How much should you tell your friends about your life? Everything or just a little? Do they need to know everything that is going on in your life and your private details, your sexual fantasies, fetishes, personal opinions on other friends, events or situations? Or should we remain the gatekeepers to what we really want, think and feel and not interrupt the status quo?
It has been an issue I have thought about a lot lately and more so over the last few days, after being somewhat betrayed by someone I thought I could voice my opinions to. As a result, I’d be inclined to suggest that your friends needn’t know it all about you. Remaining a creature of mystery is an important piece to ensure your friendship continues, but also protects you from being ambushed.
Certainly, there are instances when you need the advice of a good friend or you would like to clarify something with someone you think would understand. And there would certainly be situations when you are aching to gossip about someone or something to someone you just know will agree with you and gossip with you equally as much. It’s what we do as humans – we gossip.
It’s all part of friendship I would assume - the ability to confide and share information with those who you deem to be close and sincere. But the flipside to this expectation is to expect that the same people you gossip and share information with, do the exact same thing with others about you. It’s only fair and should be expected. I do it. I’d be lying if I didn’t.
In the past, I have been accused by some of not telling enough about myself but I am guiltier of telling too much. I tell one person, then not satisfied with their input; I go tell someone else hoping they’d give a better insight or agree with me even more so. But there are definitely times where I gate-keep the information I tell certain people. Certain information should not be shared too much and if you have been told something that is perhaps taboo, private or secret you are expected to have the decency to honour it and guard it with your life. Don’t you?
Recently I was caught out where all my opinions about a particular situation we’re spilled out to others. Delivered in a ‘joking’ way, I had to refrain from my face dropping and then being overcome with anger wanting to jump the table and punch their face repeatedly. Suffice to say, I learnt my lesson about divulging my opinions to certain people.
Additionally, I learnt not share any information about my sex life with any friends after it became widespread knowledge about one sexual preference of mine. Not even a kiss gets reported nowadays.
So how much do you share? And should you expect the same? I guess it comes down to how much you are an open book yourself and how comfortable you are in sharing the information, opinions and beliefs you have. Don’t gate-keep everything, but know who you can tell and who you cannot to avoid being flustered and embarrassed.