Some time ago, when I was first going through the breakup with Barb, I decided that keeping secrets was anathema to any kind of relationship, and I started to divest myself of secrets. There was some hard stuff that I had to work through: a lot of the secrets were more around social defenses than anything, and I had to learn to live pretty much openly and not fear what others thought of me. And I got smacked down a couple of times in the process, but really overall it's been a freeing experience and I wouldn't go back.
I still have secrets I suppose, but they're more mundane things that nobody is really interested in rather than anything juicy about my background. I probably wouldn't ever be elected president, but I really don't care about that very much, I'm more interested in not having to waste energy holding things back from people.
Now I do live in a state where keeping social secrets is an expected thing-- there are some things that you just don't talk about-- and I've run up against that a few times. Most of you who read what I write here are close enough that you can actually get what I'm doing, though some of you have taken my openness as more of a violation of some sort of personal boundary. Believe me when I say that I have no interest in violating you.
A side effect of this is that I have no ulterium: what you see is what you get. Yes I will be playful, and yes I will tease, but when the serious shite comes down, you will know where I stand with quite a degree of certainty.
But an odd thing has happened. I've discovered that even though I've wanted to take down the barriers that separated me from others, I've discovered other walls of defenses that are there. The biggest one is self-confidence, mostly having to do with my body image-- which I am actively trying to change. There is also another confidence issue, mostly having to do with my personal responsibility with cleaning and clutter. I do not track well with either of those issues, and I need to find some better methods of handling those responsibilities, ones that work for me.
So for a minute, let's assume that I conquer the last of those issues, and I become the clean, strapping, sexy beast that I know lives inside me. Will I be happy with myself, or will other issues come in to fill the void? Will I become more external, searching for actualization through fame rather than my own internal happiness?
I suspect so. I suspect that there will always be something that I will be self-critical of, something that will give me a handle by which I can hold myself back. Which in and of itself gives me a clue that I'm approaching the self-confidence thing all wrong in letting it be a limiting factor in my social and romantic life.
Does it matter? There are times when I think I'm better off alone-- most of the time, in fact-- and other times when I miss being in love, even if it's an illusion. And there's an interesting parallel, coming as I do from a world of illusion: I want to create the illusion, control it, where if love is an illusion, doesn't it fall under the things I want to control? Or is that just risking apples in the boneyard?
I don't know.