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Why is My Partner Keeping Our Relationship a Secret?

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Relationships could be complicated and there aren’t actually definite guidebooks that could straightforwardly tell you what’s right or wrong. Since every individual is unique, so is every relationship. Nevertheless, there are certain standards and red flags that are applicable across all sorts of relationships.

Honesty, for one, should be a non-negotiable foundation of a relationship. Otherwise, you couldn’t expect a happy ending out of deceit and manipulation. But what if, per se, you’re sure that you and your partner are on the same level of commitment but they insist on keeping it low-key? What if they suggest making your relationship private? What if they demand to keep everything about you a secret? Read on to further understand where your partner might be coming from, and check out some valuable pieces of dating advice should you end up in such situations.

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Romantic Relationship: Secret vs Private

the difference

There’s a thin line between a secret relationship and a private one. And whether any of these is right or wrong is basically up to you and your standards, beliefs, and principles. After all, not every secret/private relationship fails, and not every open/public relationship lasts.

The bottom line, you and your partner should always be on the same page. Should any of you, for some reason, want to keep the relationship secret or private, there should be open communication and a mutual understanding about it.

To help you better understand the difference, here are some common scenarios.

  • If it’s secret, they deliberately avoid mentioning you. If it’s private, they only mention you when asked.
  • If it’s a secret, they claim they’re still single. If it’s private, they just don’t proactively flaunt that they’re no longer single.
  • If it’s secret, they purposely hide you from their social media posts. If it’s private, their posts aren’t always about you.
  • If it’s secret, no one from their social circle knows about you. If it’s private, only the closest people to them know about you.
  • If it’s secret, they act like your friend when in a public place. If it’s private, they consciously avoid PDA.

Why Your Partner Doesn’t Flex You Online

relationship online

Before technology happened and digital platforms were introduced, privacy was one of the biggest deals in relationships. Normally, couples get to date quietly and at their preferred pacing. They get to enjoy some private and quality time together without much negative pressure or false expectations from society.

On the other hand, the digital age might have made our lives easier but it seems to have made human connections harder. Sure, more than ever, communication and socialization are more accessible and more efficient; however, there are also newer norms and different standards that seem to complicate how individuals present themselves and handle their relationships.

So, in this tech-advanced world where social media profiles serve as mandatory public diaries, how bad could it be if people don’t actively post about their other halves? Is it always a bad thing if a partner decides to keep their relationship a secret? Or choosing to keep it private could actually be healthy for the relationship?

10 Selfish Reasons

  1. You’re The Other Woman/Man. They have an original partner or spouse, and you’re just a fling, a side hustle, a mistress/lover.
  1. Still in the Closet. For same-sex relationships, individuals who haven’t totally come out yet are more likely to keep their relationships a secret.
  1. Just a FuBu. If you’re merely fuck buddies, there’s obviously no relationship to talk about.
  1. Yet Another Experience. You’re just an addition to their collection of “experiences” or ”explorations”.
  1. Basically a Rebound. They’re still invested in their ex and they’re just using you to distract themselves.
  1. Commitment Issues. They are not ready or they do not want to fully commit to anything.
  1. Technically Prohibited. You’re colleagues, student-teacher, related (by blood or by affinity), or in a legally or socially forbidden situation.
  1. Mutual Friends. You have a history with their friends or vice versa, and they’re afraid that they might need to choose between friendship and your relationship.
  1. You Don’t Fit Their Circle. Their friends or relatives don’t like you as a person,  your social status, your family history, or your current reputation.
  1. No Plans for Marriage. They don’t intend to make it a serious relationship or they don’t picture themselves settling down with you in the future.

10 Sensible Reasons

  1. Barely New. You just started dating and they aren’t even sure there’s already a “relationship” to flex.
  1. Keep Private Things Private. They simply don’t find the need to share about their private lives on public-facing accounts.
  1. Not Their Love Language. They aren’t that showy or vocal, and they’re not used to expressing their feelings through such means.
  1. Preventing Jinx. They first want to make sure that whatever you have will, indeed, work out before they brag about it.
  1. Lessen Pressure. They merely want to preserve the rawness and pureness of your feelings and to take things at your personal pace.
  1. Maintain Feasible Expectations. To avoid unreasonable and excessive expectations from people who get to follow your relationship milestones online.
  1. Avoid Comparisons. To prevent immature and unnecessary comparisons with other couples.
  1. Steer Away From Rumors. To protect your peace of mind and mutual decisions from unsolicited opinions or dating advice.
  1. Respect for Ex-Partners. To respect and be civil with your ex-partner (and their friends and family) with whom you’ve just recently broken up.
  1. Opting to Live in the Moment. To actually savor the moments you share together instead of wasting time documenting for social media.

Understanding where your partner is coming from can make a huge difference in deciding how to deal with such requests. Nevertheless, be sure to never overlook or disregard dating red flags. Stick with the relationship tips that actually work for you and your situations and not with those that are dictated by society.

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