Background Today mental health is embedded in a discourse of disclosure. Many people with lived experience of mental illness have decided to move out of the closet to talk about their personal experiences. Aims To look at the context of disclosure and on the questions of why disclose and for whom. How much do we know and how does our knowledge correspond with today's discourse of disclosure in mental health? Methods Narrative reviewing today's discourse of disclosure on the basis of both scientific and experience-based knowledge as well as from my personal experience. Results The scientific and experience-based knowledge of the benefits and costs of disclosure is limited, but points to mixed results and many risks on a personal level. At the same time, it leaves us with several unanswered questions. Conclusions There is a need to always define the context of disclosure and to make professionals aware of different disclosure strategies and respond to the dilemmas. It is also crucial to emphasise that the planning and patterns of disclosure belong to the person with lived experience of mental illness and nobody else.