We have all been there, right? We have been lied to or we have lied. In relationships, the main reason that people lie is to remove themselves from situations that they were wrong about, correct?
What is the reasoning behind lying or deceiving people into believing something else? Is it for your own benefit? The benefit of the other person? We are all pretty selfish when it comes to needs and necessity, right?
Since this has recently happened to me, I have decided to research some aspects of the ethics of lying. This is what I have discovered. It is the virtue of ethics that makes lying wrong. Someone decided that lying is wrong although, sometimes lying may be lifesaving (as people lie to captors to be released, etc.).
There are many research methods used on children with the compulsion to lie. The American Academy of Children and Adolescent Psychiatry indicates that children that lie are usually telling stories, lying may be an underlining emotional issue or that they are trying to hide something (i.e. drug, alcohol abuse).
What about grown-ups? There is actually a website called howtotelllying.com that offers 13 reasons why people lie. Here it comes. The 13 main reasons why people lie:
1. To avoid punishment/consequences.
2. To avoid a confrontation and general unpleasantness of the situation.
Sometimes we’re not afraid of consequences, we just want to avoid unpleasant conversation or bad feelings that might result out of telling the truth. For example, if we don’t want to go for happy hour drinks with our co-worker, we might reply to his invitation “I would love to. Unfortunately, I’ve already made plans for tonight.” Whilst the truth is we don’t want to go because he bores us to death.
3. To be liked.
4. To be sociable.
When we don’t care about being liked by someone, but still want to be pleasant, we might say a complement or two that we don’t really mean.
5. To get their way.
6. To protect privacy.
7. To pump their image up (personal or professional).
8. To avoid an extra effort.
9. As a passive-aggressive “punishment” or protest.
This might need an explanation. Suppose, we’re mad at somebody. This person comes to us with an extra ticket to the concert we would love to go to. But because we’re mad at him, we might want to punish him with a rejection. So, we say, “You know what? I don’t feel like going…”
Manipulators developed this one into almost an art form. A manipulator might actually agree to go to the concert, so the person wouldn’t have a chance to find someone else to accompany him to the event. But then, at the last minute, a manipulator would come up with some excuse not to go or simply stand the other person up.
10. To damage other people’s reputation, to harm someone.
You’re better off staying away from people who do it, even if they haven’t done it to you yet. One day they will.
11. It’s a part of their job.
A customer service representative might be required to say “I understand you concerns” to an angry customer, even if he thinks the customer is being totally unreasonable and irrational.
12. To cover up insecurity.
13. As a joke or a prank.
Sometimes it’s not just one reason, but a number of them.
For example, a sales person might be telling you that an awful shirt looks good on you because it’s a part of her job to give complements to customers and because she would get a commission (a gain) if you buy the shirt.
The above 13 reasons are for adult lying. Here’s the 10 top reasons why small children might lie:
1.For entertainment purpose or as an act of creativity
2. Because they think it’s funny
3. To test you
4. To avoid punishment/consequences
5. To get their way
6. To avoid an extra effort
7. To be liked
8. Out of fear
9. Small children might not realize they’re lying
10. It’s rare, but it does happen that small children lie to get someone else in trouble
You can check out the full website here http://www.howtotelllying.com/how-to-tell-lying/12-main-reasons-why-people-lie.
Do you know someone that is a compulsive liar? How do you deal with the complications of a relationship when nothing appears truthful?
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