Monday, July 11, 2011
I know this young man who I very much respect. He happens to be an EXTEMELY private guy. His family apparently assumes that I’m fascinated by a recent…issue (which I won’t go into detail about because he’s a very private guy), because I have now been privy to every detail his family has about it, including some rumor mongering by more extended family members. One member of his family talked about it at some length with me today, going into some detail wondering about the why's and how's of the situation, speculating on the consequences (complete with some suppositions and assumptions based on what time he gets home from work), and otherwise discussing with me information I don’t think he would want me to have. He and I are by no means close, really more like nodding acquaintances than anything else, but I love his family. So, how do I handle it when I know I’m receiving information he wouldn’t want me to have? Do I cut off his family (who again, I love), and just say “I don’t think he would want me to know this”? Do I walk away, even when I’m being spoken directly to? Do I try to change the subject and never share what they’ve just told me? Do I pull him aside one day and tell him that this is going on (which would be SUPER awkward)? Do I tell another family member that this is going on without sharing the details and let her tell him if she needs to (she would understand why I’m flummoxed by the situation and would probably not ask what the gossip is)? Do I send her a link to this blog so she can read my question and answer it for me (effectively the previous choice, but without having to see her face to face)? Do I just ignore it? Is there another choice I haven’t thought of? Seriously, what does one do when one wants to avoid hearing gossip about someone? Especially when you’re secretly interested?