Secrecy

Secrecy

A couple years ago, a close friend of mine whom I’ve know a long time had an issue with substance abuse. He had been fighting addiction for a couple months, until [comma after “until”] with the help of his close friends and family, he decided to get some help. The very next day, he enrolled in an inpatient rehabilitation center in California. [Organize your writing: new idea, new paragraph.] With him and I being [slang: Because he and I were] close friends, I had everyone he knew [slang: You told people to contact you?] calling and texting me asking if I had any idea where he was at. Naturally, this wasn’t something he wanted many people finding out about. [Relate to class: People keep a secret to protect personal space or a name.] So [comma] for the next two month or so, I had to continually lie about his whereabouts to some of my closest friends.

I told most of them he had taken a semester off and decided to live in California for a little while. Most believed it with no problem, [semicolon] however [comma] I did have several people who thought it all sounded a bit strange. Some would stay behind [behind what?] after others had left and ask, “Okay [comma] whats [punctuation: what’s] really going on?”.  [Relate to readings and lecture: Do you think the person trying to penetrate the secret had a desire to know, gain control, feel superior, or be intimate?] [Organize your writing: new idea, new paragraph.] Yet time and time again, i’d have to respond with persistence, hoping not to get caught in one of my own lies. I have to admit I felt guilty at times, lying to some of my closest friends and family. [Did you feel a sense of loyalty, guilt or anxiety? Were you angry at having to lie or otherwise act contrary to your morals to protect the secret?] [Organize your writing: new idea, new paragraph.] After a month or two, I began considering the consequences I could possibly face if any of them where to find out I was lying. I would lose all credibility, as well as the trust of several social circles. However deep down I knew how delicate this matter was for my friend, and even though I was lying, I was doing it for the right reasons. [Relate your feelings and insights to the readings. Did you carry a burden the way that Edward Snowden said he did?] 

I continued to respect his privacy, until he came back from getting the help he needed. He was not in communication with many people while he was up there, so he was surprised to find out how few people truly knew where he was all that time. I would say that this series of events strengthened our friendship in the end. He was aware of the burden I carried for him and I truly do believe he was grateful for it.

In the realm of raw information, secrecy, lies and confidentiality tend to go hand in hand. In order for someone to protect the secrecy of their confidant, they must be untruthful to the majority of their audience. Examples, like the story above, demonstrate how delicate the communication of information can be; especially when the communicator has a motive to spin the truth, or even lie. If a simple lie about the whereabouts of another person could improperly inform people with great efficiency, who know what kind of lies we as the general public are susceptible to. Todays digital age is so saturated with information that it starts to become difficult to discern fact from fiction. It is therefore more important than ever that people question not only the content of the information they consume, but also the source. [good insight] 

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