B.You may have come across couples who act as if there is nothing between them, even though they are together. The basis of this behavior is sometimes environmental pressures, sometimes the partners’ desire not to disclose their relationship during the process of getting to know each other, and of course the fact that their relationship is a forbidden relationship. However, love and affection are special feelings that color people’s lives and make them experience spring on winter days. We wondered why they preferred to hide them instead of living them as much as they wanted, and we got the answers to our questions about secret relationships from Duygu Çiloğlu, Specialist Psychotherapist, Marriage and Couple Therapist from Pedamed Psychiatric Medical Center.
AT WHICH STAGE OF COOPERATIONS IS IT BETTER TO SHARE WITH THE ENVIRONMENT? OR IS THERE ANY SUCH TIMING? The issue of sharing relationships with the environment may vary from person to person. While some find it appropriate to share their partner with the public from the moment they first meet, for some it takes longer. Therefore, there is no set time limit. The process of couples getting to know each other starts with the first six months and is completed in approximately two years. The quality of time spent together to get to know each other is of great importance. Couples who have been together for many years but do not know each other well cannot be said to spend their time together healthily. This is because; It is related to the couple not recognizing their feelings and thoughts and not expressing them. It is important for the person to know himself and realize his wishes. First of all, “Who am I? What are my features? What do I expect from a relationship? What should an ideal wife be like for me?” He needs to be able to answer questions such as. A person who is more determined in these matters can share this with his/her circle easily, making sure that the spouse he/she chooses is suitable for him/her. A person who is self-aware can express his wishes more easily to his partner.
WHAT IS A SECRET RELATIONSHIP? Secret relationship; It can be described as a person or people trying to hide their relationship from the environment. This either shows that he is not sure or stems from the thought that it is a relationship that will not be approved by him or the environment.
WHY IS IT PREFERRED TO HAVE A SECRET RELATIONSHIP AT THE REQUEST OF ONE OF THE PARTNERS OR BY MAKING A JOINT DECISION? Sometimes couples may want to keep their relationships secret. Although this is usually a situation seen at the beginning of a relationship, secret relationships that last for many years can also occur. Even if one or both of the couples are not sure about this relationship, the relationship can be hidden. Apart from being on the safe side, sometimes secret relationships may be desired when one or both couples are married or are in an existing relationship and are looking for a new one.
WHAT ARE THE REASONS BEHIND THIS? To find out what happened, you first need to know the person. While negative thoughts about the relationship may be intense, past experiences, teachings and personality traits may also play a role in this. The person’s basic thoughts and schemas about abandonment are also important. People who think that they will be abandoned or that the relationship will end may hide their relationships to avoid being hurt. If there is an underlying abandonment schema, the person needs to receive psychotherapy sessions with schema therapy. Sometimes people can look at their relationships as if they will end. If the person thinks that it will end, the person can engage in confirming behaviors such as a self-fulfilling prophecy.
SOCIAL PRESSURE CAN INSIST ON ONE TYPE OF WIFE We know that in Turkish society, especially women are still unable to live their relationships freely. Social pressures can sometimes cause relationships to be kept secret. Expert Psychotherapist Duygu Çiloğlu, to whom we asked how much the family, friend or work environment affects a person’s relationships, said, “The teaching-like effect of behaviors specific to men and women is undeniable. I can say that as women enter business life, their ability to live their relationships more freely increases. The difference here is not just the work, but the increased personalization. Apart from this, personal characteristics are also important. As personality traits differ, so do the concepts of ideal spouses. If a person ignores all these differences, he or she may search for a uniform, idealized spouse determined by family, friends and work environment. This may lead to a need for approval day by day. When the ideals set and the beloved spouse differ, an environment of chaos can occur. “When a person is aware of himself, his relationship and his environment, he can take more confident steps,” he says.
ELIMINATE THE POSSIBILITY OF FORBIDDEN RELATIONSHIPS, IS IT RIGHT FOR PARTNERS TO HIDE THEIR INTERESTS FROM EVEN FROM THEIR CLOSEST ENVIRONMENTS FOR REASONS SUCH AS SOCIAL STATUS, EDUCATION, PROFESSION, PHYSICAL DIFFERENCES? Especially in some personality traits, social status, profession, physical beauty and relationship selection are very common. For example; If one of the partners has narcissistic personality disorder or narcissistic features, they want to see themselves as superior and more successful than others. He also seeks this superiority in his relationships. For example, the narcissist’s lover must be more beautiful, more attractive, and her education level and job must be superior. If he has such characteristics, this is ideal for him and he does not need to hide it from those around him. Sometimes people can focus too much on their social status, physical characteristics, and educational status, and move away from recognizing their feelings and thoughts.
WHAT EMOTIONS DOES SUCH A SITUATION CAUSE THE OTHER PARTNER TO EXPERIENCE? If one of the partners hides the relationship from the close circle due to reasons such as social status, education, professional or physical differences, the other partner’s feelings are usually sadness, anxiety and jealousy.
COULD BE THE BASIS OF THIS PREFERENCE BEING THE WANTING THAT THE RELATIONSHIP NOT BE WORN OUT BY THE ENVIRONMENT? Yes, maybe. Sometimes people can hide their relationships when they do not want to hear negative thoughts from those around them. This situation is closely related to the expectation of approval. People who need constant approval may worry about a relationship that their environment will not approve of. Here, one acts by thinking on behalf of others. Living life with the behavior of trying to read the minds of others is a cognitive error.
DO PAST EXPERIENCES AND TEACHINGS ALSO CAUSE THIS KIND OF ACTION? Yes. A person’s life and decision-making mechanism are not only related to the existing situation. Life is a process that continues from the moment we are born until today. This cannot be measured by the reaction to just a few events we have experienced. Here, it is necessary to explore the person’s life, his experiences, the situations that affect him, the events that upset him more, his wishes and expectations. These are also of great importance for psychotherapy.
IS THERE A RESEARCH ON WHO WANTS TO HIDE SUCH RELATIONSHIPS? It is difficult to conduct a general secret relationship research because hiding the relationship is a situation that can include cheating, not being sure about the relationship, and negative thoughts of others. The research conducted is mostly about deception.
HOW LONG DO SECRET RELATIONSHIPS LAST? It would be difficult to determine a clear lifespan for the relationship, which also applies to secret relationships. Although it usually lasts for a short time, long-term ones can also be encountered.
LIVING PEOPLE TELL…
WE HAD TO! “We have a good relationship with my boyfriend, we love each other very much, but we have never been able to walk hand in hand on the street. Because no one knows we are together. She was the ex-girlfriend of a dear friend of mine. Their breakup has nothing to do with me. He was even deceived. In fact, our relationship started in those days. When my friend left him, he called me to ask why. I just told him on the phone a few times that he shouldn’t worry. Next thing I knew, we were texting and talking about ourselves on the phone. We met after a while. We were both having so much fun. Actually, if I had told my friend then, maybe our problem would not have come to this. We have left eight months behind. This is the first time I love someone this much, but I’m very afraid of the reaction of both my family and friends. Another problem is that I am constantly being introduced to potential lovers because no one knows that I am with someone. I don’t know how far it will go this way, but I love it very much. ” Sinem B.