Can I Talk to My Therapist About Private Family Stuff?
My mom’s been upset about something. We’re real close, and I knew something was up with my dad. When I asked if they were getting a divorce, she sort of spilled and asked me not to tell anyone. I promised I wouldn’t, but it’s real hard because things are feeling a little confusing right now. I really want someone to talk to — is it OK to tell my therapist?
This is a good question because lots of people wonder who they can talk to about their feelings when someone asks them not to tell. It can be hard not having anyone to talk to when family unhappiness leaves you with a burden of feelings to carry and no one to confide in.
In your case you are lucky — you have your therapist to confide in. Talking to a therapist is different, because conversations with a therapist are confidential and private. You can tell your therapist that your mom asked you not to talk about this because it’s still a private matter, but you need help dealing with it.
Part of your therapist’s job is helping you cope with complicated feelings and thoughts. A therapist is the one person you can tell your troubles to without worrying about the gossip factor. This way, you can get the support you need without breaking your mom’s confidence by taking to friends or family members before she is ready.
Reviewed by: D’Arcy Lyness, PhD
Date reviewed: May 2013
*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.