why do people lie?

People lie for a variety of reasons:

  • They dont want to hurt someone

Although this can seem altruistic if we look at the kernel of truth in this statement, the reality is that they do not want to get into trouble themsleves. A perfect example of this is the cheating spouse who doesnt fess up to their affair to "protect" their beloved.

  • They are ashamed of their behaviour and cant face it themselves

This happens in adults and children a like. For example when you have finished the last piece of cake that belonged to another member of the family and when asked where is the cake? you say "I dont know!" knowing full well that you ate it!

  • They are trying to impress someone

This is the type of lying that occurs when on a first date and these people are sometimes known as braggards. They are lying about how much they earn what they are worth and how much they spent on their car. This is often done by people who have low self esteem.

  • They have had that type of behaviour modelled by parents

Children who have seen lying behaviour modelled to them by parents and other people in powerful positions, do what they do best... mimic it. Especially when the person in power appears to get their needs met with this behaviour.

  • They want something from the person they are lying to

This can happen in many different situations. Like when a wife asks a husband "Do I look nice?" and the husband answers "You look lovely dear". Knowing fullwell that she does not. He does this for a variety of reasons, one of them being that if he tells the truth is wife may be angry with him and he may not get fed!

  • It is cultural

In Asia not losing face is seen as paramount... Sometimes the truth and losing face come into conflict. For example when you go to pick up your washing and the cleaner says "I cant find it" come back in 2 hrs and we will have it. All the while knowing that the washing has not actually been done, but in 2 hrs it will be ready for pick up.

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Sun-Girl 5 years ago from Nigeria

Awesome and very important article you actually shared in here which i agreed with all you said in here and am voting this work up.

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