Last week, a friend and I got into a conversation about love and lies. One of the questions he asked was: “Could you really say you love someone and still lie to them?” It was a pretty dicey question… hard for me to give a straight answer.
My challenge was two-tiered; first, I’m strongly averse to lying, as it is too much work covering up one’s tracks. I would rather give answers I think are appropriate for the situation, without divulging too much. Other times I’ll just say things as they are, and damn the consequences.
In cases where I have found myself lying about certain things to certain people who I think I “love”, I’ve had to kill our relationship.The termination never being because there was no love, or that I didn’t really care, but because I reckon that being in a position where you feel you have to lie about certain things to be with someone is a huge indication that it is toxic for the two of you.
Too many lies in a relationship make it difficult to maintain a connection.
Secondly, through trial and error, I have learned that while lying does more harm than good, lying to someone you love is inevitable. Actually, it can better shape or even save a relationship.
Now, I am not trying to champion the fact that it is okay to lie to the ones we love, or that everyone should have a bulletproof immunity to lies when we are in a love-based relationship; but the truth is, everyone lies.
We like to pretend we are honest people and we are beneath telling petty lies…but we lie every day. It could range from tiny lies such as refusing to admit to others that the stinky fart which nearly claimed the lives of every on in the room, came out of your anus; or perhaps reducing your age by 5 years; to life-changing ones such as neglecting to mention to your husband that the child you are expecting is not his. But regardless of its size, a lie is still a lie.
We convince ourselves that the reason we lie is not because we are malicious, selfish beasts with no regard for others. We assert that we lie because we are terrified of what might happen, if we tell the truth. We are afraid that we may be ridiculed, humiliated or left by the people they love the most; it could be that it is a struggle with the addiction for lying…and that is totally understandable.
Some will argue that a lie involves two things: intent and lack of notification of the other party. As such, it is a deliberate choice on our part to fabricate the truth, without letting others know we are doing so.
Perhaps, lying would not be such a big deal if we, as humans, did not have the knack for saving the most epic and fantastic lies for the ones we claim to ‘love’.
The thing is, the ones we love often ask questions and seek answers that they think they are prepared for, but really they are not. To save them from the hurt which an honest response may cause, or even save the relationship from undue stress, the lie comes in. It usually does not mean you do not love them.
Of course, he is not the best lover you’ve ever had. You don’t think he is as intelligent or as handsome as you always suggest. Also, he’s not the only person you’ve met who really gets you…but you just say that to make him feel special and give him the sense that you truly love and care for him…which, actually, you do. Except that your love is not the kind where you literally feel madly in love every second as he believes it is. There is no mischief in doing this, is there?
Why then is ut that when they realize, at any point, that you may have lied, they feel utterly betrayed.
Sure, there are lies..and there are lies. But essentially, I believe that the people who feel betrayed by the lies of their lovers are those who have the most unrealistic expectations about love and faithfulness.
We all lie to our loved ones at some point or another, and we need to keep that in mind… so that we are well aware of our own lies – therefore less shocked by the lies of your mate.
Is it really far-fetched to ask that the reason for the lie be considered before judgment is given and fatal decisions made? What happened to empathy? Why is it so hard for people to empathize with the person who has told the lie, and figure out what the motivation was before throwing down the hammer?
We admire the picture-perfect, time-tested relationships and marriages that have endured periods of ups and downs; we imagine them to be people who are faithful to each other, honest and tell it to each other straight up. But have you ever wondered that maybe the opposite is the case?
Maybe the people who achieve this kind of relationship are actually the best manipulators of reality in the world. Do you really believe that the times they lied to each other, they did it because they truly did not love the other?