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Secret keeping - did every family?

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couldyouholdplease Tue 17-Nov-20 17:55:15

I’m wondering how ‘normal’ my family were/are ...

Born 1991 .

My parents had/have always encouraged certain things to be kept secret .

For example; one was adopted at birth, made contact with their biological family . We were told the excistence of these people was a secret, we weren’t to discuss them or tell anyone where we’d been . I think at the time I was 2 or 3 . I remember having at one stage seven people I called granny and granda .

We had a relative known for sex abuse - we were told never to be alone with him but never to tell anyone else . His wife didn’t - and still doesn’t - know . I don’t suppose she ever will .

We had another relative inside for doing something awful; told at thirteen or so but told I must never tell anyone else .

My mum told me all sorts of personal problems and has quite severe MH issues including self harm - told never to tell anyone or discuss it with anyone else eg GP, teachers . She still keeps a great deal secret from her mother and openly admits she is terrified of her parents .

I tried to talk twice (a GP and a family support worker) and stopped both times . First person said she wasn’t interested, second said never to discuss it again or people would think badly of me .

I did confide very much in someone in my late teens who told me none of this was at all normal and it wasn’t a healthy way for people to be .

As an adult I wonder how much of this was normal, happening with others and how much it explains why I’m so anxious as an adult . I find it very hard to form meaningful friendships with others and find I’m scared to talk to people - I’m worried what will happen if I do.

Has got me thinking today because someone asked if I was fine and well supported, I said yip, and I’m not - but I was scared what would happen if I was honest .

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