When we enter a new relationship we often wonder if this is the person we are going to spend our life with. This makes us want to share all of the aspects of our life with them. We want them to know everything. All of our experiences, beliefs, and even all of our secrets. But is this really the best way to go? Are we over sharing too early?
For a lot of new relationships, you did not know the person previously. You have only known them for a short time and only know about them what they have chosen to share. While it sounds good to be an open book, that may not be the best option. I would argue you should introduce yourself gradually. Not everyone deserves to know EVERYTHING.
Once the information is out there is no taking it back.
Keep in mind that this person is presenting their best self. They want you to like them. They are not going to be waving a big flag that says “I’m an unstable, insecure person who will make you one too.” But they might be exactly that. This new love may tell you that they would never hold something against you, but once you open up the box, they can be lying and you cannot take it back.
It may be presumptuous to think the person you are dating is not being authentic when they say you can trust them. But actions rule over words. And actions take time to show. Two weeks into knowing someone is likely not the best time to talk about your abusive childhood. It is the time to get to know the person and decide if they are really who you want to be with.
It is important to get to know someone without the overshadowing of them knowing all of your very personal details. You need to learn if you enjoy each other as individuals, without all the troubles life brings. You need to know that they will not use sensitive information you give them to manipulate how you feel in the future. Be leery of anyone who pushes your boundary when you give vague information or say you do not want to talk about something early on.
Being vulnerable for love is good… to a point.
You should be willing to put yourself out there for love. That is admirable and necessary to get a strong, healthy relationship. However, being too vulnerable sets you up to attract people who seek to take advantage of that. If there are aspects of your life that you are still struggling to overcome, share these things only with people you truly know and trust. Not with a person who you have only know a short time.
It is important that you have the opportunity to get completely comfortable with the person you choose to share all the details of your life with. Allowing too many people to know everything about you invites too many opinions. This can become overbearing and unhealthy. Until you know this person is really looking out for what is best for you, do not over share on the deeply personal things.
You are being vulnerable enough by going out into the world and meeting new people. If you are willing to let someone slowly get to know you, then you are doing an incredibly brave thing. There is no need to go too far with it.
Make them earn a seat at the table.
But the biggest reason I say we should stop over sharing with people we have just entered into a relationship with is that they have not earned a place in your life yet. In order to attract people who value us, we must first value ourselves. People who value themselves do not let just everyone who wants to have a spot in their life. They only allow people who are worthy to fill those spots. If you have only known the person a month, have they really had the chance to earn that yet?
Ultimately, that is up to you to answer. However, in most relationships a person has not done much to prove they will consistently make your needs and happiness one of their priorities. Sure, they may have bought you a few dinners and helped you work through that problem with your co-worker, but is that all it takes to have a place among the important people in your life? One time behavior cannot yet let you see everything you need to in order to make this determination.
Suggestions of Topics to Wait to Share
- Details of your past relationships
Talking about past relationships early on is generally not advisable. For one, it can be seen as a sign you are not over your ex-partner. Also, if you have mostly negatively things to say it may make the other person wonder if that is how you will speak of them if it doesn’t work out. Divulging private information about previous relationships flags you as untrustworthy and gossipy. It is best to wait until the person knows who you truly are.
- Family secrets
Family secrets are secrets for a reason. And your family is your family. If you are going to easily talk about their private information, then how much do you value your close relationships? Again, this might make someone question your character. Not to mention, it could cause big issues between you and your family if this person ends up spreading the information.
- Life altering traumatic events
If you have experienced a traumatic even that has impacted you enough to change your life, you need to protect yourself from that trauma being intensified. Even once you know someone and are bonded, you are not obligated to speak about these events. People often do not know how to respond to trauma and the wrong response could make you suffer even more. Until you know the person will not put you in that situation, do not discuss past trauma.
When you first meet someone you want to put your very best foot forward. You want them to see all of your amazing qualities. If someone walked up and immediately started telling you their past problems, how would you label that person? Would you want to spend additional time with them? If you are a stable, happy person you likely would not.
Having a building up to knowing each other period is healthy in a new relationship. It allows time for boundaries to be set. After all, if this person is important enough to know everything about you then you should have plenty of time with them in the future to share it slowly.
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