The One About The Mutual Acquaintance With The *Maybe* Secret Life

FRIEND, WHO IS NOT A DRAMA QUEEN, is convinced that a mutual acquaintance of ours, let’s call her Maureen, has a secret life.

Friend, who lives closer to Maureen and communicates with her more frequently than I do, thinks that Maureen is up to something.  Something weird, that is.  Something that Maureen doesn’t want us to know about.

Friend, who enjoys ye olde Facebook, tells me that Maureen disappears for days, not responding to any form of contact and then when they do talk in person there are holes in the story– about who was there, when events happened.

EASY AS IT WOULD BE TO DISMISS Friend’s observations about Maureen, I’ve heard this story before, many years ago.  And in that situation, the suspicions turned out to be correct.

Back then, that mutual acquaintance was off doing some things in another town involving a new age-y cult-type group that mutual acquaintance didn’t want anyone to know about.

But eventually we did find out– and that was long before Facebook, a simple nosy way to lurk on the edges of someone’s life.  Which is, of course, what Friend is now doing as she tries to find out the truth about Maureen’s alleged secret life.

AND ME, WHAT AM I DOING ABOUT all of this?  Not one blessed thing except listening to Friend.

I figure that enough people tell me their secrets and concerns without any prompting, that I don’t need to go looking for more things to know about people than what they want to share with me directly.

Case in point… read the first sentence of this post.

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Question of the Day:
Have you ever wondered if a friend or acquaintance has a secret life?  And if so, did they?  Or do you still not know for sure?
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Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Creative. Humorous. Adaptable. Happy enough. Looking for the crumb of truth in the cookie of life.

53 thoughts on “The One About The Mutual Acquaintance With The *Maybe* Secret Life”

  1. Sometimes I have wondered and occasionally it did turn out to be true – others I still don’t know and probably never will. Being inclined to privacy myself and tolerant of my own curiosity, I didn’t but much effort into finding out.

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    1. bobcabkings, I’m the same way as you. I don’t go sleuthing about friends and acquaintances, so whatever they do in their personal lives is no concern of mine… until they tell me, of course.

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      1. I am an attentive listener to “real friends” . . . in case they need my 2 cents. But I often tune out gossip from casual acquaintances, especially when they are gossiping about acquaintances 3x removed.

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        1. Me too. Most of what people say to me floats in and out of my head– which is why when Friend, who is the antithesis of a gossip, started sharing her concerns I listened more intently. That being said, if Maureen has a secret life, so be it. It’s not my concern, unless she wants to tell me herself.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Never wondered at all about any of my friends/associates. I lead a very dull life and have rather predictable people within my circle. Or perhaps they are all just really, really good at covering up all their secrets…

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    1. Deb, I’ve wondered from time-to-time about some of the people who I have known &/or now know. But I don’t go looking for info to confirm any secret life. HOWEVER, years ago when it turned out that the mutual acquaintance was [indeed] up to something weird, it makes me reluctantly believe that Friend might be onto something now.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m sure everyone suspects me of having a secret life since I am quite antisocial and keep to myself. The neighbors probably especially wonder about that creepy guy at the end of the street who hardly ever comes outside. Oh, if only they know what goes on in here. If only they knew….

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    1. evilsquirrel13, well, in a way, your blog is your secret life. Sort of, I guess. So the question is: how do you feel about being the one who is rumored to have a secret life? 👀

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  4. Question of the Day:
    Have you ever wondered if a friend or acquaintance has a secret life? And if so, did they? Or do you still not know for sure?

    I found out, quite early in life, that minding one’s own business was the best course of action. Was I subjected to others speculating about someone we both knew? Yep. One case stands out mightily (most of the players in the drama are dead so I’m not spreading further mayhem by sharing). I had a very good friend (I considered her my second mother) when I was 19. This woman was lovely, except for the fact that she LOVED to gossip and spread rumors about other folks. Give her a flimsy piece of ‘evidence’ about someone and she was off to the races. The end result which would filter back bore little to no resemblance to the original piece of juicy gossip. One day it reached my ears that she had been doing a little ‘speculating’ about what I was up to (which oddly was pretty damned accurate..I wasn’t circumspect in the day). She came to our house a couple of days later and I confronted her with what she’d said. The look on her face was priceless, she couldn’t deny it – the person she’d shared her opinion with was standing right there. But she couldn’t exactly admit it either – she risked losing my friendship. I told her frankly that I knew what she liked to do about gossiping, but that she best leave me and my family out of future forays on her part, or she would lose me as her friend.

    Do people in general have secret lives? Of course they do! EVERYONE has a part of themselves that they keep private. Should friends and family be concerned about that life? Sometimes (like your example of the cult thing), but it’s wise to tread lightly. If the person keeping the secret wants everyone to know, they’ll share it themselves given time. Of course WAITING for that time can be irritating..

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  5. Embeecee, what a fascinating story you tell. I can only imagine how empowering it was for you to confront this woman in such a straightforward way. Good lesson to learn early on, I’d say.

    I don’t spend my time looking for gossip about other people, but I am aware when people start to say and do things that don’t add up. I have a finely calibrated BS-meter, so it often alerts me to when something is off. That seems to be where Friend is with Maureen. Something’s not right.

    But I’ll just mind my own beeswax about this situation, as I do with just about everything I hear about. That’s one of the advantages of not being on FB, I miss much of the drama and angst that haunts relationships– and leads to conjecture about secret lives. 🙄

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  6. Um, I think a lot of the people I know have a secret life. Some private hobby or guilty pleasure they share with other secret people in their secret niche.

    I figure if the people in question wanted me to know, they’d tell me, and if they’re not telling me, I’m not at the trust-level required. I’m not pushy or prying like that.

    I read people too well to have much hidden from me, which is both a blessing and a curse. I keep a lot of secrets for people. Discretion is crucial. People who make themselves vulnerable deserve trust. I’ll agree with you completely about being a person who is already given a lot of information and trust without prompting.

    Too many people think they’re hiding ‘it’ successfully when in reality, everyone knows. There are those moments though, when one of us says on the fly, “And you know he’s ________” and another one of us says, “Right?!?” because it’s been that obvious, that predictable.

    I love gossip, I do. Hearsay makes awesome entertainment when it’s people I don’t like. I don’t and wouldn’t stalk anyone or ask around for more information. I enjoy a juicy tidbit, but I’m not invested in things that are not my business. Certainly not into spreading it around.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. joey, I don’t doubt that you’re right about many people enjoying guilty pleasures of some sort– and not wanting friends and family to know. I’m fine with that actually. To each his or her own.

      I often wonder if the reason that people tell me all manner of things is because I appear to be discreet and that they figure I’ve screwed-up often enough that I won’t judge them. That being said, I never pry into why people do what they do, unless they want to tell me.

      What makes this situation interesting to me is that Friend is not one to spread rumors or take revenge on anyone, so when she started talking about Maureen I was surprised. And I listened, suddenly remembering a similar scenario years ago. Trippy, huh?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. YES. It is trippy.
        I wonder what Friend is feeeeeeling about Maureen?
        So much to wonder. Is it concern? Or is it that she can’t stand not knowing? It’s interesting. Too bad the blogosphere isn’t private enough to share updates later.

        The Mister says we look like helpers. and people can tell. Maybe you do, too.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. joey, you said it! Friend and Maureen are close, so any change in behavior, I guess, must show up on Friend’s radar. I dunno: 1) if anything weird is going on; 2) what Friend’s motivation is; & 3) if I care at all about any of this… except that it’s a good theoretical topic for bloggy conversation.

          I like the “helpers” idea. Makes sense.

          Liked by 1 person

  7. LOL You have to let us know what the secret life is when you do eventually find out (I know you will). Unfortunately the secret life was being carried on by my husband, of course I found out (I’m a bit of a Sherlock) and cease and desist orders were given. Fortunately, we are still happily married as it wasn’t quite a deal breaker. You must have some kind of aura about you to attract all this secret telling.

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    1. Janet, I wonder if you’re right about my aura! For as long as I can remember people tell me things, unprovoked. Although in this case, Friend telling me about Maureen was unexpected on two levels. IF I ever learn what’s up, I’ll share it here– BUT don’t hold your breath…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. John, good one. Usually Friend steers clear of drama, so this situation is the exception to the rule. Trust me when I say that I will be MYOBing about this whole secret life [maybe] topic. 😒

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  8. I used to care about those things much more than I do now. Not that I’m immune to gossip (I like to listen as much as the next person), I just don’t go worry so much about what others are doing – unless it directly impacts my life. In fact, I HOPE your mutual friend has a secret life, assuming she enjoys it. Most of us are pretty dull.

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    1. Janis, I’m with you all the way. I find myself saying “whatever” with love in my heart now– whereas at one time I said it to be snarky. I don’t care what other people do as long as they’re not hurting themselves or others. And I like the idea that Maureen has some things that she keep off FB and away from us– assuming they’re good things that make her happy.

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  9. I worked in Human Resources too long. Don’t wanna hear it. I put my hand up when someone starts to say something. No one can beat some of the things I heard in the course of my work. Like the woman who came to me to resign because she was going into the witness protection program. I asked how we should get her check to her. She gave me her new address and said her phone number wouldn’t change. For heaven’s sakes, we all know it doesn’t work that way!

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    1. Kate, that’s a hilarious story. How stupid did she think you were? Or, how stupid was she? I’m not into personal drama, but found it most interesting that Friend, who is usually the same way, was curious about Maureen.

      I don’t know that I’ll ever get the whole story, but sometimes I gotta wonder what motivates people to tell me what they do. And then I move on, not lingering on that thought for more than a second or two.

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  10. You are wise and a good, supportive friend.
    What’s that saying? Not my circus, not my monkeys? I try to live by that rule.
    Of course I listen when other people talk, especially now since we’ve moved to a new town and I need to get “the lay of the land.” Like a research project, if you will. But I try not to engage in or encourage gossip that is speculative or for entertainment’s sake. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that there are at least three sides to a story – mine, yours, and the truth that lies somewhere in between.

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    1. Maggie, that circus saying is exactly what I was thinking about as this conversation happened. If it had been anyone else but this particular Friend I wouldn’t have taken much stock in what she said, but Friend is never like this. [Or never like this around me before.]

      However, I have no interest in lurking on the edges of Maureen’s life to see if I think that she’s doing something hidden on the side. For one thing, that’s not who I am. And for another thing, and I say this with love– I don’t care.

      But this topic does make for a good blog conversation in the comments. Thanks for joining in.

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  11. I think, given my former profession, that I have a definite interest in behavior and sometimes I hypothesize – in my own head – about the roots or causes of some behavior. But wandering around hypothesizing to the point of gossip – this I don’t agree with.

    Still, sometimes there are discussions with others – somewhat like your old man of a few posts back or perhaps a friend who has suddenly had a partner drop them. Trying to understand others or even our own reactions. I’ve never had someone come to me about someone else’s maybe secret life. I like to think I would say it was none of our business.

    BUT what if? My mom saw the husband of a friend with another woman many years ago. I believe she said something to him but decided not to tell her friend. I’m not sure I agree with her decision but I’m also not sure what I would do or what the right thing to do it. It’s different when someone tells you their suspicions and when you witness it yourself. I think.

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    1. Zazzy, I’m fascinated by what people do and how they do it. I’m always observing the actions to see if they jive with the words. That being said, I keep fairly quiet about other people when talking with different other people. [Made sense?]

      I’ll pass on factual information like “they went on vacation to the lake and Joe broke his toe.” But I wouldn’t go on to say that Joe was drunk when he did it.

      I’ve heard this “secret life” scoop twice now, so I guess that EITHER I run with a weirdo crowd OR I know a lot of people who read too many mysteries.

      Regardless, I found it interesting that this time down-to-earth Friend talked about this. I didn’t have a thing to add to the conversation because I haven’t a clue what Maureen does in her moments away from us. Pretty much I nodded my head and said things like “maybe” and “I dunno.” 😮

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  12. Everyone has a little bit of a secret life. Admittedly mine isn’t super exciting, but no one really knows everything about me, and I’m glad about that. Other people have much more going on, and I do find it interesting, although I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. Like you, I just mosey along. 😉

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    1. Margaret, “mosey along” is a perfect way to describe my approach to what people do and tell me. I’m interested in friends and family, but unless they’re doing something unhealthy or immoral I tend to say “whatever” with a cheerful smile– and mosey along. Like I did with Friend and her worries about Maureen.

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  13. Oh, gosh. I applaud anyone who can actually Keep A Secret in this day and age of nonstop social media and instant online video posting and constant overshare, some of it against one’s will.

    Honestly, I am weary of Celebrity. Not mine, you understand. No one know who the hell *I* am, thank goodness. I’m tired of hearing that so-and-so has X number of followers, or is a YouTube sensation, or whatever. Yawn. I enjoy the cachet of being a Nobody.

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    1. nance, you make a wonderful point. I agree that anyone who can be online without telling all about themselves is to be applauded. Maybe that’s why I’m indifferent to finding out about Maureen’s *secret* life.

      I don’t follow any celebrities, but stumble over unwanted information about them whenever I go anywhere online. Like you, I’m a Nobody. Suppose Emily Dickinson will let us into her club? 😉

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  14. Several times, I have been told something outrageous about a mutual friend/acquaintance’s secret life. My instinct has always been not to believe it….even though the ‘story’ did turn out to be true in quite a few cases! To more directly answer your question, I believe if people want me to know their secrets, they will find a way to tell me.

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    1. Donna, I know how you feel. Years ago when I was first told about the cult-ish activity of a mutual acquaintance, I said “no way.” Turns out I was wrong– which is why I paid heed to Friend’s suspicions. But, like you said, until Maureen tells me her secrets directly I’m in whatever mode. I don’t need to know unless she wants me to know.

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  15. I have a childhood friend who once stood me up for lunch when I happened to be visiting in town. I thought she was just being flaky. It turned out she had been working for the CIA and called away on assignment. I know what you are thinking – she gave me one of the oldest, lamest excuses out there, but turns out it might just be true unless she has mad photoshop and other general forgery skills.

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    1. Allie P, that’s exciting. For her, but for you to have such a great story to tell! I do hope it’s true– and will chose to believe it is so regardless of any contradictory information because that’s one heck of a secret life. Coolness.

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  16. Apparently all my friends are boring. And though I have no right to care, but I’ll chalk it up to my current social isolation due to having a newborn, I totally want to know if your friend finds out anything about Maureen. Is this a Breaking Bad situation, or what?

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    1. Betsy, I didn’t get any specifics about what Friend thinks that Maureen is up to. After Friend explained her idea to me, all Friend wanted to know is if I had noticed that Maureen’s stories seemed vague [NO] and if I knew where she went when she wasn’t communicating [NO]. I didn’t know a thing, so the conversation moved on…

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        1. I know. I beg your forgiveness for not getting more detailed information about what the secret life is all about. The thing is, I don’t really care– as long as no one’s getting hurt.

          Mr. Blandings hasn’t happened yet because [and this is ironic] our house is in such disarray that no TV is hooked up to cable or wi-fi right now. And I want to watch Cary on as big of screen as possible.

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  17. I can’t say I know someone who lives a double life per say. But I do believe people can act different in different areas of their life. For example, I’m a different person around my friends than my coworkers.

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