The Secrets That Bind Us

We love to share, but the half-truths we tell our better halves can end up saving the relationship

Even the best couples tell each other little white lies every now and then. Of course, secrets don’t necessarily spell doom for a relationship.

In fact, some secrets can actually hold a relationship together.

To celebrate Valentine's Day we surveyed 2,000 people in happy relationships to see what secrets they are keeping from their significant others.

So, what secrets need to be told to keep a relationship strong?

Watching porn

Less than a quarter of men say they hide their porn habits from their partners. Only eight percent of women also keep this secret. Perhaps the modern age has led to people being more open with their internet habits?

Number of ex-partners

Opening the ‘ex-files’ is always a tricky subject in relationships. However it looks like men and women equally subscribe to the belief that disclosing your number of ex-partners is the right move.

Gambling habits

Money is something nearly every couple argues about, which might be why one-in-ten men keep their visits to the bookies secret from their significant others.

Secret snacking

A quarter of women admitted to hiding their snacking habits from their partner, whereas only one in eight men say they keep this secret.

Romantic surprises

Men are more likely to hide something romantic from their partner than women. More than a third (37 percent) of British men have opted to lie to their partners about a surprise party or a romantic getaway. Only 26 percent of women have done the same.

See our infographic for a quick breakdown of the Valentine’s Day secrets.

Do you yearn for a completely honest and open relationship??

Try moving to the Midlands or East Anglia, as people from these regions keep the least amount of secrets from their partners. Northern Ireland on the other hand had the highest number of participants who admitted they keep relationship secrets.

When should you open the truth–floodgates and when should you hold back? Relationship expert Jo Barnett, who offers one-on-one relationship coaching packages, gives her advice on communicating in a relationship. She says: “To build your relationship I recommend that you practice your listening skills and spend time just listening and repeating back what your partner has said so that they feel heard and loved.

“The gift of listening is such a powerful tool, all of us want to be heard and understood, and when it’s done properly it can melt your heart.

“Surprise your partner with some flowers or theatre tickets, just when they are not expecting it. On a much smaller scale you can do little things for each other such as a cheeky message or a card left for them to open when you are not there.

“Relationships can become stagnant when you start to take each other for granted. To keep it alive you need to keep working together and being as thoughtful and loving as you were in the beginning.”