You know, it’s funny how our gut feeling often turns out to be spot-on, even when we try to ignore it.
Whether it’s our favorite person or that colleague at work, that nagging feeling that something’s just not right usually knows what it’s talking about, especially when someone’s trying to keep a secret from us.
So, let’s go over some obvious signs that’ll back up your intuition when spotting those hiding something from you.
1) They share too little
My ex-coworker used to be the office’s verbal cyclone. She didn’t miss a chance to keep my office mates and I posted with the latest news and gossip.
However, I knew something was wrong when, one day, she just clammed up.
She began avoiding our morning coffee gatherings, and our conversations were suddenly cut short, lasting only a few seconds.
It turns out she was sitting on some pretty big news about our company downsizing and who was on the chopping block.
One of the most obvious signs that someone’s hiding something from you is when they start to become a bit more tight-lipped or even completely exclude you from the loop.
They go from sharing everything to suddenly shutting the door on you.
You might notice they’re not as open as they used to be, and it’s a surefire signal that something’s going on beneath the surface.
2) They share too much
Sometimes, when people are hiding something, they resort to oversharing as a tactic.
They start sharing too much information or showering you with abundant gifts and affection.
It’s a diversion strategy.
They flood you with this excess of details or kindness to distract you from whatever they’re concealing.
Think back to when we were kids.
You know how we’d blabber on and on to our parents when we were caught doing something we shouldn’t have?
We’d weave these elaborate stories that seemed like they could go on for hours, all in a bid to escape getting in trouble.
Well, adults can be a bit like that, too, in a more sophisticated way.
Don’t get me wrong, being friendly and communicative is important in any healthy relationship.
But it’s enough to raise some eyebrows when someone suddenly starts going to great lengths to keep you overwhelmed with niceness.
It’s like they’re trying to bury their secrets beneath a mountain of friendliness, and that’s when you might want to be a bit more cautious and curious about what’s really going on.
3) They withdraw emotionally
Another classic giveaway that someone’s got something up their sleeve is when they start becoming emotionally thrifty.
This often happens with close friends or couples you’ve spent loads of time with, and you practically know each other inside out.
So, when your buddy or significant other suddenly becomes less vocal or cut back on the “I love you’s,” fuzzy hugs and physical touches that used to be a regular.
This emotional budget cut can be a sign that things aren’t quite the same as they used to be.
When you notice this shift, it hints that they might be trying to keep you in the dark about something.
Pay attention – their actions (or lack thereof) can speak volumes.
4) They withdraw physically, too
People trying to hide a secret will try to avoid being around you. They’ll steer clear of your radar, trying not to cross paths with you.
Because the less time they spend around you, the less chance there is of them slipping up and spilling the beans
So, if you are already suspecting that they are hiding something from you and you start seeing a consistent pattern of:
- Making excuses not to meet in person
- Avoiding making plans altogether
- Coming home late home or staying late at work
- Cancelling last-minute plans
Then, chances are your gut instincts are correct, and they have a secret stashed away from you.
Having valid doubts about transparency between you and your partner or friend does not necessarily mean the trust is broken and the relationship is doomed.
You can have a heart-to-heart conversation to express your concern about them being distant.
Ask them: “What’s been on your mind?”
Let them pen up at their own pace, and assure them you have their back.
Some people choose to fight their battles alone. They withdraw and try to resolve their issues alone.
5) They become a spark in a tinderbox
People who keep secrets push you emotionally and physically away by picking fights with you on the go.
They suddenly crank up the aggression meter, and it feels like they’re just itching for a fight.
It’s often because they’re trying to cover up their guilt or hide something.
So, when you see someone becoming voluntarily irritable around you, remember that their aggressive behavior might be a smokescreen for something deeper they’re keeping away from you.
It’s a sign that they might need a listening ear and a helping hand to navigate their feelings rather than just a good old-fashioned argument.
6) Their body language changes
Some people are just not good at hiding secrets, and their bodies give them away.
First off, they might become noticeably nervous around you.
You’ll see them fidgeting, tapping their feet, or drumming their fingers on the table. This is how they distract themselves.
They might also avoid your gaze.
They usually meet your eyes when you talk, but now they’re either staring at their shoes, the ceiling, or anything but you. They’re afraid their secret might just slip out if they look you in the eye.
You will also notice a change in their speech, such as stuttering, hesitating, or even a change in tone.
You know, it can be really tough when you feel like someone you care about is keeping you in the dark, leaving you with that feeling of being shunned or rejected.
But here’s the thing – before you go charging in to confront them, it’s usually a good idea to give them the benefit of the doubt.
Maybe there’s a valid reason they’re not sharing everything right away.
People can have all sorts of stuff going on in their lives, and sometimes, it’s not easy to open up.
It doesn’t necessarily mean they’re intentionally trying to hurt you.
However, if you’ve given them some time and space and the situation doesn’t seem to improve, then it might be time for that gentle confrontation.
Remember, communication is often the key to resolving these situations and strengthening your relationship.