‘Are You Lying to Someone?’

“Lying to someone you love to keep them happy is like a doctor giving out cigarettes to his lung cancer patients to keep them coming.” I saw that on someone’s status update.

Some people will tell you little white lies are ok. You know the kind, ‘I’m washing my hair tonight, sorry I can’t make it’ or ‘I have a headache, I can’t make it to your show’. You’ve heard me say before that my standard answer is, ‘I don’t want to.’ I say that because it’s true. :)

Then there are the medium lies we tell that involve fantasy-based characters being the mascots for the Holidays.

The lies which sting are when you say you can’t come to a party and then the host of that party sees you down at the Liquor Store dressed to the nines because you are going somewhere else. Ouch.

How about the lies we tell to cover up bits of our past that are either embarrassing or could be harmful to the current relationship? Maybe it isn’t a full-on lie, maybe it’s a cover-up.

Maybe we aren’t lying but instead just not defending the truth.

A lie isn’t what tends to hurt us, it’s the consequence of the lie. However we will tell our partners we can handle anything so long as it’s the truth. We will say we don’t appreciate being lied to.

If someone cheats on us, we’ll rant and rave about how it was the lie that got us. “Yeah, he cheated and then lied about it.” Well the truth is the cheating is what hurts us. The consequence is that they can’t be trusted. If the lie bugged us so much, we’d be mad about Santa and the Easter Bunny too…but we still get presents, so who cares, right?

The part that we are ashamed us usually isn’t the lie, it’s the act. Then, people are generally only sorry when they get caught in the act or caught lying.

It’s almost impossible to heal anything with an ongoing lie, but if you are ready to fess up to something, you better be ready to face the consequence that goes with it. Like giving yourself up to the police, you may get a lesser sentence, but you are still going to do the time.

What I am finding with many people is nobody seems to think telling the truth is very convenient. This is especially true when there is cheating or even just a ‘loss of love’ like admitting you simply don’t love someone. If you rely on your spouse for money or financial support, it’s imperative to keep the lie going so you don’t end up homeless.

In looking back at the original, “Lying to someone you love to keep them happy is like a doctor giving out cigarettes to his lung cancer patients to keep them coming.” I think the problem is that when we are stuck in a lie like that, we may think we are keeping them happy, but we never seem to consider our own happiness. I don’t mean the kind of happiness that keeps you going to a hotel room every other night or affords you the time to hang at a bar with the boys, but the happiness knowing your character is in check.

What if we took them out of the equation altogether, can we look at ourselves in the mirror and feel ok about whatever we are lying about? Can this also enter as a factor in ditching the lie? What does it say about us when we have to lie?

Another thing to consider is what does it say about our situation is we have to lie? Are we in something really unhealthy for our spirit? Are we trapped by not just the lie, but by people or surroundings? Is the lie maybe just an indication of a much bigger problem? How do we free ourselves of the lie and the all the circumstances which helped to cultivate the lie?

Everyone feels justified for lying otherwise, nobody would do it. But if you really feel like you have a good solid reason for lying and for argument sake, we’ll say you are justified, what are you covering up, protecting or just really knee-deep in that is so important that your spirit is being compromised?

I’ve had many years of adjusting in my life and the best thing I have ever done was switched into spirit-protection mode. It’s where I have assessed what is good for my spirit and what isn’t. It’s where I hire armed guards to watch out for me while I sleep. This protection is meant to always keep my character in alignment. I figure if I make every decision based on what is best for my spirit, my problems and issues won’t bleed into the lives of others. It’s what stops a person from cheating on someone just because they cheated on you. It stops us from seeking revenge or doing harm to others. I find it quite self-regulating.

So yes, lying to someone to keep them happy is pretty ridiculous no matter the reason. I’ve even said children are more resilient than we give them credit for. I know a boy right now who has seen more from his parents than maybe what he should, but he has a very clear idea of what is going on and he can talk quite openly about their situation. Is it dysfunctional? Maybe. But he’s not being lied to and therefore he gets to assess it based on the truth and because the truth of his parents really awful relationship is out in the open, other people can talk openly to the boy and he knows it’s not his fault. This is a good thing.

I’m more concerned that people are lying to themselves and therefore are chipping away at their own character which is of greater concern. The fear is that once we have hurt our spirit, we can’t get it back. But we too are resilient and we get to have new beginnings. We are equipped and we can start fresh with a new protective liner on our spirit. We just have to make it our priority and get rid of the lies to start. Just like demolishing a house to build a new one, it’s pretty ugly for a while.

Maybe next time someone asks me to do something, I’ll change my ‘I don’t want to’ to ‘No thank you.’ It sounds a bit nicer, doesn’t it? ;)

Karen :)

“I do myself a greater injury in lying than I do him of whom I tell a lie.” ~Michael de Montaigne

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