Family Secrets can Destroy

Updated: Aug 6

Secrets can be created with well meaning intentions. They are usually formed to protect family and friends from pain. It is natural to want to protect loved ones from the pain of a miscarriage or stillbirth, news of a serious illness, or any issue that would cause stress and pain.

In our cases, secrets are most commonly formed because of shame. Whether as a desire to avoid the shame that could result if the secret were uncovered, or to address an internal sense of shame, this strong emotion is the driver for the creation of so many secrets.

The problem with secrets, is that they leave a trail of messiness in their wake. That is because the cover up, the many small lies and secrets that are created to protect the big secret, open up a door for uncertainty, confusion, and a sense of betrayal.

Family secrets have a tendency to impact relationships. Even small children, who are not aware of the nature of the secret, can be affected, and can even show behavioral issues in connection with the secret. Regardless of whether the secret is revealed, it impacts everyone involved.

When the big secret is uncovered, the pain of the secret is compounded by the fact that it was hidden. After the secret is revealed, the family has to come to terms with the secret, and the many other secrets and carefully phrased words that kept the secret hidden. They may question their family relationships, family history, and any information they previously accepted as fact.

Unraveling family secrets and their fallout with a qualified therapist can be very helpful. Our therapists truly understand the impact that the secret can have. And they know how to help. Book a free 15 minute consultation to learn more.