I had two recent experiences that have me thinking about violations of privacy!
The first? While we were fighting and out of genuine concern, my husband used my Facebook to message my close friend who is like a sister and ask her to text my phone and see if I was okay.
We’ve never had privacy issues before. We had each others passwords for everything and never used them. He was only able to do that because I saved my password to HIS device for my ease of use. We never read each others journals or letters. We respect privacy in our home.
So? For him to violate that was hard. I understood why! But even though I trusted he would never do it again? I deleted all my stuff off his devices.
The second? I turned to a friend for friendship when my husband left. He was someone who I thought genuinely cared about me. He gave me rides to town, provide my wine while I cried away my sorrows, was someone to spend my time with and offer comfort.
My husband has a distaste for this person because last summer I was drunk and allowed that man to take pictures of me. It was a boundary crossed. My husband knows and we are working on both the trust and jealousy side of that!
But we live in a small community. And my husband and I were going through enough pain that I didn’t need him to hear I was spending my time finding solace with a friend he already didn’t trust.
Day 1 of the break-up I was still in the stage of hiding my issues and not facing my fears. So all I asked of my friend was that they keep our friendship somewhat discreet and not make it out to be more than what I was willing to bring to the table. I needed to be single and work out my own stuff. We were only friends.
It was less than 24 hours before he told people we were spending time together and calling me his girlfriend.
In all my pain, all I asked for was some privacy to deal with it and someone to spend time with who would respect my privacy so my ex wouldn’t hear rumours and feel even more pain.
I brought it up with him a few times but he kept telling people all my details and calling me his girlfriend! When all I have ever said was I need privacy, time and space to deal with my own issues. And when I cut back from the friendship because of it? I felt a sense of hurt from him. Makes me sad because it means I may have lost a friend who I really thought cared about me and vice versa!
This is what I have learned. There are different kinds of violations of privacy. Some come from caring and concern. Others come from a need for self validation or to hurt others. Only the first can be forgiven.
The positive to come of this was I was driven to deeper honesty within myself. I made decisions to avoid friendships where I cannot fully trust. And I should not get into deep friendships with people who have not earned my trust. I don’t want to hurt people by pulling back from them when they violate my privacy.