner, as you’ve probably guessed, is in shambles.

Should I have kept my mouth shut and allowed the cheating to continue? How much longer would it have gone on had I not said anything? How many more people would have been affected? How much more damage would have been done? So many questions I didn’t have the answers to…that I didn’t want the answers to.

I know that keeping a promise is an honorable thing to do, and it’s unfortunate that I’ve likely lost the friendship and trust of the person whose secret I’d promised to keep, but in the long run I think my actions were worth it. It was simply too big to keep a lid on and my conscience is clear with the knowledge that I refused to play the silent accomplice in hurting someone I care about. Sure, confessing was painful for all parties involved, but I think that allowing the infidelity to continue would have hurt a hell of a lot more.

Lesson learned? Sometimes, it’s just better to share a secret than it is to keep it.

Have you been entrusted with a huge secret? Were you able to keep it or did you end up telling?

This post was inspired by the novel The Mill River Redemption by Darcie Chan, about two estranged sisters who are forced to work together in order to uncover the hidden inheritance by their mother. Join From Left to Write on December 2nd as we discuss The Mill River Redemption and enter to win a copy of the novel. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

  • Wow, that must have been so difficult. Though it wasn’t right of the person to burden you with that secret.
    Thien-Kim recently posted…Plenty of Gift Ideas For Book Lovers!My Profile

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  • I’ve been in similar situations and it leaves you feeling terrible!
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  • What a tough situation! I can relate somewhat in that people often confide in me as well, and many of the secrets I’ve been told are upsetting or disturbing. I’m glad you took the path to a clear conscience!

  • readathomemama

    Thank you, Darcie! So am I!

  • readathomemama

    It definitely does, Kate…but I’m happy to have gotten out of it. I hate seeing what my sister is going through, but it’s better that she knows the truth rather than being forced to continue living a lie.

  • readathomemama

    Kim, it definitely wasn’t….but I feel much better now that I don’t have to keep it anymore.