Recently, during a time of great turbulence and tumult, I found myself morphing into a liar. And a pretty deft one, at that. I lied to my ex about my new boyfriend, and I lied to my new boyfriend about my ex. I lied to my family about both of them, and I lied to myself about how long this house of cards could continue to stand. I lied to my friends, too, whether that meant strategically omitting details, or fabricating new ones.
When a friend’s simple observation (“It’s just easier to tell the truth”) finally sunk in, I began to unravel my knotted web, and to start acting with integrity and honesty. And I feel a whole lot better. But interestingly enough, I had dinner with that same ex last night, and he’s now lying to his current girlfriend about me! Where does it end?
The truth (I promise!) is that we lie for many different reasons. We lie to protect our or others’ feelings, to maintain an image or reputation, and because sometimes it’s the path of least resistance.
Looking for more about lies, lying, and liars? Here’s a list, to get you started:
Out of Character: Surprising Truths about the Liar, Cheat, Sinner (and Saint) Lurking in all of us, by David DeSteno
The Liar in your Life: the Way to Truthful Relationships, by Robert S. Feldman
How to Spot a Liar: Why People don't Tell the Truth... and How you Can Catch Them, by Gregory Hartley
When Your Lover is a Liar: Healing the Wounds of Deception and Betrayal, by Susan Forward
To be Perfectly Honest: One Man's Year of Living Almost Truthfully Could Change your Life - No Lie, by Phil Callaway