There comes a time when children learn to keep secrets. Whether this is a good or questionable thing will be determined by the very nature of the secret.
I remember my mother reading Milly-Molly-Mandy stories to my sister, I listen on the fringes of the couch– it was a girl‗s book–and wondering at the goodness of young Milly.
It confounded me that even in secret-keeping she validated her integrity, motivated to hide the truth in order to keep others ignorant of some kindness or pleasant thing she had prepared for them; never for naughty behavior, willed or otherwise. The thrill of surprising others with some benefit to them is most definitely a healthy and happy reason to keep a secret.
There is no fear or sadness attached, no grievous consequence when discovered.
However, this was not my childhood experience. For myself, and most children I’ve known, secrets were a symptom of fear; a calculated decision to conceal what, most assuredly, would invite miserable penalty if discovered.