Friendly Gossip is an Oxymoron

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Friendly Gossip is an Oxymoron

"Can you keep a secret?" Becky asked me in a hushed tone. We were in my living room. Last I checked, my walls don't have ears. I had no idea why she was speaking so quietly.

"Why? What is it?" I was wise to this type of chit-chat. She wanted to tell me a piece of gossip that she wasn't supposed to reveal. Her betrayal was quickly becoming my problem.

Before I could respond negatively, she burst out, "Jennifer is pregnant!. She just found out and told me, but asked me not to tell anyone. You won't tell, will you?" She continued, "Just act surprised when she tells you."

"Okay," I managed halfheartedly. How unfair. Now I knew something I shouldn't; even worse, I had to "pretend" to be clueless. Becky hadn't even given me a chance to say, "No, I don't want to know." I honestly didn't want to know. I had been in similar situations before and gotten burned. I lost a dear friend because of revealed secrets and gossip. Curiosity doesn't even get the best of me anymore.

Now the games begin, I thought. Should I betray Becky or Jennifer? History repeats itself and I knew nothing but distrust would come of this conversation. Unfortunately, there is truly no such thing as "friendly gossip." At that moment, I knew that I couldn't trust Becky. Had she been revealing all the confidences that I shared with her in the past? She had always been a close friend. She was also that friend from whom I always learned the latest scoop on everyone. I started thinking of the countless secrets that I told her over the four years we knew each other. Many of those conversations became public. I hadn't thought she was the person who told. I hadn't considered that someone who claimed to be a dear friend would divulge my feelings. I heard an abundance of gossip from her lips. Not until she sat in my living room whispering about Jennifer had I considered she was a blabbermouth.

I had told Becky when I discovered I was pregnant. She was ecstatic. I hadn't told anyone else. A few days later, everyone was congratulating me. I was hurt. I wanted to impart my wonderful news. I was deprived of the experience. Despite my hurt feelings, I didn't want to confront her. I didn't tell her that I suspected that she blabbed.

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