Social Question

msbauer's avatar

Do you expect your love letter to be kept private by the recipient?

Asked by msbauer (420points) March 30th, 2010

When you send a love letter disclosing your personal feelings to someone, is it assumed that the recipient of that letter should keep it SECRET and never share it with anyone else?

A friend and I are having this discussion…

He says: You know the risks of sending a love letter when you write it and should feel secure enough with your feelings about that person to not care if others see your letter.

I say: Those are your private feelings that you expect will only be seen by the eyes of the recipient. If that person shows others the letter, they have violated the trust between you two.


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34 Answers

wonderingwhy's avatar

I’ve yet to find any problem with someone other than the person I’m in love with knowing it. I’m in love with them! What’s there to be ashamed about? Now if it’s a dirty letter on the other hand…

newbrilliance's avatar

If the person is someone you really trust, I don’t see the harm in sharing the letter.

mrentropy's avatar

It’s a matter of privacy more than a matter of pride. I would expect anything I write to be at least semi-private if I’m putting it in a letter. Otherwise, why not write it on a postcard?

Unless it’s such a soul shatteringly good love letter and it can do someone some good, then I’d expect it to be private.

cak's avatar

It’s a private letter, it should not be shared – unless you have prior consent. However, not all people see correspondence as something that should be kept private…to me, shame on them!

What my husband and I write to each other, is between each other. I may generalize something, just as he may do the same; however, I would never, ever tell the true details of private correspondence.

I have no problem with people knowing how much I love him, but if I wanted people to know what I write down and leave for him to enjoy – I would have just said it out loud.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Yes,it is a private thing that deserves a public AK if shared with

CMaz's avatar

I like when my love letters are shared with others.

I write a good love letter.

Trillian's avatar

I wish I could remember who said this; “Never commit anything to paper that you don’t want to be read by everyone.” Paraphrased, I’m sure I don’t have the exact quote. Trust is too easily given, and too easily abused. Think carefully before you write anything that you don’t want others to see.

TheOnlyException's avatar

Your friend has a point. But you should trust the recipient of that love letter enough that he/she will not show it to every Tom, Dick or Harry who walks by. But as i said your friend has a point. If you are secure enough in your feelings, you should be shouting it from the rooftops not writing it down in clandestine love letters.

Idknown's avatar

If you are writing it to your SO – then it will likely be kept private enough. If you are declaring your love to some person – I wouldn’t expect it as much…

kevbo's avatar

Wow. Funny how with think we lost privacy with digital communication.

I bet more than a handful of my old love letters were read by others. Fuck… I even had one become the talk of the office!

jbfletcherfan's avatar

I would never want my letters to be shared, nor would I dream of sharing with someone else anything sent to me. It’s private, between the two people involved. Anything else is an invasion of privacy & a betrayal.

Exhausted's avatar

Did you send the letter to someone you are already involved with or was it a proclaimation of your affection for someone you want to be involved with? Either way I think it to be an intimate act and should not be shared. If someone shares it with others they are not showing respect for the intimacy between you.

msbauer's avatar

@Exhausted it actually was a letter sent to me as a proclamation of affection (from a guy i’m not involved with). i was debating over the ethics of sharing it with a close friend of mine.

cak's avatar

@Exhausted – you have it right…it’s an act of intimacy! That is what my little pea brain was looking for!

Exhausted's avatar

The reason I asked about the level of the relationship is because I can see how if you (or I was thinking he) were not in an actual relationship, it might be easier to not feel badly about sharing the contents of the letter. Even though you may not feel a sense of intimacy with this person, they were feeling it when they sent the letter. Put yourself in his position and think of how you would feel if he showed it to someone else. He is sitting somewhere, anxiously awaiting your reaction. Imagine how he would feel if he knew you were showing it to others. Whether or not you are interested in him, the classy thing to do is to keep the contents between you and him.

wilma's avatar

Love letters should be kept private.
I would be very hurt and feel violated if my intimate thoughts to a lover were shown to other people.
Even if the person receiving the letter does not feel the same way about the writer that she/he feels about her/him, then the receiver should protect the writers feelings and keep it private.

Exhausted's avatar

and @ChazMaz, I like you! (or at least your comments….lol)

wilma's avatar

Do people still write love letters? I thought they just used text messaging.
I haven’t received a good love letter in many years….sigh

CMaz's avatar

A text message love letter?

Now it all makes sense.

wilma's avatar

Well @ChazMaz I would not consider a text message a love letter, but I think some of the younger folks might.
and I am curious about your love letter writing, since it’s so good, care to share?

Pandora's avatar

I think it all depends on what the love letter says. I have some love letters that were written to me from my husband and I read some to the kids when they were young. Of course I would leave out the really personal stuff. My motive at the time was to show the kids another side of their dad. Sometimes they just thought him unfeeling when he lay down the law with the kids. He would also include how much he loved the kids and what we all meant to him.
Loving someone should never be considered a shameful thing. Now if the letter is a little seedy, than that definetly should be kept private. Sometimes the reciepent of the letter wants others to see what a special person the writer is, especially if they don’t understand your connection. And sometimes you just want to share the joy the letter brings you so others share in your joy. Like personal wedding vows.

CMaz's avatar

@wilma – Nothing in my office computer. I will see what I have at home.

Or you will just have to inspire me. ;-)

davidbetterman's avatar

…is it assumed that the recipient of that letter should keep it SECRET and never share it with anyone else?”

You should never assume. If you want it kept private, you should ask that it not be disclosed, or just whisper sweet nothings and refrain from writing the letter.

mangeons's avatar

I think if in the distant future, someone wants to share a love letter sent to them with a friend, SO, child, or anyone else, that’s fine. But I don’t think that you should show someone a letter if they would know who the sender was and possibly tease them about it.

CMaz's avatar

Love should be shared.

Brenna_o's avatar

I think there is no problem sharing your feelings about your partner with the world.. As long as its nothing dirty like wat you want to do in bed I see no problem with it. If you love someone make it known to the world, your mate will/should feel loved :)

wilma's avatar

Oh my! @ChazMaz shared, and he is correct.
He does write a good love letter.
and I’m not sharing

casheroo's avatar

Yes, I would expect my husband to keep it private. He is a private person, and I could never imagine him sharing such a thing.

deni's avatar

I wouldn’t mind if he mentioned it to a close friend or said something very vague about it to them. but i would not like someone else flat out reading the whole thing. uh uh.

PacificToast's avatar

I think it’s for the person only. Unless it’s so amazingly clever that it’s to be published in a major magazine.

YARNLADY's avatar

Some people have very strong feelings about privacy, and some people are very open and sharing. If you are not a good match with the one you love, it could lead to problems. I am the open and sharing kind, so it wouldn’t bother me.

escapedone7's avatar

I’m a private person and would prefer my feelings be respected, but I am a realist. I know some will do it anyway regardless of my feelings. That usually changes how I feel about them and they lose my trust.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

If it’s written by a person whom you didn’t share the same feeling with, then it shouldn’t be shared. That leaves the person too exposed.

meagan's avatar

I would expect my love letter to be shared if I’m dating a teenager.

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