There are times people behave in a distant, secretive defensive manner and we are prone to take offense at that. However, I’ve come to realise that most people often take a non-disclosing posture because of their own insecurities. They may not feel safe or comfortable enough at the point in time to open themselves up. This is not because we are not worthy or trusted but the individual in question has a lot to ‘protect’. In his or her own view, what we call common may be very sacred, sensitive or special to him or her. And what’s important to learn for healthy interpersonal relationships is that we shouldn’t push people beyond their ‘safe zones’. They must be comfortable enough to disclose for the relationship to be wholesome.
When we take offense, we assume we have been counted as unworthy and this is not always the case. On the contrary, the individual may actually be the one feeling unworthy. As a matter of fact, the more liberal and liberated an individual is, the more he is able to self-disclose. Therefore, we should be empathetic with friends rather than being critical, respect their decisions, and if we have any concerns to communicate such in a manner that conveys our real care about them and their situations.
Often, people who hitherto had been open may have felt the need to protect themselves for one reason or another. People won’t feel free unless they feel safe. And so we should aim at creating a conducive environment rather than complicate matters with offense, if indeed we ourselves are not ridden with our own insecurities. Only those who are truly whole can help others be whole. We all need help and so being empathetic with the ‘scruples’ of others may well be a step in the direction of attaining our own wholeness.