Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Betrayal or not?

Sometimes people confide in you and tell you something that you know you should repeat but they tell you not to. You ever wonder why people expect that from you? Why tell me something you know is bad and then request I hold it inside? Especially when telling is the right thing to do? Why do we wonder if we should betray their trust and tell what we know to be the right thing to do? Is it really betrayal if it is truly in their best interest to tell?

For example lets take our kids. What is your son tells you that this other boy got drunk and was driving home from a party ripped out of his mind. Do you tell the parents? Do you tell them if they are your friends? Do you tell them if nothing happened while he drove? Do you tell them because you would want them to tell you? Maybe that person told you because they knew you would tell?

I was recently in this exact situation. Not with my kids but with an adult. A grown person called me in the middle of the night and confided something to me that really I had no need to know. I knew that the information I was being told was in my best interest to relay to others, but my gut kept me questioning myself about it all day. I wondered if I should let it go? Was it my business to get involved? Could the others even help if I did tell them? Would it just cause more stress on these people who really don't need any further stress? Will it just make them feel as helpless as I do?

Ultimately I decided that the adult who put me in this position was first of all putting me in a unfair position. Second even though this person felt that I had no right to say anything, ultimately you gave me that right when you told me. You made it my business. Your choice to tell me and my choice to do with that information how I choose. choices, choices, choices.

Lets say I smoke and my husband hates it. He nags me and so I tell him I quit but I really didn't. If I tell you and you repeat that is that betrayal? I think so because I am not under the legal age to smoke, I am not hurting anyone in doing it (besides myself of course) and I am not putting anyone else life in danger.

However lets say I am a a alcoholic and I have struggled with this for many years and decide to seek help. If I am home one day and I call you and tell you I drank. Is it betrayal that you call my husband, parents, siblings someone close to me and warn them I have fallen? I say no, this could potentially kill me, and if you love me you should call someone that can help me.

Of course my blog, my opinion but even though the examples are like night and day in harm factor I believe life is about choices. Which choice will you make? Everything you do literally is a choice. Do I get up? Do I go to work? Do I drink? smoke? Regardless of what you do it comes down to choice. (Unless someone holds a gun to your head and forces you to do something it's your choice to do every thing you do).

Try to remember that if you are on the person blaming someone for "betrayal". You chose your life and I choose mine. I have to do what is best for me and my family and then you. If you're mad, angry and never talk to me again, that's your loss. I tried to help you because even though sometimes its clear you don't care about yourself I care!


Anonymous said...

Good Question!

Pam Hickman said...

I hate that turmoil. I wish I had the guts to tell whoever asks me not to tell that they shouldn't tell me the secret especially, if it would hurt someone else. I struggle with the same things you do. Life is always about making choices, right or wrong and then living with the consequences, ugh.