Forum member Alan Smithee asked a series of questions regarding what we share and what we keep secret due to mental illness. She asked:
Do you keep secrets from your partner because of your mental illness (MI)? Do you keep secrets from your best friends because of your MI? Do you only share some things with other MI people and not non-MI people?
I’d like to pull two specific threads out of these questions: The first is the basic question of keeping secrets. This is not a matter of whether we keep anything to or for ourselves, but whether we keep secrets specifically because of our mental health. The second thread is the issue of degree — degrees of closeness, degrees of relatability — which, in short, asks whether certain people or certain relationships warrant more honesty.
Lastly, I’d like to add one more layer to Alan’s questions: Do you lie? Beyond simply keeping some things private, beyond issues of omission, do you lie to keep your secrets?