In the age of WikiLeaks and social media, the harsh truth is that nothing is really secret anymore. You can swear someone to keep things private—but chances are, unless you make them sign a nondisclosure agreement, once you say something, it’s out there. And once it is? Well, it sucks. What’s worse is when you share something deeply personal with someone you’re intimate with and they tell multiple people—who then tell multiple other people. Somehow your personal life becomes just as public as who wins the current season of The Bachelor.
In other words, it’s Corinne v. Taylor five-alarm-level annoying. What’s even more deflating is that unless you’re caught in the crosshairs of someone else’s deception, other people don’t view it as a big deal. Gossip is seen as…kind of harmless As a society, we have become so hungry for juicy nuggets of information that we forget whom we’re hurting by consuming it in the first place.
In the latest episode of The Big Bang Theory, the characters confront this very situation head on. Amy Farrah Fowler had to deal with the fallout of her boyfriend revealing intimidate details of their personal life to friends, colleagues, and even a stranger. Not only was Sheldon telling people—including the lunch lady—about their sex life, but that he and Amy only have sex once a year.
In the case of Shamy, an annual date with coitus can only be fully understood by the two of them. No one else. No matter how close Sheldon is to his other colleagues, there are certain things that have to remain private. If not for his sake, then certainly Amy’s. Because there’s nothing worse than having to admit to something you’re not fully prepared to lay out for what seems like all the world to know. If the two people in a relationship don’t respect certain privacy boundaries, then it feels like a betrayal.
Sheldon learned the hard way, when Amy immediately shut him down and refused to accept a quick apology. “It’s humiliating!” she exclaimed. “Thanks to you, my colleagues are gossiping about our sex life.” Sheldon—being a complete moron—couldn’t understand why that was such a bad thing. “This isn’t fair,” he remarked. “You’ve discussed aspects of our physical relationship with Penny!” Countered Amy: “That’s different. She’s a close friend—not the lady in the cafeteria who cuts the crusts of your sandwiches!”
Although Sheldon later came around in a way only Sheldon can, their fight brought up something else important: how crucial it is to communicate with your SO about what’s for public consumption with friends and what isn’t. Although Sheldon should have known better than to blab about his sex life, people don’t think sometimes.
Assuming someone knows what to do in the most common of situations is the equivalent of leaving your credit card at a bar and expecting someone to return it. You hope they will, but we all know that’s not often the case. So, yeah, while Sheldon should never have been so open about something so personal, Amy needed to realize he’s the kind of guy that needs to be given boundaries and instructions—yes, even when it comes to what’s basic common sense.
A new episode of The Big Bang Theory airs next Thursday at 8 P.M. ET on CBS.