Sharing your relationship troubles with friends, family or coworkers may give you a release from frustration, but it also imprints mental notes in other’s brains. If you say he's a jerk, then they'll have no choice but to believe you. By the next day, he's sorry, all's forgiven and life is good, but the imprint has already been etched. The next day you may have moved on, but the damage has already been done.
If you’re inclined to share your personal relationship business with others or you're an oversharer, here are 5 reasons why you shouldn’t be:
1. Your husband/partner will feel betrayed when they find out you’ve been talking about your private matters;
2. Your boss will say he's noticed that you’re distracted at work, and that’s why you’re not getting a raise;
3. Your friends stop inviting you over as a couple because your hubby seems like a "real piece of work";
4. Some people you tell your secrets to view you as weak for staying in a bad situation even if in reality it’s not a bad situation; and
5. The sharing of any future exciting news in your life will be met with a lack of enthusiasm and probably viewed as a cover-up.
Signs That You Overshare
Unfortunately, it doesn’t take more than one or two bad instances that you’ve shared to make people jump to conclusions and adopt their own scenarios. When you overshare you not only risk hurting your relationship, but its reputation as well, and quite possibly causing some real damage to your other relationships. Do any of the following scenarios sound familiar?
- You walk into work 15 minutes late. You sit at your desk, and next thing you know, you're sharing your review of the morning with your cube-mate. "It's all his fault. Do you know what he did this morning?" And then you proceed to tell them your side of the story; the only side they’ll ever get to hear.
- You call your mother or sister and share something that your partner is sure was just between the two of you, like finding Playboy magazines in his briefcase. Next time the relatives come over for dinner, they’re shooting daggers at him for what he thinks is no reason, and he goes on the defensive. Another fight between you is a good possibility, not to mention his feelings of having the bond between you betrayed.
- Your girlfriends see you’re upset and you divulge that you found a phone number on a piece of paper in your hubby’s jacket. They’ll be full of advice of course, and full of anger towards him. Two days later when you see the number on his cell phone, you answer it; it’s a new client who wants to invite you both to his summer house for the weekend. You feel so silly that you never mention it again, not even to your friends. Later when they ask about it and you explain what really happened, they don’t believe you. They think you’re covering up his infidelity.
We don’t often tell people when things are going well in our relationships, but we do tend to share when we’re feeling upset. And whether the people that we tell are supportive or not, they never really get to know the whole story, just the parts we tell. It can have detrimental effects on your life as a couple.