Those of you who say no, how do people take it when you refuse to give them a recipe?
Depends on the recipe. Most of the recipes I refuse to give out are my 'kitchen witchery' recipes, which include recipes for bath products, cold medicine, etc... I don't give them out because, well, I've unfortunately seen what happens when someone with a lack of herbal knowledge uses stuff incorrectly, and I NEVER want to feel responsible for something like that ever again. I'll share the harmless stuff (like the face masks), but my hyssop cough suppressant or sage incense? No. I've even reached the point with some of my recipes that you have to okay it with your doctor before I will make it for you.
And some of those I do sell the results, so I'm absolutely not going to hand over the recipe to anyone who wants it.
Others, I respond, 'I got it from this cookbook, you can purchase it here'. And others are very personal to me, and if you aren't someone I'm willing to give a handmade quilt to, you probably aren't someone I'm willing to hand one of those recipes over to.
I'd really be interested in knowing not so much the "theories" behind those of you who don't share recipes, but what actually goes through your head when you are face to face with a friend or neighbor and tell them "NO". Do you feel a little bad? Do you feel a rush of superiority? A sense of victory? A small feeling of power and control in a world gone mad?
To be absolutely blunt - Because I don't like giving into people like you.
I just can't see any legitimate reason (other than being sworn by the person who gave it to you, or avoiding copyright infringement) not to share a recipe with someone who is genuinely interested in it.
You've been given many legitimate reasons. Your desire to have your own way is not our problem. Frankly, if you expressed this attitude after I told you 'I prefer not to give that recipe out', you'd be told to leave my home and never return again.