Lies (White, Gray, Black, Purple)

Okay, you all decide.  After visiting Charlie over at his blog and reading his post entitled Liar Liar Pants On Fire, I have a proposition for you (no, not that).  I will have a poll attached to this post.   Please take the extra 15 seconds to vote.  Thank-you.  Charlie’s post talked about lies.  .  .the white lies people tell when planning a surprise party, more lies when turning someone down who’s asked you out, etc.  The basic gist (if I am interpreting it correctly) is that everyone lies and this lying is sort of inevitable.  Of course, at the end of his post, he encourages us to think twice about the lying we sometimes engage in and to address the lies some of us tell ourselves because they can be damaging. 

I started thinking (yeah, watch out) that myself (along with my BFF’s) have little or no patience for lying (unless of course someone is throwing us a surprise party ;-)  ).  When it comes to relationships (romantic, platonic, whatever), I just don’t have the patience for lies whether little or big.  I’d rather skip the B.S. and get down to the nitty gritty.  If you like my eyes, say it and mean it.  If you don’t, there’s no need to lie and say you do.  Compliment me on something you are sincere about.  If there’s no chemistry, I’m going to tell you.  I won’t be cruel about it but I’m not going to lie.  If I get asked out by a sixty-plus year old man (yes, it’s happened), I’m not going to reply, “I already have a boyfriend” or “I’m busy” etc. I’m going to respond with, “I’m not interested” and mean it! 

I am realizing more and more that my dislike for lies and what I interpret as game playing stuffs me into a wee little container along with the few others who feel the same way.  But, hey!  I’m not in my teens anymore, I was married for nearly twelve years, and if I’m going to be in a relationship I want nothing less than complete honesty!  Am I being too honest in this post?  Maybe so, but you do know this is my blog :-).    If my beliefs cause me to check the “single” box for the rest of my life, so be it.  I will never settle for a man who lies (whether in the white, gray, black, purple areas) again.  I still think that a person (not gender specific) who lies to themselves and others about small issues exhibits a predisposition to lie about the big stuff, the important stuff (lying to oneself can be pretty bad).  Okay *stepping down off of soap box* I’m done.  But what do YOU think about lying?  Good sometimes?  Bad all the time?  Don’t really care?  Remember, the poll! 

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16 thoughts on “Lies (White, Gray, Black, Purple)

  1. To me, there is a major difference between not lying and being totally honest. (A lot of people are lying on that poll!) I work on honesty as a part of a recovery program. I believe most people are around 60% honest. That doesn’t mean that they are lying 40% of the time. It only means that they are not willing to face certain truths and they’re not concerned with fessing up. I know it sounds funny to you, but I believe that being completely honest with yourself about what is happening in the deepest part of your soul is very difficult and it requires quite a bit of work and cannot be done by yourself, without help.

    • Ha-ha, I think you could be correct, Carl! I would agree and do not think it sounds funny at all. Everyone, at some point in their lives, will need outside, objective help in accessing and addressing those deepest parts. You’ve said it all!

    • Hi Carl –

      Good post. I have an example I would like to toss by you. I’m curious what you think about it.

      A husband tells his wife that he’s running to the Home Depot to pick up some painting supplies. The couple wants to finish their basement. He goes into the store quickly, stands in front of paint swatches, can’t decide on which colors to fool his wife with, and then randomly takes different color swatches. A rep asks him if he needs help. The husband small talks with the rep 1-2 minutes and leaves quickly; 5 minutes in and out. He hurries down the street to hook up with a mistress at a hotel for a couple of hours, or what ever. He’ll tell his wife later on, he couldn’t decide on what color paint to buy and delayed.

      Did he lie to his wife? Remember, he told her he was going to the store and he did, correct? He tells her he was having trouble making a decision and chatting with a rep at the store. His words didn’t lie, right? You know though, I’m wondering if his words did in fact lie since they are stated in a way to mislead the wife into thinking in a way that benefits his selfish cheating action; intentions! Those truthful words that he in fact really did do, were not truthful in the sense of his actions. So is not telling the whole truth a lie or not? Where do one’s motives come in to play when not lying and not telling the whole truth?

      The cheating husband’s trip to the store was not the reason why he left the house, as he led his wife to believe. His MOTIVE was to hook up with another woman. Oh wait though. His words didn’t lie. However, be most assured that his motives, eyes, action, and his heart all deceived his wife. This is unequivocally clear and evident, and beyond a shadow of a doubt.

      In your view Carl, did the husband lie or didn’t he? Also, do you think the husband knows he deceived his wife? You mentioned, “there is a major difference between not lying and being totally honest.” What are the results, or consequences, that result in each one? I am also very curious how you describe those major differences between the husband not verbally lying to his wife and not being totally honest with his wife. How do those two variables you mention tie-in to a lie, lying, motives, actions, and the conscious effort the husband made to assure what he tells his wife will be truthful?

      Have a good Friday evening. :)

      • Charlie/B,

        My brain hurts at this one (j/k). Too tired to make coherent statements (I think). Words that appear sincere can be dishonest if the intentions behind them are to deceive (plus he did lie by omission). You are right on. Those words, therefore, are wearing masks. We all know he lied! Lol. It appears you made it to the gym and have lots of those endorphins racing around!!!! :-) Good for you! Share, please? Have a good night!

        Get to it Carl! (and no bringing Chara or Metallica into this one)

    • Charlie,
      The Bruins won tonight, so life is good. The Bruins never lie cheat or steal, and the Flyers always do, especially when the Metallica is playing. However, I must say I was thrilled to hear The Prodigy, full blast, in Boston before that face-off after the game-clinching goal late in the third period.

      Your scenario is a good one. My opinion, which has plenty of defects, would say that lies by omission are as bad as lies by commission. I think it is easy for most people to understand when they have done the latter, but most overlook their actions in relation to the former, and that’s what I mean by that big difference. For me, the consequences of both types of dishonesty are equally bad, but the real danger is that lying by omission can result in lying to yourself about whether or not you are lying, so the omission thing is extremely dangerous to both parties in my book. I believe that the greater your self-awareness, the better you are at being honest with yourself which in turn allows you to be honest with others.

      I also believe that there are situations when it is best to omit certain truths to certain people when doing so does no benefit to anyone and in fact hurts people, and when at the same time holding back the truth doesn’t hurt anyone, but I think making those judgments requires the best of self-awareness because you can’t let selfish motives make the decision for you.

      After learning some lessons in an unpleasant way, my new measure of the truth for people who are close to me is that there shall be NO SECRETS. It’s a great method for imposing honesty on yourself, but it requires courage.

      I never want to sound preachy – A couple years ago, my self-measurement was about 65% honest. Today, it is about 85%, maybe even 90%. I don’t think I’ll ever hit 100% but I like the trending. :-)

      • Carl,

        LOVE IT! But you’re making me feel sad, bad, and depressed about not being able to watch the game. I have been forced into early hockey withdrawal b/c of lousy cable and a location that does not feel NHL is important enough to televise. . .BOO! Ha-ha! My son is a huge Flyers fan and I’m a fair weather one and I think he would disagree wholeheartedly about Metallica impacting their tripping, boarding, and hooking ;-). It’s okay. We can agree to disagree.

    • Pamela,
      What third world country are we talking about? Not televising playoff hockey? Might as well throw the TV out the window!!!

      I would never want to imply that it is Metallica’s fault that the Flyers are a bunch of thugs. I think the players saw too many films of the Broad Street Bullies from the 70’s. :-)

      I love all hockey, but it is funny when you choose a team to root for, the other team instantly explodes on the villain scale. This is really difficult sometimes, like last year, I loved the Habs, but this year I wanted to see the Bruins get past them. Which brings me to a serious point: The Habs and the Bruins should NEVER meet in the first round – It should be against league rules.

      • Carl,

        I know, it’s bad! Who knew South Florida could be so. . .so. . .snobby? Basketball, baseball, tennis, golf, bowling, ant racing, but no HOCKEY? If I was in north or central FL I’d be alright. . .bummer!

        I’m Nurse Mom and home with my sick daughter (where I want to be) while my family is out celebrating my nephew’s first communion:-( and hockey would have given me some joy. Just not the same listening to it on the radio.

        Ha-hahaha, they do kinda present as mobsters you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley!

        Yes, true! I’m still a loyal Panthers fan but I have to have another team to root for when it comes to play-offs (unfortuately lol). Agree, they should not meet. . .brutality! :-)

  2. Like you I hate lies but I will be honest and say that I have told a few white lies to spare the other’s from being hurt because I have been known to be quite blunt… ( I look at it as being honest)
    I will not lie…… I have lied/been dishonest in the past….
    I will face my judgment when my time is up…..

  3. Pamela, glad you mentioned this :) Don’t think I’ve ever read a post on lying. The older I get the less lying I do – even little white lies bother my conscience. For instance, last Saturday a friend from out of town came to visit relatives here and called to invite me to dinner (or lunch) on Sunday. At first I agreed to go, but the whole day my thoughts were consumed with how much I DIDN’T want to go. And so I concocted one excuse after another in my head. After weighing all the excuses and feeling guilty about outright lying, I finally found the courage to call and tell the truth. Still, I didn’t tell the WHOLE truth. I omitted the most important part. In reality I wanted to stay home, chill, and watch the Celtics and Heat playoffs. But what I ended up telling her was that I didn’t feel up to getting out. Is it okay to tell a half-truth?

    • Good for you Debra! I like your writings because they are beautiful yet straightforward (just like you)!!!! xoxoxo
      Pamela
      P.S. Haha to the sports! If hockey was on, it would be tough to drag me away!

  4. A Woman :O Ah hah! I suspected that you were one of those female creatures, lol. What do you think gave it away?

    Your opinions are note-worthy and accurate. There are far too many “plays” going on in the relationship game. Very true indeed!

    Yes, 2 teenager boys. My youngest, a sophmore, turned 16 two weeks back. He brought his 18-yr. old soon to graduate gf over for dinner Sunday night, along with his older brother, a 17-yr. old junior.

    • Yes, I know you’re surprised ;-).
      Yes, too many plays and few out of the park home runs!
      Parents of teenagers should automatically receieve halos lol! Even when we have great, smart kids!

  5. OMG Pamela you’re so fast at writing, surfing, posting, navigating, commenting. I’m like 45 minutes behind you and probably only completed 1/3 of the tasks you’ve been doing. Now settle down there … don’t get a big head … I’m in a work-in-progress here ;) !!!

    Impressive post again. Regardless of how any of us perceive ourselves, undeniably every person lies and will do so for a lifetime. That being said, there is an enormous difference between liars (chronic), lying (prone to), and telling a white lie (occasionally to spare the hurt of another human being). All are bad, however we justify it. And in any scenario, we all have a decision to make in regards to the over-all well-being of others.

    Please don’t misunderstand me, because lying is wrong; even the tiny white lie is also. Yet we cannot be imperfect humans without doing it (often, time to time, or on that rare occasion). I by no means advocate lying, support it, or encourage it. There are cases in life where we (people) can be conflicted by it. :)

    • I’m a WOMAN and, consequently, an expert at multi-tasking ;-)!

      That is true. There is a distinction between habitual liars and the occaisional white lie. You are right in stating the white lies are often used to spare the feelings of another person.

      I just happen to have very, very, very strong opinions about the matter because of horrid, personal experiences. Hence, my “no B.S.” policy :-).

      Thanks for dropping by to clarify and I see you are the dad of teenagers as well! Whew! Lol.

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