Treat friendship like a sacred trust....


Being told ‘not to tell anyone’can be an awkward dilemma: it’s often a no-win situation. I’m not talking about keeping a secret about a party or gift – I’m referring to being told to withhold important business information or activity, or acts of wrongdoing, where the person telling you that has done something wrong. In that situation you know it’s wrong to remain silent and your loyalties are conflicted, and when the truth comes out (as it always does) you’ll probably lose the trust and respect of the people you didn’t tell (not to mention any future opportunities you could or should have been eligible for). The person telling you that is not your friend: they may be your boss or someone you thought was your friend, but everything we know about integrity points to the responsibility to report wrongdoing – even when it’s hard or seems disloyal.  These are the kinds of dilemmas that keep you up at night. Never do that to anyone, and object if someone does it to you. Stand up for yourself and your rights today.

Alice Walker (b. 1944): American novelist (The Color Purple), short story writer, poet, and activist