Laurent Schmitt

Secret The role of secrecy throughout human life Publication date : May 17, 2017

Laurent Schmitt is a clinical psychiatrist, a professor at the Rangueil Faculty of Medicine at the Paul Sabatier University in Toulouse, and an associate professor at the University of Sherbrooke in Canada. He coordinates the central psychiatric service of Toulouse hospitals. He published Time for Oneself in 2012 and The Ball of Egos in 2014.
Today, transparency seems to have become an essential requirement. The recommended attitude seems to be: tell all, leave nothing in the shadows and no-one in the dark. Talking about oneself, posting one's private life on social networks, has become a widespread practice.
Contrary to this trend in which everything must be said, what is the role of secrecy? Isn't secrecy useful, even indispensable, to our psychological survival?
Based on patient case studies gathered in consultation, Laurent Schmitt shows how, under certain conditions, psychological, intimate or secret activities help us to stay alive and not sink into depression. Much has been said about the burden of transgenerational secrets, but secrecy can also protect us. There are secrets that play an particular role in the trajectory of our lives.
Laurent Schmitt offers an urgent reflection on the secret of psychological intimacy, in reaction to the current tendency to exteriorize everything.