Although a secret is usually considered information deliberately kept from others, we also keep secrets from ourselves. Internal secrets consist of emotionally laden knowledge that consciousness represses; the price of such secrets may be a complex or neurosis.
Secrets can alienate us from ourselves as well as others, and are often fueled by shame, guilt and fear. Family secrets can be especially burdensome, even toxic. However, secrets can also serve positive purposes. Sharing a secret can strengthen friendship through a special bond of trust. Secrets help social life run smoothly; initiatory rites may be secret to enhance the significance of a life passage; secrets can help children and teens realize their unique and separate selves; and secrets can protect others from harm.
Secrets are also essential to psychoanalysis: secrets can be safely discovered and will be well contained in the temenos of the consulting room.
“A man is recovering from an illness, sitting down on a chair. He calls me for protection. As I go forward towards him, he looks to his right side to some human figures (females) hidden in the dark. He is afraid of them, he tells me. I come close and hug him and notice that he has a very thick and voluminous hair. His hair emanates energy. I wake up feeling this high energy around my arms.”
Westover, Tara. Educated (Amazon).