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Why do people feel compelled to lie if the truth would be easier to face than th

  1. ChristinS profile image95
    ChristinSposted 4 years ago

    Why do people feel compelled to lie if the truth would be easier to face than the lie?

    I know someone who is a compulsive liar.  This person feels compelled to lie to not "look bad" to others when he makes a mistake, however the lies he tells are whoppers and create much more problems for him than just telling the truth would in the first place. 

    His fear of making people upset is so irrational, that he'll invent all sorts of dramas, as far as pretending to be the victim of a crime, so that people don't know he just lied about not showing up somewhere. 

    What compels people to lie when the truth would serve them better?

  2. bethperry profile image90
    bethperryposted 4 years ago

    Hm. I am not sure why anyone would do this, but it sounds like he may have a mental issue.

    1. ChristinS profile image95
      ChristinSposted 4 years agoin reply to this

      def some mental issues going on and I too, cannot wrap my brain around why when you have already dug a small hole, you would use a backhoe to make it deeper instead of just coming clean - and repeatedly! Makes no sense to me.

  3. profile image0
    mollymcphillipsposted 4 years ago

    At a certain degree it's definitely psychological, but I also think for some people it becomes addictive. They can't stop when they start. There is some type of thrill to be had from completely making something up, and getting away with it when most of us would not see the point or even feel guilty for lying. I know from experience,  too, that it is indicative of sociopathy if it's a frequent enough behavior.

    1. ChristinS profile image95
      ChristinSposted 4 years agoin reply to this

      I can see that, it is a compulsion for sure, but just one I can't wrap my brain around. It seems to me if you don't want to alienate people, you would instinctively not lie to them repeatedly.  strange indeed and I can see sociopathy as key yep.

  4. fpherj48 profile image77
    fpherj48posted 4 years ago

    Christin.....My favorite type of question....right out of "Behavioral Science," and right up my alley........The kind of person you describe as a "compulsive liar," (which is an accurate term to use), does, in fact, boil down to a Pathology (disease) aka "Pathological Liar".....recent high profile examples:  Casey Anthony and Jody Arias......both severely full-blown, Pathological Liars with Borderline Personality Disorder.  These two disorders, more often than not, accompany one another, as well as probable stark narcissism.

    Perhaps, unbeknownst to you, the summary of your question, has many answers to your own question....For instance, you use the word, "irrational," and the phrase, "invent all sorts of drama".....Classic examples.  The other behavioral word that stands out blatantly with these individuals is "Exaggeration."  Fantastic-like explanations, using every form of superlative....and unnecessary added BLING.
    WHY? you ask, do people feel COMPELLED to lie?.....when.....
    Again, the answer is within your question.  Lying IS precisely, a Compulsion, where these sad creatures are concerned.  Knee-jerk reaction, of which they have little or no conscious control. (key word being, "conscious.")  The Pathological Liar is on constant auto-pilot.
    As I write this, I am well aware I should simply accept that there is a HUB here, I must write.  Good for you, Christin!  You have inspired creation.
    I dare not leave you hanging, though.  Suffice it to say that the genesis of this mental issue, can most often and in large part, be traced back to fairly early childhood.  1.  The overly protected and "adored" child  2.  The child who in his/her own mind, whether justifiable or not, firmly believe he/she is the LEAST favorite..(black sheep/outsider) within his/her group of siblings.  3.  The infamous double-edged sword.... a child placed on an unrealistic pedestal, yet continually criticized and scorned.   The latter occurs most often when one or both parents insist upon living vicariously, through their children.  These parents attempt to "create" the person they had wanted to be, but never achieved.....OR...did achieve and wish to create a sort of "Mini-Me"...
    You get the gist, I'm sure.   Imagine a decade or more of living in constant & dreaded FEAR of the TRUTH.  They learn to lie....quickly and well, in order to maintain favor........Superb Question!  I hope you receive numerous responses.

    1. ChristinS profile image95
      ChristinSposted 4 years agoin reply to this

      so many excellent answers. Thanks for the detailed response will def read your hub when you do it!

    2. fpherj48 profile image77
      fpherj48posted 4 years agoin reply to this

      I am flattered & honored.  Thank you so much!  Yes, you did receive some terrific replies!   I'll probably get on that Hub within the week!   Peace.

  5. CraftytotheCore profile image82
    CraftytotheCoreposted 4 years ago

    I have to deal with someone like this on a regular basis.  I find it to be sneaky and vile.  I believe the person I know has a personality disorder.

    Everything in her life is lies to cause drama and attention to herself.

    Everything has to be her way.  Even when she is told something, she insists on it being her own way.  For example, she can distinguish between wrong and right, but she always chooses to do wrong.  Then she blames everyone else for her choices and lies about the truth.

    One time I went to visit an elderly relative and this person was there also.  I offered to make dinner and bring it over.  We planned a date.  The next day, this person calls me out of the blue and tells me she felt compelled to shop for the food.  She offered to buy the food.  She said specifically she was going to the grocery store in one hour and wanted to make sure she picked up everything.  She told me not to buy a thing.   A week goes by.  I called.  No answer.  I left a message saying I assumed she had not gone grocery shopping and I would buy the stuff for the dinner.  No answer.  Then, a third person who was going to eat dinner with us told me that the elderly relative gave her the money to buy the food for dinner.  So a) the idea wasn't even hers.  b) she took money from the elderly relative, which I would have never done.  c) she lied to me saying SHE wanted to buy the food which wasn't true.  d) she never bought the food.

    I confronted her.  I said please give the money back, I'll go grocery shopping myself and buy the food.  She called all kinds of people telling them what a hateful person I am.  Then she proceeded to write me a text saying I'm a hateful sorry excuse for a human being.  She became extremely vulgar because I caught her in the act. She was caught.  She had no excuse.  So she twisted it around and tried to claim no one ever asked me to make dinner.  Thankfully there were witnesses that heard her request me to make certain dishes. 

    So in this situation, I feel that this person suffers from histrionic personality disorder.  I also think she is a narcissist. 

    Nothing is ever her fault. It's easier for her to lie and save face.  Arrogance.

    1. fpherj48 profile image77
      fpherj48posted 4 years agoin reply to this

      Oh my, Crafty.....dear, dear me....I believe there's a name for individuals like the one in your story....but it's not a medical term....  "NUTCASE !"   Bless you for having the character to confront her!

    2. profile image0
      mollymcphillipsposted 4 years agoin reply to this

      I'm pretty sure Nutcase has been added to the medical dictionary...or it should be anyway smile

    3. fpherj48 profile image77
      fpherj48posted 4 years agoin reply to this


    4. ChristinS profile image95
      ChristinSposted 4 years agoin reply to this

      In so many ways we could be talking about the same person. I just don't understand. We all lie sometimes to save face, but to lie and then turn on people and just go over the top - I don't get it.  Sorry you had that experience!