Lies, more often, are shame and manipulation.
We feel ashamed that we aren’t “following the rules” someone else has put forth – a person, our parent, our boss, our government, our God. We attempt to manipulate a situation so that we don’t look like the bad guy or feel bad OURSELVES. We often tell ourselves its so we “don’t hurt those we love”, but really, the lies hurt more than the truths do in the end. It’s the LIES that get us in trouble.
Sometimes we blame the “rules” for our lie. Sometimes it’s the rules that are put forth that make us feel that we need to lie. We believe a rule imposed is somehow unfair or shouldn’t apply to us. Therefore, “we shouldn’t have to feel the ‘shame‘ about the lack of rule following, because the ‘rule’ should never have been imposed to begin with”…our manipulation.
The lies we tell each other. The lie my son tells every time he skulks up the stairs, with the food in hand, sneakily by his side, to eat in his bedroom. The lies we tell ourselves. The lie my daughter tells herself when she looks in the mirror and doesn’t see the magazine model. The lies we continue over and over again. The lies my ex told over and over to hide the relationship he was having with the paramour for six months of our marriage. The lies we use to protect ourselves from pain. The lies I told myself about the kind of relationship I thought we had…
the truth of things always hurts us less in the long run and leaves less damaging marks on our psyche than the lies…
My son ultimately feels like he is always disappointing me when he gets caught with food wrappers and such upstairs. Should I change my rule of not eating upstairs in his room? So he doesn’t feel the pain of the self-deprecation he goes through as a result of getting himself into trouble for not following my rules? Am I the one who should change, or should the one who is lying change his behavior? Shame.
My daughter sees an ugly, overweight pre-teen that will never have the skinny, sexy body portrayed in the media. The lie is ultimately hers in that she tells herself that she will never measure up…but the lie originates in the rule she is using as her standard…the media lies to young women daily about what they represent to the world and how they must be in order to be valued. Manipulation.
My ex was obviously unhappy in the marriage, as it wasn’t meeting the needs he felt he deserved. The rule of committing adultery was not one he felt he needed to follow because he could shift blame that allowed his lies to be validated in his own eyes. I wasn’t following the rules of marriage, so why should he? Manipulation.
I wanted the happy family. I wanted the “happily ever after” of two people coming together to create a family unit and reveling in that responsibility and the traditions and bonds that would come of those relationships. I closed my eyes to the ways that it didn’t work. I lied to myself and told myself that it was possible…”if just”. I attempted to put forth the happy face, while underneath things fell apart with lies. Shame and manipulation.
Why can’t honesty be put forth and dealt with openly? Lying doesn’t save anyone’s feelings. Not really. It only delays the pain…and often intensifies it because of the initial non-disclosure that creates the atmosphere of distrust.
No. We would rather hide our shame and/or try to manipulate situations so that we create a better outcome than what we expect would be the case if we were honest. No wonder we lie. It just never really works out how we envision, does it…
My ex used to tell me over and over that he ‘never’ lied. My shame? That I actually believed him. Although I didn’t realize it, over the course of our marriage he distanced me from my family and friends. When things fell apart and I was honest with them about what was really going on, I was able to step back and see myself through their eyes. What I saw horrified me.
I can never regret our relationship, because it brought me my beautiful children. But oh how I wish I had opened my eyes (and my mouth) sooner. With my family’s help, I was able to see his lies and manipulation for what they were. It has been very difficult to live with the shame, however. Especially since my ex was literally stopping people on the street in our small town to tell them his lies.
I think lies have a way of making themselves known in time…which is why honesty is such a better course to plot. Don’t worry about the lies he spreads, you shine like the light you can be and others will see through his transparencies sooner or later. My ex never “lied” either, he just never told the truth. Not really sure there’s a difference! 🙂
Ah, yes, the same old arguments. A lie of omission is still a lie – the result is the same. My ex has told so many lies he can no longer keep them all straight. Honesty is always much less work!
Very early on after my husband left me (for another woman, 26 years younger) he told me that it was me who had betrayed him and he had therefore been forced into the only choice left open to him. It took me a long time to work that one out but eventually I did. I had changed. In his mind that meant I had betrayed him. How had I changed? From that young tender 17 year old who would sit gazing into his eyes hero-worshiping his every move and wanting to spend every second of the day with him; I turned into a confident 57 year-old business manager, mother-of-four, grand-mother, and community member; and I was not able to spend every second of the day with him. I ‘betrayed’ him because I matured and grew in wisdom and accomplishments.
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