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My constant lying is wrecking my life

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Hello Mark

I am 19 years old and ever since I was in third grade I have lied. Just little lies at first like what I like to do just to fit in with other kids. But I soon moved onto bigger lies. I stupidly told my best friend in school that my parents had been killed in a helicopter crash. I think I did if for attention, to be different, but when he found out we stopped being friends. Since then I've lied to girls that I am rich, that I have connections to the British royal family or that I a black belt in Karate. It's been so long since I've just been honest that I honestly don't know how to do it. I've left a trail of so many lies, so many people I've let down who will never trust me again.

I've just started seeing a girl I really like but have already told her my parents are both professors at a University (they are not). She is due to meet them soon.

Please help me stop this compulsive lying.

This question was submitted by 'Anonymous'

mark tyrrell

Mark says...

Hi and thank you for writing in.

The trouble with habitual lying is that not only do other people feel you are treating them with contempt (whether or not that's the intention) but you weave such a tangled web you, yourself, can almost forget what the truth is. Truth telling needs to become a habit for you just as lying has.

Just as you started off telling small lies and they got bigger and bigger, begin by telling small truths daily about anything but especially about things you might normally lie about. If you don't like a movie, say so. Tell 3 small truths you wouldn't normally tell a day. Not necessarily painful truths ('you look lousy!') but neutral truths so you can start to gain the truth habit. Then move on to bigger truths. Check out my article on compulsive lying too.

Now as far as your girlfriend is concerned.

You are, I think, going to need to come clean with her before she meets your parents. Tell her you don't know why you did it, perhaps you like her so much you wanted to impress her, but you told her your parents are professors when they are not. Be prepared to take the consequences from her. Tell her that you are determined to be honest in future and you hope she can forgive you for this. Don't lie to get out of that lie.

Listen to the 'Stop Compulsive Lying' download everyday until you notice it naturally feels easier tell the truth. Also look at what needs the lying may have been trying to meet for you. Was it the need for attention, positive approval, excitement, wanting more friends, wanting to be loved? All these are healthy needs but they also have to be met in sustainable and healthy ways.

I wish you all the best for your future,


watch icon Published by Mark Tyrrell - November 29th, 2013 in

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