In the line of duty over the years, I have seen total strangers claim to be living together as a family. Spouses keeping secrets from each other, children keeping secrets from their parents and siblings doing the same among themselves. In reality they are housemates and not a family. However, they really do not enjoy the disconnect they
experience among themselves because they are in constant race to cover their secrets. This constant state of unrest is usually occasioned by harsh reactions and responses by partner/relative to sensitive issues in the past as well as stigma and discrimination. On the other hand, I have also observed that inferiority complex and self stigma are some of the key reasons behind the secrets people keep at the expense of their lives.
For instance, many lives have been lost to HIV/AIDS and Cancer because the individuals kept the information about their health condition to themselves to avoid stigma and discrimination. In other words, these lives were lost because they were hiding the care and drugs they were either taking or suppose to take, in a bid to avoid questions from their relative/s. Consequently, there were no interventions at critical moments by the relative because of information gaps.
Be it as it may, it pays to trust somebody in your family with information about your health condition be it chronic or non chronic ailment in case if emergency situation arises. Those trusted with others’ health information should prove to be trust worthy by maintaining the confidentiality required. They should give maximum assistance to anyone with health challenge to enjoy a productive life because stigma and discrimination is the fastest killer of anyone with health challenge.