Do you consider yourself an honest person? What’s the biggest lie you’ve ever told? Whether it’s a tiny white lie or an elaborate tale, there’s few of us who can say that we’ve never stretched the truth in some way. When we asked people to share the biggest lies they’ve ever told, the responses were sparse, but the lies that people admitted to were pretty surprising!
One response that we got was from someone who was obviously unhappy in their relationship. They said, “I lie to my spouse about wanting to continue to be married. I just don’t want to hurt them. I don’t like to hurt people or make them feel bad, even at the expense of my happiness.”
Talk about a life altering untruth!
Another person said that they lied by “telling cheating partners that they believed they weren’t cheating” even though they were certain that they were.
And still another respondent had admitted to lying about fidelity as well. This time, they were the guilty party. They lied by saying, “I had an affair with a transvestite for several months but could never tell anyone.” They admitted that it was difficult to maintain the lie but they did so because in their words they knew “[the truth] would only hurt my significant other if I told her” and “I know if I pursued the relationship I was having an affair with I would have had a very difficult time explaining it to my family and friends.”
So, do these lies by omission count? Is not telling someone the truth the same thing as telling them a lie? While relationship lies seemed to dominate the responses, there were other types of lies as well. A big lie kept from a friend was another.
“I lied to who was, at that time, my best friend. I never cared much for her boyfriend, but they’d been together about 4 years, through the end of high school and most of college. She wasn’t going to break up with him no matter what anyone said or did. People had told her many times she was way too good for him. He had been very flirty with me in the past but I chalked it up to, well, him just being an ass really. So, when we were out all together one night, and he hit on me, I had mixed feelings. But then he did it again later that night. Not like casual flirting. I’m talking the hard-core sell. Like while she was in the bathroom he told me he wanted to take her home and come back out and meet me to have sex. I didn’t tell her. She was so blinded by him. He would’ve denied it and she would have taken his side and our friendship would have ended. I never ever told her. About 3 years later, he actually committed suicide. Our friendship was ruined by then anyway, just through time, distance, his influence on her, and him not wanting her around me (probably fear that I’d tell). I thought of telling her after he was gone, but never did. I didn’t want to speak ill of the dead I guess.
Perhaps sometimes a lie to protect someone is an easier cross to bear. There are all kinds of lies. Some are easier to justify than others. Sometimes people lie because they feel like they are protecting people in their lives, and then, there are lies for pure self-preservation.
“When I was around 12, I went around my neighborhood with a friend of mine and we punctured all the tires on pretty much everybody’s car in the neighborhood. I think we probably did about close to 75 cars. The next day cops were everywhere asking people if they knew anything. I was asked if I knew anything about it and I said no. To this day only a handful of people know about this.
So is it ever okay to lie to someone? What if it’s to protect someone you care about? In the end are you really protecting them by shielding them from the truth? Tell us what you think. We won’t judge. Honest.