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Am I A Pathological Liar?

Updated on April 26, 2012
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Beautiful Rochester!

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A little about my background.....

I graduated with my MD/PHD in Psychiatry from MMS (Mayo Medical School) in Rochester, Minnesota. Living in Rochester was a blast - Money Magazine deems it the top city in the world to live. Rochester is darling with it's eclectic mix of art, entertainment, theater and shopping in the city. The greenest lawns roll out into sleepy suburbs surrounding the metropolis. Being located in the Midwest means it has four seasons each year, of which I never tired. I lived at the southwest end on 6th street near the historic district.

I did my dissertation on Pathological liars. I have interviewed people such as Bill Clinton, Sarah Palin, John Lovett and James Frey. I hung out with Lea Thompson and Emily Sandberg (both famous actresses). They begged me to go into the movie business but I was much more interested in studying the human mind. I miss them a lot though - and all the fun we had shopping, partying and traveling. We would often jet off on Friday and head off to Tahiti where Lea kept her yacht. I dated a prince for a time - but I promised to never reveal his identity. We knew that we could never be together forever so we savored what time we had, I don't regret a thing! I know what lucky a girl I am.

My dissertation was nominated for a Pulitzer - it was so exciting I didn't even care if it won. What an honor! I learned every detail about pathological liars and my research was ground breaking. I discovered exactly which center of the brain causes people to lie and a drug was developed to block those particular receptors in the brain. This is breaking news and you can tell everyone you heard it here first. There is now a cure for pathological liars!

Rochester, MN

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"The eyes are the gateway to the soul." ~Herman Melville

To be honest now....

Did you believe any of that? Possibly all of it? Every single sentence above is a complete lie. I have never even been to Rochester. That is how pathological liars work. They will tell you small bits of truth embellished with tall tales. Everything is exaggerated. These types of liars do not need a reason to lie. They do not need a reward in any sense of the word. They just lie like other people breathe air.

Pathological liars do know they are lying most of the time. If you caught them in a lie they would feel no need to apologize. They might tell another lie to cover up or validate the first lie, not caring that you both don't believe it. They are not embarrassed to be caught in lies either. They have the ability to look you in the eye and begin weaving even more fantastic webs.

He tells it like it is!

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Are you a liar?

One of the most common reasons people lie are fear driven factors. Everyone has heard "the truth hurts" and by experience we know it does - we don't want to hurt other people's feelings so it is impossible to NEVER lie. Everyone lies from time to time. I would notice at different work places - when a person makes a mistake they immediately try to justify why it happened and for fear of getting fired - this person may decide to lie to save their hide. I would consider that self preservation. Those lies are based on the need to survive and fear.

It is normal to lie from time to time, but what about a person who lies all the time? Do you lie about everything? Do you lie about trivial matters such as, "what is your favorite food?" Do you lie as a matter of convenience and often forget all the lies you have already told people? Do you lie and not even understand why you are lying? If you answered yes to one or more of those questions you might be a pathological liar!

Pathological liars will lie - and they usually do know they are lying and have intent. Even if the liar knows in advance they will have negative consequences they will still continue to lie. Pathological lying is habitual for these people - it IS their coping skill to help them get through life. Feelings of low self esteem could be a precursor - they don't feel good enough about their own accomplishments. The answer is to just make themselves look better in your mind's eye by making up more exciting things.

It is normal to tell those small, harmless lies such as "noooooOOOooo that dress does not make you look fat!" Most people feel guilt when they tell lies, even small ones. The pathological liar does not really care about the facades they create or the consequences of telling lies. They do not think about how distructive this behavior can be to others.

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Famous lies told on television.

What Causes It?

If you are a pathological liar - it is not your fault. These type of liars tend to have more white matter in their brain and less gray matter. The significance of this is that the white matter in the brain is involved in neurotransmitters and in essence, they have more networks or pathways from the brain to make up lies. Lying is not done without effort - in fact it takes thought and planning to lie. The cognitive processes in the brain help liars to fabricate the lies.

The pre-frontal cortex is part of the brain that is involved in morals and feelings of remorse. The pathological liar often has more activity going on in this region. Structures in the brain are found to be different with an increase of up to approximately 25.7 percent more white matter than the normal human brain. They have been found to have approximately 14% less gray matter in the brain. Pathological liars tend to have a mental illness more frequently than other types of liars.

Compulsive lying can be more of an impulse disorder that is believed to be caused by chemical imbalances in the brains (such as serotonin) or it can be stemmed in childhood development. The cause is debated. One thing that seems to be a common belief among psychologists is that the compulsive liar doesn't always realize they are lying. Treatment with some different drugs have been found to be effective for some of these patients.

Lying can be rooted in childhood. Low self-esteem is a common factor. A child may have come from a home where lying was necessary to survival. Thoughts of telling the truth may cause fear or it feels awkward or uncomfortable to be honest so it is developed earlier in their childhood.

Sociopaths often lie for a reason and they have a goal. Anti-social personalities tend to lie for a benefit of some kind. Not necessarily for monetary rewards either.

Pseudologia Fantastica (mythomania) is also another term coined for liars. These type of liars make up fantasies and they tend to even believe these lies themselves. Their lies can be based on small bits of reality and they are not hallucinations or delusions - they know they are lying although this can present as False Memory Syndrome as well. (The liar believes their own lies). This falls along the lines of daydreaming and it tends to be a mix of fact and fiction.

Faces of a Liar

The Signs of a Liar...

There are many similarities that liars have in common. These are a few traits that correlate with lying. While you can not ever be sure a person you don't know well is lying - these may be tells to watch out for.

  • Disguised smiling
  • Lack of head movements
  • Pauses in speech such as "uh...oh...ummm"
  • Body movements are incongruent with what they are saying, such as - if they say yes and bob their head no? It's a clue that it could be a lie.
  • Increase in the pitch of their voice
  • Increase in fidgeting and hand gestures
  • Body language experts agree that liars tend to often touch or rub their necks, cheeks, face as if comforting themselves through the lie.
  • They may scratch their heads or other body parts frequently during a lie
  • They do sometimes lack eye contact - but they often look directly into the eyes of the person they are lying right after they tell the lie as if they are "checking" to see if the lie is being bought.
  • Pathological liars tend to have increased verbal skills but lower educational skills.
  • If a person looks up and to the right - that is indicative of lying behavior (they are looking toward the brain center that is thinking in essence)
  • If a person looks up and to the left - it is where memories live in the mind...so they are remembering rather than improvising.
  • If a person places an object (such as their briefcase on the table) between themselves and the person they are talking to - this is another tell. It is a way they tend to build barriers between themselves and the person they are lying to.
  • Arms crossed, tightly closed hands? Signs of a liar.
  • Leaning back when speaking may be a tell - they are putting distance between themselves and the person they are lying to.
  • Eyes are shifty - darting from place to place.
  • Liars forget the lies they have told so they often contradict themselves.

What to do?

There is no cure for pathological lying. Therapy, and most likely long term, might help but these people usually do not seek treatment. If you must work with someone who lies this way you may want to try to avoid them. Lies can be terribly devestating and destructive to people but confrontation will usually do little to curb the need for that person to stop lying. It is a habitual security blanket they will reach for each time they are not in their comfort zone. Telling the truth is much easier than lying because it is a true memory. Lies are fabricated and much harder to recall.

NOTE: If you read the first paragraph and skipped to the end - please know that everything in the first capsule is a lie! I repeat - I lied like there was no tommorrow and it was hard work. And for goodness sakes don't believe everything you hear!

A Million Pathetic Lies

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  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Anna McGann - oh please - don't worry about promoting your hub - I encourage it! Especially since it correlates to mine! You make another hub and I'll link you in:).

    Generally. You shouldn't do that (oromote your own work in another hub) I've seen it done plenty and from those who know better sometimes. You won't get in trouble:) I'm impressed you figured it out so quickly! That's great for being so new! Let me know when you're finished so I will be sure to see it!!

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    Anna McGann 5 years ago

    Oops (possibly). I submitted a comment here that invited you to read a future article on my page, and I've since looked at the forums and am now not sure that I was allowed to to do that. I really was not trying to promote my content--rather, I wrote the article as a response to a question posted above (which was too long to fit in here as a comment), and I just offered it because it was my answer to the question. I'm sorry about that. I only signed up this evening and I do not yet know the rules.

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    Anna McGann 5 years ago

    Hi Real Housewife, I enjoyed your article, and as much as you say you struggled with that first part, you did an amazing job of mimicking what a real pathological liar's lies might sound like. About the question asked by Daughter of Maat... Well, I started to reply to that here, and it quickly turned into an answer so long that my word limit actually got cut off so I figured I'd just make it an article instead. It still needs editing but if you're interested I do invite you check it out in a few days since I did get the inspiration from here after all. :) Cheers!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Daughter of Maat - thank you so much!

    I think pathological lying does have to do with psychopathy but I am not sure of how it all works together - it is really interesting!

  • Daughter Of Maat profile image

    Melissa Flagg COA OSC 5 years ago from Rural Central Florida

    This was a fantastic hub. I wonder if pathological lying has anything to do with psychopathy?

    Voted up and shared. Great stuff.

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey JThomp42 - thank you so much!

    Oh man...My oldest sister married one - omg! It was so crazy - he would just tell the fattest lies! My dad would get so mad! Haha! And as soon as he left - we would start the conversation with the biggest lie we just heard and keep adding to it:) lol. They got divorced after about a year - finally she figured it out:) haha! It was like 20 years ago so it's easy to laugh about now:)

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Lisa - oh I lie too. Just not very much - and according to my husband I sholdn't lie often because he says it is SO obvious! haha! I guess I feel so uncomfortable about it - I give myself away:) haha

    Thank you so much for reading and commenting:)

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    JThomp42 5 years ago

    This was so interesting!! I've known a couple of them myself. And a couple of family members as well. They would just lie to start a conversation. Oh, I was also married to one. If you catch them dead to rights they will argue and get furious that you even had the nerve to doubt them? I do believe some even convince themselves they are telling the truth. GREAT HUB!! Voted up. :)

  • donabhatt profile image

    donabhatt 5 years ago from Hyderabad

    Wonderful write up...I have few such person who lies unnecessarily,but never knew how to define their lie. But now got to know everything from your hub. It was nice to know so many important facts.......

  • Lisas-thoughts101 profile image

    Lisas-thoughts101 5 years ago from Northeast Texas

    I felt relatively certain anywhere in Minnesota couldn't be the best city in the country in which to live :). That was my first clue. You did great, however. Pathological liars are scary. Especially when they are sociopaths. You can live with them for years and have no idea how many lies they tell and just how well they tell them. I don't exclude myself from lying, just not to that extent. I voted up, interesting and awesome. Great hub!

    Lisa

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Virtual Treasures - I was just about to come over and check you out! Thanks for the link!

    I love this stuff, don't you? People and personality never get boring to me!

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    Virtual Treasures 5 years ago from Michigan

    Great hub! I have linked to your hubs on several of mine. We seem to have similar interests! https://hubpages.com/health/Sociopathic-Tendencies...

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Myth - you are such a sweet heart and right - who doesn't lie? right - ???? Who doesnt' do that stuff? LOL And besides - what the heck could you have ever lied about that was all that important? You only did 2 sit ups instead of 10? Cut cher self some slack! Darrel is one lucky dawg to have YOU too!!

  • mythicalstorm273 profile image

    mythicalstorm273 5 years ago

    Well who doesn't do that type of stuff? Okay I do not smoke or drink, but it is because I do not like the taste or smell... but other than that... who doesn't do that stuff? lol. But still thank you. You may have just made my day!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Oh shit Crystal! Lol. No no no girl - I do bad stuff all the time! I curse, I smoke, I drink, I think real bad thoughts sometimes:) lol. You are human - but you are always on the right track. You learn from your mistakes - many people do NOT! You need to learn to forgive yourself for silly little things that no longer matter. Like telling lies...you don't now! Lol

    Besides - being a sales person - they want you to lie! They would have given you a raise and called it thinking on your feet! Lol

  • mythicalstorm273 profile image

    mythicalstorm273 5 years ago

    To tell you the truth I actually got so good at lying that I remembered my biggest lies! The little ones if I forgot and somebody caught me lying I was usually capable of lying to cover them up in a very convincing way. I was just that good at it. I find if I want to be I am still very good at it. I make an excellent sales floor person because of it... if I do not know something that the customer asks I can make something up without missing a beat. Also I am fairly intelligent so my lies often make sense which is I think is what makes them so convincing and so easy to remember. Still I am grateful for Darrel everyday because without him I would probably easily go back into my lying streak, but I try to stay honest for him. I try to continue to try!

    Also I am young and I try everyday to become a better person, but it doesn't matter what your age. Barbergirl is a little older than me and she is an amazing person who is constantly trying to improve herself (through exercise and positive attitude) and you are a little older than me and you are one of the most amazing people I have ever talked to! I do not even know of what you could improve on because every time I talk to you I see no faults! Maybe I need to learn from you ;-)

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Myth - you are an amazing girl! It takes so much courage to admit that you have lied. Everyone does though it does sound like you were using it as a coping mechanism. It's like you used it, until it didn't work anymore. I am so glad that Darrel had the good sense to see that if he just pointed it out - you might reflect and try to do something positive. I like that guy!

    Lying is tricky because really we are taught to do it to be nice. So it is hard to know when it is appropriate and when it isn't when your young. So I can see it being totally something that starts small and gets out of hand. When I was little, my mom used to tell me that story about the boy who cried wolf. She would say if you tell one lie then you will have to tell another to cover it up, pretty soon you can't remember what the truth is. I bet that it happens all the time! It is the easiest way to get around telling harsh truths too - so it is an easy resort.

    Plus you aren't all that old myth! lol So as always - I know you are on the path to a superior being:)

  • mythicalstorm273 profile image

    mythicalstorm273 5 years ago

    I will tell you a secret... I used to be a pathological liar! Okay maybe I wasn't that bad, but I was pretty bad. I learned to bite my tongue when I was quite young so that I would not get involved in fights. After that it became easy to agree or lie instead of bite my tongue and from there elaborate stories became common. I had friends who had no idea who I was because I would only tell them lies. It felt more comfortable and I felt more free. It got so bad that I stopped realizing when I was lying and often started feeling like I was telling the truth. That was until I met my boyfriend Darrel. He got mad at me because he caught my lies as nobody had before. He started noticing that I lied about EVERYTHING! It had become such a horrible habit and I knew that I wanted to change. But it took so much hard work! Over 5 years later and although I lie much less often, there are still times where I find I slip because it is easier to tell a lie than to tell the truth or to say nothing at all. Because of this background I found this hub of particular interest. Lying has become very common and many people do not question what has been said, but it is much more serious than many people even know. When a person is a pathological liar it hurts them and those around them. It is a problem and an addiction that few can get out of if they even notice the problem. You do an amazing job, but you do not mention how difficult it is on that person. You mention how it can be a disorder, but I know from experience that it is so much more than many people ever think about. Plus it can be dangerous as well! Anyway... great hub and for me personally it was something that reminded me of what I constantly struggle with everyday and that is a good thing so that I can continue to improve!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi amymarie - Wow! I know I have done a lot of research about this but it still amazes me when I hear about another person who lies like that! lol They are everywhere I guess:) It is crazy how some people can just make stuff up and expect you to buy it too. I mean what are the choices? It isn't worth arguing with those kind of people because they will just forget it and lie some more! Amazing your old friend could think he could even make stuff up when he hasn't seen you! lol Hey that is how they roll! Thank you so much!

  • amymarie_5 profile image

    amymarie_5 5 years ago from Chicago IL

    I dated someone back in highschool who was a pathological liar. He would like about the dumbest things and it was so fustrating because you'd catch him but he'd never admit he was lying. Like you said he'd stick to his story and make up more lies. Years later I ran into a mutual school friend of ours. He had recently stopped talking to him. After all these years he hasn't changed, even came up with a few stories about me, even though I haven't seen him in over a decade!

    Found this very interesting. Rated up, useful and interesting!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Mo - you liar! You are not lying! lol Your lie radar is pretty good - I am not from St. Louis originally:) I am from Nebraska! ha! I haven't lived there in a very long time though. Thank you so much:)

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    HI Stephanie! Oh Well thanks - you gave me way too much credit! Yeah - I figured going to Tahiti might raise a few eyebrows for a Hub writer:) haha! Interesting point about IQ - I do think some of them are pretty smart - but they do have problems keeping up with lies - and they don't care. Some of them can sustain lies and whole lives for years though! Craziness! Thank you again!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi John - thank you so much! I had a lot of laughs myself writing this one. It is so odd to sit down and purposefully make up a whole life of lies! I changed stuff quite a few times:) I do think it is interesting and so funny!

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    Motown2Chitown 5 years ago

    I lie about everything....including the fact that I didn't like this hub! :P

    Totally wonderful and interesting as all get out! I KNEW you weren't from St. Louis!

  • Stephanie Henkel profile image

    Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA

    Oh, you had me until you jetted off to Tahiti...I'm a pretty trusting person, but the BS meter does kick in eventually!

    Some pathological liars are so slick at lying that it's really hard to prove when they are lying. I think that we unconsciously pick up some of the other signals and body language that tells us they are lying, and makes us distrust everything they say. It is hard to work or have social contact with people who lie for no reason. I found it really interesting that there are actually differences in the brains of pathological liars. Are there differences in IQ, also? I wonder if they need higher IQs to keep track of their lies?

    Fascinating hub! Voted up...REALLY!

  • John Sarkis profile image

    John Sarkis 5 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

    Hi RealHousewife, this is hysterical to say the very least; I'm laughing so hard right now I can hardly write!

    Additionally, what a gorgeous quote by Melville who happens to be one of my favorite authors.

    Voted funny

    John

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi one2get2no! Love your screen name!

    Everyone lies - and I can't even remember the statistic but we all lie and many times each day. It's normal and there are so many times when being honest - just ain't right! Lol. For instance I know people that say "I never lie! I always tell the truth!". I do know a few people who will come right out and say stuff like "yes you look fat in that dress" and maybe they say "I'm just a very honest person!!" I say - they just have an excuse to be an asshole. Sorry but that's a truth:). I notice those "super HONEST people, often have few friends.

    Malicious lies - that is another story and yeah - not nice either! I'm sure your a much happier person than many - you sound very normal to me! Haha! Thanks so much!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Saday - thank you so much!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    hi Sharyn! Lol. Yeah I know YOU would know those were great big fat lies! Haha! Did you think I'd gone the rest of the way round the bend? Haha!

    It IS sad they can't be cured...I do always wish there were cures for every ail but it isn't so in this case. I know these liars are so good they believe it themselves...and expect us to also. But ...interesting that they say they do know they are lying...most of the time. So idk it's weird. I hate feeling like someone is lying to me - and I'm pretty sensitive to that stuff - I have radar! When people lie - it's written all over their faces:) these people can fool anyone though!

  • one2get2no profile image

    Philip Cooper 5 years ago from Olney

    I actually believed that first paragraph. I believe everything I hear because I basically trust people. Probably that has been my weakness in life. I do lie too but always so as to not to hurt or worry someone. I've never told a malicious lie. So I guess I'm not a pathological liar. Great hub and voted up!

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    saday 5 years ago from India

    Nice post. Voted up and interesting.

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    Sharon Smith 5 years ago from Northeast Ohio USA

    It is sad to me that pathological liars cannot be cured. I am sure I was in a relationship with one and it is kind of creepy to think how this person could look me straight in the eyes and believe their own lies they were telling me and others. I learned a lot from your hub Kel, well written and informative. Of course, I loved your intro! But I know you pretty well, and no doubt some of those things you would have previously lied to me about, ha. So I did catch on quickly, but it sure was fun!

    Sharyn

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi DeborahNeyens - and thank you so much!

    I had a blast writing this one - oh I changed lies so many times! Lol. I knew I was getting more and more "out there"! But I know someone who is just like that! And the lies get grander and grander! Hilarious...but it really hard to go along with that stuff...and when someone is lying to you like that - it's like...hmmmmm....do I go along with it? I can hardly accuse them of being a liar! Lol. I think that would be rude! Haha! It's hard nit to laugh in their faces too...oh my! This person would say stuff like "I was hunting and I shot a turkey while it was in flight! Right through the eye - and it was my last arrow!" hahaha. I would feel sorry for the turkey - but I'm pretty sure that didn't happen! Lol

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    Deborah Neyens 5 years ago from Iowa

    What a great hub. I must admit, you had me going up until the yacht in Tahiti! This reminds me of a quote from the George Castanza character in Seinfeld, "It's not a lie if you believe it to be true." That's that scary thing about some pathological liars; I think they really do begin to believe themselves. By the way, I love that you included the body language of a liar. I am going to save this list and work some of these traits into my novel to show when a character is lying.

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi bravewarrior! Thank you so much!

    I had a blast making all that junk up - I am not gonna lie:) lol I knew that whole thing sounded kinda unbelievable! lol It was pretty hard to come up with some of it. I had to actually research some lies:) hahaha!

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    Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

    Interesting and very well written, especially the fabricated beginning! And I say that with my eyes shifted to the upper left! Ha ha. Seriously, you provide a very entertaining, well-written read. I was not tempted to click out!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Wow! Hi James - thank you SO much! I sincerely appreciate that comment. It helps people understand why others do it. I see what you're saying - you tell the harmless tyoe lies that at the end of the day - you feel makes no difference in another person's life? Lies that have no consequence? I find that very fascinating. See - we can look at it in a couple different ways:

    1 - we say - oh you're terrible! Lies are so very morally wrong! Or

    2 - you know what? Everyone lies so since they are harmless - it's fine!

    Then someone will come along and say - but you injure another persons trust! Not that might not carry weight in the value of a dollar translation - but none of the very important things ever do.

    It's great that you sort of bust yourself - and I make up lies to pull jokes on other people ALL the time...that's a joke (premeditated even) and not intended to ever harm...I've come up with some unbelievable whoopers too! I'm proud of myself for that! Lol. I think it is my writers nature too - to think of outrageous stuff! But there's an end to a joke - there's no end to lies usually.

    I think it's terrific that you recognize this when you are doing it too. Just realize lots of people do not understand this behavior as you do and it could cost you important relationships. Good luck to you!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Earthy Mother - too funny. No you aren't dumb at all - I really tried to think about how much a person who had never met me before - would believe. Imwas really counting on people sizing up my avatar and deciding "she looks normal"! Haha I tried to tell small lies - then grow them until I was stretching the imagination JUST enough for a person to have a tiny dot of doubt. Pathological liars operate just that way....and normal folks always want to give the benefit of the doubt!

    Thanks so much - I appreciate the read and comments so much:)

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    james-raterman 5 years ago

    I lie all the time. I am very clear with people that I know and tell them I am a liar. They know this and I lie to them anyway. I have tried to go an entire month without lying but found it impossible. You'll find the hardest things not to lie about is when you are trying to protect anothers feeling. Since then I realized lying is less about morality and more about whether you hurt someone with a lie. The lies that you talk tend not to be hurtful. They tend to be about ones accomplishments or places they've been and people they know. These lies tend not hurt anyone significantly at all. While if someone finds out that you were lying to spare there feelings and they find out how you really feel, well those lies tend to hurt people the most. Times I never lie: because there are rules and ethics in all of this 1.If someone asks me a direct question

    2.To conceal anything I've done 3. And 9 times out of ten I do not try to spare anyones feelings. Your not helping anyone but yourself most of the time when you spare anothers feelings. Your shying away from confrontation because it is more convenient for you not because another will be hurt by it. People are extrardinary creatures and tend to be able to bounce back fairly readily. I do tend to lie about myself though. I don't need to I just do. And if someone is even close to figuring the lie out I will tell them that I am lying. It is probably a fascination with me as a story teller. The better and more believable a lie I tell the more fascinated I am. I have created people, things places. One of my favorites was getting someone to believe that they just came out with blue roses and he should get some for his girfriend. When he figured out there was no such thing I was quite amused. And told him him the story of the blue rose and what it symbolized. So, Yes "I am liar" and this might be the only truthful thing I've said.

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    Earthy Mother 5 years ago from South East England

    I really believed all of what you wrote at the beginning of your hub! It just shows you how you can pull the wool over someone's eyes! I just kept looking at your profile pic and thinking "wow!". And then about Lea Thompson wanting you to join in with the movie business...another "Wow!" It didn't even cross my mind that you were lying...maybe I'm a bit dumb, or maybe you're just a great writer! :o)

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Drbj - think nothing of it but thank you! I am pretty sure that if people are interested in personality they would love to take those fun and really amazing tests of yours! I loved them so I'll just go ahead and thank you again - for letting me pass them along! More fun for everyone. Merci

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    drbj and sherry 5 years ago from south Florida

    Hi, Kelly, Forgive me for not noticing that you cited my personality hubs in this article. Mea culpa, mea culpa. Thank you, m'luv, you are much appreciated ... and that is NO lie!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi David! Well - at least I got ya for a second:) lol Happy belated April 1! lol Ahhh - my man Thought Sammies - ! I love that dog:) hahaha! I think that Writer20 - may also be from Nevada...pretty sure. She is a terrific poet!

    Hey thanks for - well everything:)

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    David Warren 5 years ago from Nevada

    You had me, at least for the first few sentences! I thought I was already following you from another hub I'd read. Who knows maybe to many pain meds, better late than never. Thought I was the only one here in Northern Nevada on hub pages until this morning, ThoughtSandwiches.... Anyway great hub voted up and awesome!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi CrisSp - ha! Well I am sure I know many people who knew I really was lying - that thought alone kept making me laugh while I wrote it...that and I made sure I got it done just in time for April 1! haha

    Thanks so much!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi GDiBiase - You have described a perfect sociopath! lol They often do tell so many lies, one on top of the other, they don't even remember "what" they told and "who" to...any more. The fascinating thing to me is that they really are not bothered or deterred by that! I mean, it's like "are we in the same bubble here?" hahaha!

    Thanks so much!

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    CrisSp 5 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

    I sense you were lying from the beginning of your hub. Lol! Very nicely put. I am sharing your hub in the hope that those liars may be enlightened, if not feel guilty. I personally know couple of them, no difference from a sociopath although I'm sure there's a lot of them everywhere. No cheers to lying!

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    GDiBiase 5 years ago from Portland, ME

    Hi RH, You had me hook, line and sinker, I got sucked into your web of lies. Great hub. I am seriously sure I worked with a woman who had an issue. I would always catch her in lies,she told so many different stories, sometimes I am not sure she knew whom she had told what or exactly what was the truth?

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi denisemai! Thank you very much! I did see that skit on SNL too - hilarious! I could not find a good clip because I wanted to include it! Lol. She is one of my favorites on the show now...she pulls off the humor so well! I also like the Target lady! Every time I'm at Target now I expect the cashier to jump up and down and shout "approved!" when my card goes through:) hahaha!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi meloncauli - I love your hub name! That is clever! Thanks so much for reading and the awesome comment! I really had fun writing this...never tried to lie in one paragraph so many times! Haha!

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    Denise Mai 5 years ago from Idaho

    Wow. I really enjoyed your article. Especially the part where you lied. It reminded me of that hilarious character, "Penelope", that Kristen Wig does on SNL. So funny. I really enjoyed the tells section as well. The looking up to the left or right is interesting. It's almost like having an angel and devil on either shoulder. To the right is the devil and to the left is the angel. I'll try to keep that in mind. So...long story short...I really liked reading your hub and look forward to more of your writing!

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    meloncauli 5 years ago from UK

    Excellent hub voted up. I really enjoyed reading this. Thanks

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Jeannie! Hey there - lol! Yeah remember - if it sounds too good to be true - it usually is:) I think this has been my very favorite to write - it was so crazy trying to think of stuff to lie about! In my family - lying was really frowned upon and my parents gave me the idea that weak people lie. It really bugs me - I can forgive someone for saying like "ya sorry I can't go out tonight because I'm so sick" when I know they are not but I'd respect them a he'll of a lot more if they just said "I really just do not feel like it" or "the prince came in town unexpectedly do you mind if we reschedule?" lol.

    I know it might be a brain thing - so I may humor a person like this and I sure wouldn't be mean I'd just know to never ever trust them. Also - I'd tell them giant lies all the time too just for fun...and wait for them to call me a liar! Haha!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Vinaya - it's true. I know. Live and learn though and you will soon be able to feel and spot some of these people before they get out of hand:). And hey - like I said earlier - I'd rather be gullible and believe people are honest - than run around the world suspicious because of the small percentage of people like this - most people are honest and good. Once your trust has been compromised - you get real good at noticing little things that don't seem right. Always listen to your gut!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Ruchira! Haha! Cracks me up - I do not know where that thought came from - but I knew it would be very girls fantasy to date a REAL prince...to bad this dude was all in my imagination! Haha! I did imagine him being very cute and slightly oily with a nice tan and good pecks:) lol

    Oh and saying people look good when they don't - doesn't count at all! That is becoming as meaningless as "hi! How are you today?". It's just something we say and if you were honest truly - well gosh you'd get a lot of real negative attention - maybe even a few bruises so keep lying about that stuff - those are the harmless lies - ! They allow us to avoid ugly truths! Haha!

    Thanks so much - I had a grand time making all this up!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi MG Singh - I thank you so much - for reading, commenting and the after smile I've got now! Lol

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi gregoriom - true! They have no limits and more importantly - no SHAME! Lol

    Thanks so much for reading and commenting!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi tillsontitan! Ahh that's funny - I ddidnt research Tahiti very well - I should have added like what private airport we flew to:) haha! But I'm glad you saw the point in the end...I was trying to make it slightly believable but still very questionable. I think that's why I've been fooled before - it's the little details. When a real path lies - they can be so detailed it throws us off - makes us have a tiny bit of doubt. I was playing on that!

    Thank you so much!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Audra! That's funny - because I was worried that so quickly after reading the title - a stranger might catch on to me really fast! Lol.

    People like your friend you mention? I consider them really HIGH maintenance and it bores and wears me out. I don't want to have to weigh and analyze everything someone says just so I can figure out if it's real or memorex, you know? LOL. I find myself just not believing any single thing those type have to say...not a good source of info! Thanks so much!

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    Jeannie InABottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    You know, you had me until you mentioned you dated a prince. I started to get a little suspicious then. I would think you might have mentioned that in an earlier hub. And the fact that you hang out with actresses.

    Fascinating hub and voted up! It so difficult dealing with a pathological liar, even if there is something in the brain that causes it. I just can't be around people that lie all the time.

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    Vinaya Ghimire 5 years ago from Nepal

    I just found that I am not a pathological liar, but I'm surrounded by such people.

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    Ruchira 5 years ago from United States

    haha...amongst all the other white lies you stated...found the sentence that you dated a prince...awesome!

    I think I am a pathological liar to some extent 'cause I do tend to say...you look good even if the other person is NOT...lol

    And I have mastered in the above to such an extent that I DON'T fidget, can do eye contact, and don't goof around with my body parts...lol

    excellent hub, Kelly. LOVED it!

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    MG Singh 5 years ago from Singapore

    An excellent hub. voted up by me

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    Deninson Mota 5 years ago from East Elmhurst, NY

    A Pathological Liar don't have limits whatsoever.

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    Mary Craig 5 years ago from New York

    I was iffy at Tahiti but really skeptical at the Pulitzer Prize. However, after reading the entire hub I could see the possibilities! Liars and fantasies covers a lot of ground. You did your research and as a result a really great job. Obviously you pulled us all in and how could anyone just read the first paragraph and skip to the last??? Voted across the board. Thanks for SHARING.

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    iamaudraleigh 5 years ago

    The first section drew me in and caused me to forget what the title said...lol! The rest of your article can help me out. I have a friend (since High School) that I have been pushing away because of her lying. It is hard to deal with. Thank you for your information. It is helpful. Voted up!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Misty - I married one too. Ugh! I used to hate getting that gut feeling like "he is so lying to me right now" and I would look him in the eyes and he could just say whatever came to mind and not blink a bit. He was charming and intelligent - very smooth. Somehow - I always wanted to buy the lie. I didn't want to believe I was being lied to. I think that is why it grates on my nerves so much. Not everything in life is easy - but for goodness sakes - a person who can't even tell their own truth? Pathetic and wimpy!

    Thanks so much!!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Vocalcoach! Thank you so much! This was crazy to write really. I couldn't seem to get it "right" at first. I couldn't figure out the best way to describe a pathological liar - and then it hit me! Start out with big old fat lies - just like a PL would:) I kept exaggerating more and laughing louder - it was hard to put a stop to it! haha!

    Thanks a bunch - I so appreciate your lovely comments! I will go to bed with a big smile - and I hope you do too:)

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi weezyschannel! I can tell by the slant of your font that you are no liar! lol Thanks so much!

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    Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

    This is brilliant Kelly, and so much in it I could identify with from personal experiences. My ex-a true pathological liar, (if his lips were moving he was lying.) My former Stepson, (he would literally lie about stuff that was really unimportant, e.g. what he had for breakfast), and an elderly friend of ours who gets facial twitches when he is lying, which is constantly. All three of them tripped themselves up frequently, and as I hate lying without it being a 'white lie' I found (and find) these people infuriating.

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    Audrey Hunt 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

    Dear Kelly ~ At one time in my life I believed everything anyone would tell me. It happened again when I read about your background. "Wow - I didn't know Kelly had a PHD in Psychology" (my mind speaking out loud.) "And hanging out with famous actresses?" (now wondering what in the heck you're doing here on HP.)

    By the time I came to the part about the Pulitzer Prize suspicion found it's way in and mzvocal was able to put 2+2 together. Ah-Hah! (smiling from ear to ear at the relief of it all.) 'cuz I'm so glad you are who you are!

    This is the best introduction to an article ever. And, dear Kelly, this is your best work which is saying something because your hubs are classic!

    So, Up, Useful, Funny, Awesome, Beautiful and Interesting + marvelous, fantastic, award-winning and speaking of awards, if your hub doesn't get one, yours truly is filing a complaint with "you-know-who."

    The Mayo clinic???? Yes-sir...you go girl! :-)

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    Lisa 5 years ago from Central USA

    Great hub!!! I will not answer on grounds it may incriminate me though :)

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Thomas! I was LMAO writing this one! haha! Now I can see why all you funny guys get such a kick out of fiction! It is SO hard - and you always make it look so easy. Just the first capsule took me forever and it isn't even that impressive...why..I coulda been anyone or anything! haha!

    Thanks so much - and yeah, I hope no dirty liars steal this hub too...see - I did a bunch of research to lie like that!

    I decided to be a psychiatrist first, then I had to find a school ...Mayo sounded pretty fun!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Drbj - This was hilarious work for me! I have a few friends and family that read my stuff through FB - so I was trying hard to throw them all a curve ball! Several of my FB friends have known me since elementary school? lol I did find it really hard to make up lies that could sound to a stranger like "maybe this could happen??" hahaha!

    I have been at job interviews before and knew that one of the things they would be looking for is eye contact - and it makes me nervous if I think about it! I bet everyone feels like that from time to time...eye contact is a weird thing. One look can say so much. Also - I think staring directly at someone in another culture could be seen as defiance or challenging. I also catch myself casting my eyes downward when I am deferring to someone (you know like a doctor, lawyer, autority figure I guess). I noticed this when the doctor was chewing me out the other day:) lol I didn't do my exercises right! haha!

    I am fascinated with topics like this - thank you so much for the support!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Ha! Hey Tammy! Oh that was SO much fun to write - so being crazy is real fun at least! lol I had to think so hard to figure out some good lies to tell about myself - that alone was entertaining!

    Thanks so much - this was pretty fun! lol 4/1 :0

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    ThoughtSandwiches 5 years ago from Reno, Nevada

    Kelly...

    You dirty little liar...this was awesome!! No really...I'm not lying. I had my suspicions early on in this article because whenever I pathologically lie...I place myself in Rochester, as well.

    This was so good I could even envision another website stealing it...no...no lie...

    Thomas

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    drbj and sherry 5 years ago from south Florida

    What a great April Fool idea, Kelly. I hereby dub you Queen of the Pranksters. I have known people who could look you straight in the eye without wavering and lie with impunity. Many criminals have learned this behavior since most folks believe someone is lying when they cannot or will not look you in the eye.

    Au contraire. In America we are taught to look people in the eye, looking away from time to time. so we don't make them feel uncomfortable. But there are many other cultures in other countries where youngsters are taught not to look their elders in the eye as a sign of respect. But I do respect your talent, m'dear, so a great big Up to you.

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    Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

    Very clever.. You got me. I learned a lot here. The part about brain composition is very interesting. This is an excellent hub!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Alastar :0 LOL Yeah I have been keeping lots of secrets from my hub friends! haha! I have been watching that show lie to me for a few seasons and I am really interested in this stuff so it is so fun to mess around writing about the funny side of it, you know?

    Eye contact is a weird thing for some people, some people have anxiety upon meeting groups, people of authority, doctors, social anxiety stuff I think is part or if someone is uncomfortable to whom they are speaking I think it's hard to hold eye contact. We hammer that point home here in America - many people are aware you are checking them out for that.

    If you know someone well and they are usually comfortable with you and they begin to dart around with the eyeballs I would then wonder for sure! I think eye contact in general make people nervous if they are thinking about it when they talk to people too! Like - I have been in job interviews before and I had to think "eye contact don't forget to have good eye contact" but it doesn't even look natural if you don't feel comfortable talking to the person! lol

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Neelshkulkarni! My prince! Shhhh do not put yourself in danger my love! Do you want the whole world to find out? I promised - swore - I would keep our love a secret and I did!

    How could I forget the Elephant rides, seriously, I have the photos of us with that cute little monkey right in my mansion!

    Ok my dear...the cat is out of the bag now and there is nothing I can do to save you from my rivals and your mother. I will pray for you. Please - run! Hide! While there is still time!

    LOL LOL I do love you Neeleshkulkarni:)

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Haha! Amy! That is so funny girl. I was having fun going on and on. I was trying to make it sound probable at first and then I was trying to get a little wilder and wilder....I think that is how paths work. I think if we keep picking up the b.s. they are putting down they keep on adding and embelishing. Like your bosses - these people are about themselves. They don't feel feelings so they don't mind crushing yours for sure.

    I love that show! It is really interesting. They have a pretty cool website too. The guy that writes it - really is a famous guy so they make it very close to real. It is a great show!

    Yeah, my MD/PHD - should have been md?phd? ahhhh no! lol

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Scottsalot - thank you so much! I really appreciate your comment:)

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Ardie! I KNOW! That is what kills me - there is NO reason for it. It is also, another reason why I think we continue to believe in people like this...in that back of our minds we hear that little voice saying, "well it could be true and what reason would they have to lie?" then we can't figure out the reason so we are more accepting of the lie. I guess running around questioning whether everyone else is pathological didn't occur? LOL LOL

    I have felt really bad before finding out I was punked but oh well, I would rather go on in my life believing most people really are good:) (Like you!)

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    Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

    Okay. Saw the title of course, but for the first few sentences danged if I wasn't going- wow, Kelly never told us this stuff before lol!! Anyway, this was a very interesting read and yes, that's the truth. You've got the signs of a liar down pat. Some of them are funny to be honest about it. What do you make of peeps who are telling the truth but still won't hardly look someone in the eye when talking?

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Melovy! LOL I had a blast with this one! See, while I was writing it, I knew several of you would be really raising your eyebrows! Like - wait, she never ever mentioned this stuff before? haha! And - I am still waiting for someone to yank my chain for saying I interviewed John Lovett! He is a comdeian:) haha!

    Yes - it is really serious for some people because like Marcy said...some people can keep these huge lies going for years. For instance - I read a couple of cases where women married men they thought were high ranking naval officers (and one guy had even bought medals and uniforms and wore them to huge public events!)these men stayed married to these ladies until the money ran out or until they were busted! Turns out, the one guy, was never ever even in the service at all, just a con artist. Some people are so good at this - they convince themselves I think. Now that is slick! lol

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Of course I do! So hmmm, which one of us is the pathological one?

    Now - will the real pathological liar please stand up!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi xstatic! Now I know why they call you that! I read your comment and I AM XSTATIC:) thank you so much:)

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    neeleshkulkarni 5 years ago from new delhi

    looking right into your eyes, in a low pitched voice,without patting my face nose etc,with my hands spread out palms facing outwards,looking up and to the left,unsmilingly i implore you to remember the times when we dated when you came to my kingdom as an american exchange student.

    ahah what a time it was- those elephant rides through the jungle,the taking you to the hidden section of the royal treasury and asking you to choose at least a hundred trinkets from amongst the millions on display, the hours spent gazing at the moon from the balcony of the thousand room summer palace occupied only by us,and yes taking you to the royal artisans who made for you the indestructible tungsten fiber tee shirt which said "i love my husband".

    (which i am glad you still wear)

    i understand there are compulsions forced on you by the fact that you are now married but what can i do, despite my 127 wives and my harem full of only Miss Worlds' and Universes',i cannot forget you or that time.

    please please please do not deny it.

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    Amy Becherer 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    I use to believe everything everyone told me. I got over it after I was laid off 2 weeks following finalization of my divorce. The small, family-owned company knew most of what was going on in every employee's life. They ingratiated themselves with their "Aw, shucks, we're family" bullshit. The president of the company wanted to see the little house I considered buying before the inspector said it needed a new foundation!! Thank God for small favors.

    I worked at my job for 13 years, spending 2-hours, round trip drive time. The bosses kept me in the dark regarding their decision. Me, who they called "family". Go on, lie to me, cause I can spot a liar a mile away now.

    I loved the series "Lie to Me". I actually learned a lot from that program.

    And, I was laughing as I read the fantasy you weaved at the start of this fantastically, interesting, clever piece, RealHousewife. Brilliant, but what would one expect from a PhD?

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    scottsalot 5 years ago from Oakland California

    Nice! Very interesting.

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    Sondra 5 years ago from Neverland

    RHW - I am like that too! Because I am mostly honest I just assume everyone else is too. Then when I find out someone lied to me I get very hurt that the person took advantage of my easy-going and trusting nature. The really sad thing is the pathological liar lies just for the heck of it! And then it leaves you wondering "wow, what was the point in lying about THAT?!"

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    Yvonne Spence 5 years ago from UK

    Your first sentence had me thinking I didn’t know you as well as I thought - but by the end of the description of Rochester I knew I did know you better than that!

    What fun, and yet it’s also serious for some folks isn’t it? A very interesting hub, and it got me wondering about a couple of people I know. But maybe some people lie in some situations only, which probably means they are not pathological liars. Hmm…

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    Susan Holland 5 years ago from Southwest Missouri

    WHAT? You don't believe me?? LOL

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    Jim Higgins 5 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

    Like others, you had me with the first paragraph. I thought, "Well! This woman is even more accomplished than I thought, or than her profile indicated." Then, you asked that question, and I got it, and went on to read another great Hub by you. Really outstanding! UP!

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    diogenes 5 years ago from UK and Mexico

    Boy RH, this got our attention! Now we'll never be able to trust you again...and here was I hoping you hadn't offered yourself to bloody Prince Charles Grrrrr!

    I rarely lie; I would say never, but I'm sure I've told a few porkies on dating sites!

    But in general I am uncomfortable around liars, i mean: who are they really!

    Great hub which I will reread (if I remember!)

    Bob

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Joelipoo - I have to say - it did become fun after a while:) lol I had a really hard time in the beginning because I was like "ok now what can I say I did that sounds exciting...I kept coming up with a blank slate! lol It got much easier as I went along though:) haha And more fantastic too. I worked with someone like this too! So I thought about how he would really drag stuff out and tried to emulate his style! Totally right too - it used to be insulting to think we believed all that!

    This guy would say stuff like "I went skeet shooting and shot every skeet in the air with my eyes closed!" hahaha!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi dilipchandra12 - thank you so much! I really appreciate that compliment!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Ardie! Oh these are the smoothest liars of all too. I mean they just enjoy it and have no bad taste left over after they spit the filth out! And you know - I always want to give people the benefit of the doubt - I don't want to walk around thinking everyone is lying to me! So I figure - I have bought some pretty crazy stuff before:) lol

    Thank you so much!

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    Kelly Umphenour 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Susan - you crack me up!! LOL Of course I knew about yours and Brad's babies! I live 4 hours away and I have been to the Springfield bus station a few times:) hahaha!

    But hey - you do have gorgeous children and I am sure if people saw their photos you could yank their chains for a while! It is a great example of a pathological liar's lie - it's extreme but it makes you stop and go well? Truth is stranger than fiction!

    Thanks so much!

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    Joelipoo 5 years ago from Ohio

    I enjoyed your lies and how they got progressively more extreme. I used to work with a pathological liar, and I was always insulted by the fact that he actually expected we were dumb enough to believe the lies he told us.