What Does Spitzer Teach Us About Sharing Information?

While staying away from some of the issues around Spitzer, there is one that I found very interesting.  How does someone spend $4,000 (or $80,000) total without their spouse knowing?  I guess maybe when you have too much money that can happen.  I talked with 10 of my friends about it and in general they typically had shared accounts where many of them had their wife helping or managing the bills.  (My wife manages everything for us…thank goodness.)

But, it brought a question to my mind which is how much information and when do people share with their spouses about their health conditions.

  • When you’re dating, should you disclose all your medical conditions?  What about your family history?
  • When you’re diagnosed, how quickly does the average spouse disclose that information to their family?  How does this vary by disease?
  • And, what happens in the future when you can get a genomics test to tell you what diseases you are genetically prone to get?  Should you disclose that to a future spouse and at what point?

They were showing 23andMe on the Today Show a few days ago where you could pay $1,000 to get a test done that showed you your likelihood of getting certain diseases.  It also showed you interesting things like where your ancestors were from and whether you tasted bitter things or sweet things.  It is worth going to their site and looking at, but it brings lots of interesting questions to the table.  Do you get your kids tested?  Once you have the information, can you influence the future or do you take a fatalistic view of having no control?

23andme.jpg

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