Compulsive Lying

person taking oath and crossing fingers

Compulsive lying describes a condition in which a person tells falsehoods out of habit, sometimes for no reason at all.  It is also known as pathological lying, mythomania, and habitual lying.

A German physician named Dr. Delbruck first described the condition in 1891. Five of his patients had a habit of telling excessively large lies. He named their behavior pseudologia phantastica (spelled pseudologia fantastica in American English).

Symptoms of Pseudologia Fantastica

Many people are dishonest on occasion. Yet pathological liars tend to lie more frequently regardless of context.

Habitual lying often has the following traits:

  • The lies are believable and may have truthful elements. A person who has the flu might tell co-workers the symptoms are in fact AIDS or some other serious illness.
  • The lying continues for a long period of time and is not caused by some immediate pressure. A person who lies repeatedly about an affair would typically not qualify as a habitual liar, since the lies result from the desire to keep a secret.
  • The lies tend to present the person lying in a positive light. A person is more likely to lie about having a Ph.D than claim they dropped out of high school.
  • The lies have an internal—rather than external—motivation. A child with abusive parents might lie compulsively to avoid harm.  These falsehoods would not be considered compulsive because the lying is motivated by an outside threat.

Before determining that someone is lying compulsively, clinicians will generally rule out other possible causes. Someone who has delusions or false memory syndrome is unlikely to qualify as a habitual liar. In general, a pathological liar must recognize they are saying something untrue.

Compulsive Lying vs. Pathological Lying

The terms “compulsive lying” and “pathological lying” are often used interchangeably. Medical literature currently does not differentiate between these terms. Yet there are professionals within the mental health community who classify the terms as subtly different conditions.

In this framework, compulsive lying is the habit of telling falsehoods uncontrollably. People in this category may be more comfortable telling lies than telling the truth. They may lie repeatedly about important as well as unimportant matters.

People who lie compulsively often have no ulterior motive. They may even tell lies which damage their own reputations. Even after their falsehoods have been exposed, people who lie compulsively may have difficulty admitting the truth.

Meanwhile, pathological lying often involves a clear motive. A person may lie to gain attention or admiration. Other lies may be designed to garner pity or help from others. Even self-harming lies may provide some form of internal gratification.

People who lie pathologically may mix falsehoods with the truth to make their lies more credible. As such, pathological lying is often considered a subtler form of manipulation than compulsive lying.

What Causes Compulsive Lying?

Psychologists disagree whether compulsive lying can stand alone as its own diagnosis. Currently, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) does not recognize it as a separate mental health condition. Yet compulsive lying does appear as a symptom of several larger conditions.

Compulsive lying may be a symptom of:

Compulsive lying rarely indicates psychosis. People who lie compulsively can often identify their accounts as lies. Thus, they are not distanced from reality.

Some psychologists believe a person’s environment plays a large role in compulsive lying. A person may live in a context where deception creates advantages. If a community does not assign firm or consistent consequences for lying, a person may believe the benefits of lying outweigh the risks. Lies might also be a coping mechanism for low self-esteem or past trauma.

Despite these short-term benefits, compulsive lying often backfires in the long run. A habitual liar may feel extreme stress from keeping track of their falsehoods. They may struggle to live up to their own claims. If their lies are exposed, their relationships will likely grow strained. In some cases, they may face legal consequences.

Treatment for Compulsive Lying

People who lie compulsively are encouraged to seek the help of a qualified therapist. A therapist can help habitual liars understand their condition and the way it affects other people. They may also reveal underlying diagnoses such as bipolar or ADHD. In these cases, a therapist will likely treat all a person’s issues in tandem.

When a person lies to their therapist, treatment can be difficult. Treatment tends to work best when the person in therapy acknowledges their condition. If the person is forced into therapy, they are unlikely to cooperate. Ideally, the person in therapy will believe help is necessary and make a sincere effort to change.

When a person lies to their therapist, treatment can be difficult. Even if the therapist catches a lie, the person may refuse to admit their dishonesty. This resistance serves as another differentiation between compulsive and pathological lying. In treating pathological lying, some therapists have found it beneficial to address the lying as an addiction.

Either group or individual sessions can be beneficial in treatment. When a person’s lying has interfered with personal or romantic relationships, couples counseling can also be helpful. Behavior modification strategies such as role playing may be used to promote change and gauge progress.

Compulsive lying can be a challenging condition. But with time and effort, it can be treated. If you would like help to stop lying, you can find a therapist here.

References:

  1. American Psychological Association. APA concise dictionary of psychology. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2009. Print.
  2. Birch, C. D., Kelln, B. R. C. & Aquino, E. P. B. (2006). A review and case report of pseudologia fantastica. The Journal of Forensic Psychiatry & Psychology, 17(2), 299-320.
  3. Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders: DSM-5. (5th ed.). (2013). Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association.
  4. Dike, C. C. (2008, June 1). Pathological lying: symptom or disease. Retrieved from http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/articles/pathological-lying-symptom-or-disease

Last Updated: 05-8-2018

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  • Grady Dixon

    Grady Dixon

    June 20th, 2015 at 4:56 PM

    My girl friend grew up in a family where lying was a part of life. Her father was is politics which also included being state representative, states attorney, and having a private practice. All this after WWII where he claimed to be at the Nuremberg Trials, of which there is no evidence, and began his law practice in the State of Illinois. Illinois is one of the most politically corrupt states in the US. I have caught her in lie after lie. It seems she does this to make her seem much more intelligent than I. Any thoughts?

  • Staci

    Staci

    March 22nd, 2017 at 1:02 PM

    My girlfriend is the same way! We’ve been together 3 years and it’s ruining our relationship. I don’t trust her because of all the lies. Lies over big stuff and random stupid stuff. We had a good relationship but I second guess everything that comes out of her mouth. I don’t know if she should seek counseling alone or if we should do couples counseling. She admits that she lies even if she doesn’t admit to what it is she lies about and she has said she doesn’t know why she does it.

  • Ryanlaw

    Ryanlaw

    March 25th, 2017 at 1:23 PM

    Why are you choosing to stay with a woman you know you can’t trust? There are so many healthy loving single women who want a good man. Part of your girl’s therapy should be losing you. Consequences ofteb spark behavior changes. There is no motivation for her to stop lying, especially if she gets to keep you around to hear her long tales.

  • Brooke

    Brooke

    March 29th, 2017 at 7:52 PM

    My husband is the same to a T! He lies about EVERYTHING,even after the lie is exposed..We’ve been married 10 years and have 8 children and his lies have ranged from telling ppl he has cancer to what he fed the kids for dinner..He lost his job of 15 years BC of his lies…Then the lies got worse…He said he got a new job,3rd shift and left every night to be at work at 10pm and came home by 8 am ,but when it came time for him to get a paycheck he had somany excuses of why he didn’t get paid like they didn’t do his time right or they forgot to do direct deposit so he had to pick up a paper check but they accidentally mailed it and it got lost in the mail etc…Come to find out ,he didn’t even have a job.period…He WS just lying constantly to everyone and it caused us to lose my job and we lost our home..We lost everything…He’s not a bad man and I don’t think he’s being melicious or purposely trying to hurt us,I just think he lies to save himself from disappointing us or from being embarrassed but I can’t take it anymore. I’ve cried and begged for him to just stop lying but he says he doesn’t even know why he lies so much ,so how do u help someone who doesn’t even know why they do what they do? He literally can’t tell the truth..About anything…The kids and I are the ones that suffer the consequences of his lies and I’m the one that has to fix all his mistakes and answer for his lies..He’s a coward, like a little child that’s scared of his shadow…I love him dearly and want to keep our marriage together, but something has got to give..I can’t mentally handle anymore

  • Sasha

    Sasha

    May 11th, 2017 at 10:39 AM

    Ryanlaw, you are totally right. There is no point in being in a relationship with a pathological lier. I was in a relationship with a woman who had these problems and it ruined me totally in those two years when together. Problem was that I really loved her, really and totally. Red lights started to show after one year and then the second year I think I was like six, seven times already decided to finish with it, but LOVE dragged be back. But, eventually I crossed the line of no return, at the end it comes to that… it’s building inside and building, but at the end for the sake of my mental health I had to do it. Still miss her very much but I begged her more than 10 times to change that with or without my or other’s help. Being in a relationship with a pathological liar is a destructive thing, I wish that to nobody.

  • Seth

    Seth

    July 3rd, 2017 at 6:13 AM

    My girl friend lies constantly a bout everything. Exspecially when it is something that will upset me. Even after i already know the truth she continues to lie. This in turn has caused alot of problems between us. I am right there on wits end trying to figure out what to do. Now i feel like it is at the point of no return cause i dont know that i can trust her. I think the only thing left to do is break up

  • Ed. R.

    Ed. R.

    September 17th, 2017 at 9:42 AM

    After reading all the comments here I have a better understanding of compulsive lying. It started with the death of my father. I already had a step father and a mother who was suicidal all my life. I was 12 years old. Next was highschool graduation and my escape from home, or so I thought. College was in my sights but my step father insisted that I join the military. The Air Force and within the first year I began a lifetime of escape from childhood. I figured no one knew me so I could create any past life I wanted. This has continued to date. My lies have never been for profit or to take away from anyone, rather to run as far from the truth as possible and now I have lost a partner of 10 years. I created an identity of a happy and stable family life that through social media and the internet was exposed by partner in anger and has labeled my not only a liar but a pedophile, thief among others. I was our sole financial bread winner, at times holding down 3 jobs because my partner didn’t work. The few sentences I have shared with you here are only a fraction of my story. I am seeking out help through the VA and have accepted that what my partner is doing through social media is what I deserve. I am a liar, but not any of the other things he has branded me with. Thank you for reading.

  • Penelope T B

    Penelope T B

    November 13th, 2017 at 9:02 AM

    Like it says in the article, it might be a way of making a “new life” Me and my boyfriend of 9 months had just broke up because I had created this personna to try and cover up my oh so boring life. Your partner, friend, or family member needs closure. They need to know that they are perfect themselves, and you also need to get to the fact that they have a problem- but will fix it in order to keep the relationship. I, myself, say it is very “addicting” and is hard to stop. You just have to find the right reason to stop, and the results will come. I’m a very big christian gal, and so I pray for the strength to carry on, and I pray for all y’all having troubles too. Never give up, and it’s never to late to make a change.

  • Kristie

    Kristie

    January 1st, 2018 at 9:34 AM

    I feel for you I’m going to the same thing. Four years of Non-Stop lying over everything. I used to just let a lot of it go till I found out he was talking to other girls behind my back. We were on the outs and I wasn’t really living here but he still couldn’t own up to it. I will give him evidence in black and white and he will still stand there and deny it. At first it was forgivable because he was just telling me what I wanted to hear, I thought. It’s just out of control now and I don’t know what to do. The worst part of everything is he gets so angry when he gets caught and his temper is just ridiculous. Have you gotten any help since you wrote this?

  • Miyabi

    Miyabi

    July 3rd, 2017 at 1:54 PM

    If you are dealing with other members in your family lying I have some tips if you want to help the get better. Sit down and help them understand they have a problem, but you will support them. If they don’t admit they have one that is a separate problem but if they do just say read a couple articles. And if you see them still lying don’t get mad or yell at them just show the benefits in your life of telling the truth and they will understand. Ask them tough questions that you think they usually lie about a couple times a week and see if they answer honestly, when they do reward them.

  • Jo W.

    Jo W.

    November 16th, 2017 at 4:04 AM

    Hi I saw in the comments something about getting someone else to ask you questions about something that they would normally lie about. It’s not something I do all the time or maybe it is but in my own head and about myself that no one else know abouts and that never gets voiced out of me. I want to know more tips on how to be come more honest with my wife and more importantly myself.

  • Cd

    Cd

    January 1st, 2018 at 10:08 PM

    I finally had enough. The pain that this person caused was all deliberate. Thinking back of all the events he knew hecwa going to lie so in order to get people to believe him he had to come up with ways to make his story seem true. He made up fake email accounts from people he worked with and also fake phone numbers. Everyone has paid the price for all his lies except him. He has stolen money and jewlery, company credit cards. You name it he did it. What’s worse is that he even hurt his own son. We had to cut him out of our lives and start fresh.

  • Michele

    Michele

    March 7th, 2018 at 6:47 PM

    My Mother has a serious problem, I am the only person that has tried to confront & help her, therefor I am the only person she hates, because I know her best (she knows that) and she can’t stand to be confronted all the time. She tells big lies that hurt people, especially about myself. She has lost her relationships with two Husbands, myself & my Brother yet she lays the blame on everyone but herself. I have tried to understand, help, cover up for her, make excuses for her and I just can’t anymore. She is out of my life for good or until she agrees to get help.

  • Ann-Marie

    Ann-Marie

    April 22nd, 2018 at 8:06 PM

    Hi, are you a therapist? Bi would really like some more information on what you said.

  • Kirra M.V.

    Kirra M.V.

    November 17th, 2015 at 9:10 PM

    Would it be normal for me, if I suffered from this, to be aware of this. I think I may suffer from this and it has ruined my life. I lie about everything, without meaning to. I have to keep it up, almost like a second life. I’ve gone too far to come clean now.

  • John

    John

    December 12th, 2015 at 3:50 AM

    Kirra

    You are not alone. It’s a prison. Self made. I have no answer on coming clean.

    However, it is not too late to stop lying to yourself. At least then internally you are not a lie, even if externally other peoples perception of you is somewhat false. The worst thing that can happen is that you believe your own lies.

    Try telling yourself the truth in the mirror. It helps sometimes.

    Another trick I use when the urge to lie comes is to breath. Deeply in and out. And with the out breath expel the lie. It’s not real and nothing unreal belongs in your body, mind or soul.

    Good luck.

  • Tee4533

    Tee4533

    September 17th, 2016 at 7:25 PM

    That’s John for your input.

  • Hafsah

    Hafsah

    March 13th, 2017 at 6:54 AM

    I think i also suffer from this disorder, i am a teenager but i always let my imaginations run wild, i tell people things i imagine and thats how it goes on and on every passing day. I also keep imaginary friends, anybody who is doing that also?

  • Devon

    Devon

    July 29th, 2017 at 8:42 PM

    Thank you John for the help. I suffer from this and I am aware of it. I realize that my lying negatively affects those around me, also it Hurst my personal and work relationships. Its just that I do it subconsciously, almost like second nature or instinct. I think that I really need help but I dont know where to go to get it. People have tried helping me but every time it gets brought it isn’t long before something shoves it to thw back of my mind again. I am able to tell the truth sometimes but I have to make a conscious effort to do so. Its not even big things that I lie about its little stuff that doesnt even matter half the time. I really want to stop but for some reason I cant. The feedback on this page has helped some but it only tells me things that I’m already aware of.

  • David

    David

    May 15th, 2017 at 9:28 AM

    I also live with this. It took an entire life change to finally adjust to living with it.
    It started out as just stories when I was a child…it morphed into BS artist in my
    teens, and I became a full blown pysciopath in my 20’s . Take a minute before you speak. Ask a stranger something arbitrary, and unimportant, fight the urge to respond with a lie.
    If you can not, try, try again.
    I think this is the first step…. admission, knowing you have this problem, but being unsure how to address it.
    I’m 51 years old, and it has taken my entire life to “manage” it. I don’t think it ever goes away, and stress only worsens it. I would suggest you find one person that doesn’t know you at all, then restart your life with a clean slate. Find work that doesnt have human interaction. I became a trucker.
    I wish you luck. If you are ever in need of a friend who understands…..
    PS…David isn’t my real name

  • linda

    linda

    October 3rd, 2017 at 8:52 PM

    Hafsah,
    I wanted to answer your question about you having imaginary friends and it lead into why I am on the site. Hope it helps.
    When I was in high school I started thinking about how interesting it would be to talk to characters from tv and books instead of real people. I always knew they weren’t real but I spent so much time imagining them that I preferred them to the people I knew or new people I would meet. I spent 16 years constantly wishing they were real. The thoughts stopped when I met my friend 8 months ago. And it turns out he is a compulsive liar.

    Which is why I am here. I am not sure how long he has had this problem but I suspect he learned from his mentor and they have been lying so long it a normal thing. While my friend admits that his mentor is untrustworthy and that neither one of us should tell his mentor that we know what he has doing. The 3 of us are moving into a house together. His mentor uses his money as a way to control us and wants me and my friend to get married but we don’t feel that way about each other but my friend doesn’t think it’s a big deal. His mentor knew about more unhealthy relationships I have had in the past and then present. My friend said knew what his mentor was doing could emotionally damaging and he tell him to stop making me closer to him. When I realized how obvious my friend was to the fact of how dangerous this man’s lies and manipulations were I didn’t speak to them for over month.
    Currently I am living with my friend and we are moving in with this other man in a month. During the time I wasn’t talking to them I had to suddenly move out of my roommates place in one day because she was overly attached to me. She saw me as a daughter who had been neglected and abused to the point of being suicidal. And I was inspirational because I not only survived but I am still an incredibly nice person who deserves to be protected from bad people who take advance of my kindness. Which is all true but even though she knew her suspicions about the mentor’s lies about my friend were right she was ok with me going back because the mentor loves me like a sister. But she wanted to kill him when she found out he owes me money. Then she threatened all three of us if I talked to them. I felt bad I couldn’t pay rent so moved back in with my parents’ hoarder house with my abusive father and my mom ( don’t get me started on her). After three weeks I realized I couldn’t survive at my parents house and just leave my friend he this man web. So I left my parent’s house when they were out town, went to his place, guessed his gate code and was sitting in front of his door waiting to talk to him. I told him somethings about how bad his mentor was but he blew me off. Since then I realized my friend’s lying is a compulsion. It is so bad he’s not even aware of some of the things he is saying. I am the only one in his life that not all knows the part of him that he hides from others, but also cares enough to help him by actually asking him what he wants out of life and not expecting money, sex, or constant attention from him in return. And he is trying to get me to hate him but it’s not sticking because he is not capable of doing anything that I could not forgive him for because I have through worse. Even with everything that has happen and everything he is just going to let happen to him, he’s still my favorite person in world. I would still prefer to be with him even if the good and bad people who claimed love to me were part of my life. Because he is at least trying to work on our relationship. He is trying to do the same thing for me that I am trying to for him.
    Sorry that this turned more into a rant.

  • Chloe

    Chloe

    July 8th, 2017 at 11:30 AM

    I feel the same why. I just don’t know why. ive ended up lying to my friends about big things its horrible I wish I could change all of my friends hate me now

  • Jennifer

    Jennifer

    January 18th, 2016 at 4:45 PM

    Well I’m glad I read this. I’ve been having a problem with it, as well. I’m starting to see a pattern though. Just wondering if anyone has any insight? I’m not going into too much detail, but the pattern goes like this: bad things happen, then things are finally OK, then I start compulsively lying during calm periods of my life, usually the lies are less brutal than the things that actually happened. I’m trying to understand myself but I don’t get it, I’m not like this :(

  • Kaylee

    Kaylee

    February 27th, 2017 at 8:12 PM

    I have this same problem and I’m only 17 I just dont know what to do

  • Daya

    Daya

    March 21st, 2017 at 8:09 PM

    So am I and it had taken a toll on my life that I never expected it to….

  • David

    David

    May 15th, 2017 at 9:53 AM

    Hello…
    I am a 51 year old man, and I struggled with this my entire life.
    I think you have the “coping” version of
    this disorder. Lies not meant to cover up something, or about really important things, but rather to paint a rosy picture… Is that you?
    Not trying to hurt anyone, not even trying to better yourself, just trying to get comfortable being you.
    Stress, mockery, shaming, outing, and abandonment are all the first responses. Mistrust, ignoring, and cast away are right behind. I had to change my ENTIRE life to change myself.
    New state, New friends, everything…
    Stumbled a lot, fell down a bunch too, but I kept trying. Start slowly…
    ask a total stranger something you already know. Listen and watch…
    You will soon see that you are not alone. You must find a few people to trust, keep them separate, and tell each of them one true thing, but never the whole story… The hardest thing I’ve ever done, is explain this to my son.
    He also has this disorder.
    If you ever need a friend that truly understands, contact me.
    PS…my real name isn’t David

  • sarah

    sarah

    June 2nd, 2017 at 3:39 AM

    David unknown name* please email me. Id like to speak to you. My life ruined because of my lies. 27 going on 50 and every time i start over i ruin it. I trust noone and stress and anxiety just make the lies worse. I dont knw where to begin or start. Literally and seriously.

  • Gemma

    Gemma

    June 21st, 2017 at 1:30 PM

    Hi, I am the same, I get stressed or lonely I lie

  • Ken

    Ken

    July 24th, 2017 at 2:38 PM

    I so get it. I’m 46 & wrecking my life. Have been for years. I lie to embellish my life & self but also to cover my tracks for responsibilities I avoid & hate myself for avoiding fear the consequences of the truth being found out. I have no kids or partner. My long term relationships years ago were ruined by my lies. I have had alcoholism & addiction problems that I have made true progress with. I don’t drink or do drugs anymore & haven’t for 10 years but I still have great difficulty meeting my responsibilities like an adult, & I need to be honest about this with people who matter to me & who are my supports in addiction recovery etc, but I’ve been lying to them so long about things that matter, that I’m scared to own up to them. I hate the coward I am for it. I’m right about to lose my job that I desperately need because of having awful attendance for true my ages now. My employer’s have been so patient with me, (a government job) but they’re over it now. Often I just won’t go to work but ring in sick instead, when I’m not really sick, because I don’t want to face going in. I can’t seem to sleep at night, though I don’t try hard enough, & then I feel too tired & this goes on for long stretches of time. See what I mean about not meeting my responsibilities? I don’t believe I suffer from genuine depression although that’s one of the main excuses I make up. I hate this cycle. I need to find courage.

  • Sansi

    Sansi

    August 7th, 2017 at 11:26 PM

    I am also suffering from this disorder or not! I don’t know, but I have a habit of telling too much lying. Because I don’t want to hurt anyone, I like to show the people that I respect their thinking ( but I don’t). In my childhood my father used to abuse me for a very little mistakes which may be normal for the other kids or children.so from there, i started to tell a lie, but I didn’t know that it will become my habit one day, and now I am breaked from inside. Today for a very tiny things I tell lie. But I don’t want it. This habit of lying is fucking my soul from inside. be a lier is great sin than be a bad person. And I am a sinfull person, I don’t know what the punishment is decided for me in the Justice of God.

  • Maech

    Maech

    October 10th, 2017 at 8:02 PM

    Im suffering like this. I dont know. And im confuse. I want to save my relationship. But i always ruin it by telling lies. Or even im telling the truth it seems like a lie. Please help me. I want to be a better person and dont judge for what i am. I dont like this. I dont want to be alone.

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous

    December 17th, 2017 at 8:01 AM

    I have such a big problem with this and i need help. Ive ruined my own life. Ive lost everything because of lying, my family, my friends, everything. Problem is, i now actually believe that im telling the truth about some things when i know im not. What do i do?

  • Maria

    Maria

    June 22nd, 2017 at 12:49 PM

    I wish I could understand this disorder more from a compulsive liars point of view but the truth of the matter is that no one will understand and perhaps that is why it is so hard to understand yourself. When it is all a lie who cans really understand. My boyfriend of 3 years and the father of my beautiful baby girl is a compulsive liar. He has also said that this person he is portraying to be is not him and that he will get back to his old self. Well the truth of the matter is that he is being himself, he just happens to be a liar. Someone with this problem needs to really start over, like suggested in other posts, and be more conscious of the damage being done every time they tell a lie no matter how big or small. It is like subconsciously reprogramming your brain to feel those emotions and consequences that your mind has tried so hard to hide behind the lies. Most importantly, only you can do this for yourself if you truly want to change.

  • Jeffrey

    Jeffrey

    April 25th, 2016 at 2:34 PM

    This article describes me perfectly. How can I best get help for my compulsive, pathological, and unbelievable lies? It is destroying my life. Please help!

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    April 25th, 2016 at 2:40 PM

    Dear Jeffrey,

    The GoodTherapy.org Team is not qualified to offer professional advice, but we do encourage you to reach out. If you would like to talk about this or any other concern with a mental health professional, feel free to return to our homepage, https://www.goodtherapy.org/, and enter your zip code into the search field to find therapists in your area.

    Once you enter your information, you’ll be directed to a list of therapists and counselors who meet your criteria. From this list you can click to view our members’ full profiles and contact the therapists themselves for more information. You are also welcome to call us for assistance finding a therapist. We are in the office Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time; our phone number is 888-563-2112 ext. 1.

    Kind regards,
    The GoodTherapy.org Team

  • Tee4533

    Tee4533

    September 17th, 2016 at 7:35 PM

    Thanks Jeffery. Your comment has helped me understand why a prisoner would be lying about to me, while sober, and looking at me straight in my eyes. Things like …..I didn’t get the $25, money that you sent me, because they took money out my commission for medication $5 btw, etc. So he didnt have even a few dollars for paper/envelopes left. But later he tells me that he wrote 3 letters to his attorney. This was just one of the many lies in a single visit.

  • PMcG

    PMcG

    March 30th, 2017 at 5:48 PM

    STOP LYING!!!

  • Crystal

    Crystal

    September 30th, 2016 at 3:01 PM

    I need help

  • GoodTherapy Admin

    GoodTherapy Admin

    October 1st, 2016 at 12:55 PM

    Dear Crystal,

    If you would like to consult with a mental health professional, please feel free to return to our homepage, https://www.goodtherapy.org/, and enter your zip code into the search field to find therapists in your area.

    Once you enter your information, you’ll be directed to a list of therapists and counselors who meet your criteria. From this list you can click to view our members’ full profiles and contact the therapists themselves for more information. You are also welcome to call us for assistance finding a therapist. We are in the office Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time; our phone number is 888-563-2112 ext. 1.

    Kind regards,
    The GoodTherapy.org Team

  • Shola

    Shola

    October 15th, 2016 at 8:50 AM

    My son , I’m concern about his lies.

  • Grace

    Grace

    November 27th, 2016 at 3:01 PM

    My husband needs help and I’m doing my best to support him even after all these years of his little white lies (some really big ones). We have a therapist who has seen him regarding this issue but unfortunately this has gone to the way side and he has not made any changes in his behavior.

  • Angel

    Angel

    June 8th, 2017 at 3:35 AM

    My husband has tore our family apart with his consittent lying. I have just found out he has been trawling gay dating sites for sex but met with one guy yet he doesn’t remember why or when or what happened. He has been lying for at least 6years. He comes from a good family, no lies but secrets. How do I tell our kids that what daddy says isn’t true? I can’t trust him with a phone, laptop or even a bank card! Am at my wits end

  • Dee

    Dee

    January 14th, 2017 at 3:46 PM

    I’m destroying my family!

  • Marylou

    Marylou

    January 17th, 2017 at 12:03 AM

    I can’t afford therapy, but I want to stop lying, what should I do?

  • Sherman L

    Sherman L

    January 31st, 2017 at 8:32 AM

    I am a compulsive liar and can’t seem to stop. I am in my 60’s and need some help before I die.

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    January 31st, 2017 at 10:25 AM

    Hi Sherman,

    Thank you so much for reaching out. If you are in immediate danger of hurting yourself, it is very important you seek help immediately. You can call 911 or your local law enforcement, or visit your nearest hospital emergency room. If or when you experience suicidal thoughts, you can call to talk to someone immediately at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 (TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY). You can also search for a therapist in your area for help with compulsive lying on the GoodTherapy.org directory by visitinghttps://www.goodtherapy.org/find-therapist.html.

    Please know there is hope, and help is available. We are thinking of you and wishing you the very best!
    Kind regards,
    The GoodTherapy.org Team

  • Leomar

    Leomar

    February 20th, 2017 at 1:16 PM

    I m still in love with all my exes and im acompulsive liar.
    Still TALK to all my exs and I’m a jerk

  • Nicole

    Nicole

    March 1st, 2017 at 1:16 AM

    My ex is a self aware compulsive liar. He’s told horrendous, well maintained lies (for seemingly no reason), and has been cheating on me for the last year. In the last few months he came clean about everything and it completely rocked my world. I feel like the smart thing would be to walk away and never look back but I’m finding it impossible to do so. I know there have been small lies since then, but am I deluding myself in thinking that this was a break through?

  • Tamara

    Tamara

    March 13th, 2017 at 12:17 PM

    Looks like we are in the same boat ;) Filed for divorce today after 9 years of being lied to and cheated on. Worst part was he always switched blame from him to me. Saying I was seeing things, even when all proof was on the table and I had the first colleague (I knew of) he cheated with on the phone… She was explaining and he was denying, even swearing on our then 3 year old daughter’s life. Now he even managed to take someone he is apparently cheating with (for over a year) with to his family abroad (who will justify anything he does, the golden boy)… Staying there for 3 weeks, lying about just about anything, spending money in resorts with a secret credit line which he took out… While keeping me and my daughter calm by saying we don’t have to worry, that he is dealing with several family members with illnesses. Lied about his father having cancer and being away three days to go see him. Told our daughter his father looked too ugly for a picture, cause of the cancer… (he is not even sick). Told us he paid the resorts for his father cause he was homeless, which he wasn’t… Turns out his father didn’t even know he was in the country… And I can go on and on. He does not feel guilt at all. Up until today, he said he has no one else. You can love someone, but when they destroy you completely it is not worth it.

  • Maria

    Maria

    June 22nd, 2017 at 1:12 PM

    Absolutely! Once your boyfriend was busted telling lies he most likely was a bit more cautious about lying for awhile. Without extensive therapy and the drive to want to change he will not get better. It will start all over again with little lies that turn into bigger lies. My advice is to escape the web of lies before it’s too late. I’m doing so myself and it is very hard and painful because of the love I have for this person. Although, ultimately, they will only drag you down emotionally with all the hurt and pain from the lies. It doesn’t bother them one bit to keep lying to you and everyone else. Get out girl!

  • Martin

    Martin

    March 20th, 2017 at 6:56 AM

    I need to stop lying before I lose everyone that is important to me. I don’t even need to do it it just happens and then I find myself inventing further stories to cover the initial lie. It’s incredible how twisted things can become and how fast things start to unravel without meaning to. Furthermore I find myself inventing new lies to cover up the lies that have been uncovered and I’ll swear blind that is the truth. This article has helped me put things in perspective I only hope I’m not too late

  • Shonda

    Shonda

    June 24th, 2017 at 4:01 AM

    Yesterday was my birthday and the day that my wife became fed up. We’ve been together 26 years have a 9 year old daughter. She’s tried she has stood by me even when my lies were an embarrassment to her. I lie about anything and everything, big or small it doesn’t matter and I don’t understand it. I have been this way as long as I can remember. I hate it. I hate myself and just want to be normal. I can almost say it started as a way to protect myself from being hit as a kid thinking I would say whatever I had to say to keep my mother from hitting me. and then when I went to school most kids hated me or made fun of me for my hair (my mom never helped me learn how to care for my hair properly) or my clothes (most never fit properly or were dirty I didn’t know how to do my laundry) so I started to lie to get the other kids to like me because I craved human interaction that didn’t involve me getting screamed at or beaten. so I just started to tell these wild stories and then before I knew it mostly everything that came out of my mouth was a lie. I met my wife in jr. high and then I had to deal with the hatred from my parents an family for being gay. So I started to lie again. and now almost 20 years later I was still lying. No one trusts me and outside of my wife no one wants to be bothered with me; so I started creating fake profiles online and living these alternate lives (made up families and spouses) my wife found out when I left my lap top open. she said she was on the verge of leaving and told me I needed to get help. So I did and was diagnosed with ADD and PTSD and major depression and for no reason that I can explain or understand I started to abuse my ADD medication as well as stealing narcotic medication from my wife’s elderly aunt who was living with us; she moved to another state so I no longer have access to Narcotics. So on my birthday (yesterday) we were invited to my wife’s sister’s house for my birthday and I had taken too many pills and was a total mess. I passed out in the middle of my dinner. I woke up to my wife stating she was done and she wouldn’t deal with my bullshit anymore. she went to bed and I think she is done with me and quite frankly I can’t blame her. I would love nothing more than to die right now. I have ruined my life because I can’t tell the fucking truth because I can’t be normal. I need help so bad I just want to tell her I’m sorry but I’ve said that one too many times. I don’t want to be like this, I want to be with her and raise my daughter. I need help. I can’t do this on my own.

  • Tina D

    Tina D

    March 21st, 2017 at 9:19 AM

    I know how you feel. Im with my best friend from my child hood. I never expected him to treat me like this and lie to my face. Hes had someone else almost the whole three years we have been together. Now i find out im pregnant and dont know what to do. He says hes happy and wants to change for our family. Hes 45 and never had a baby even after trying for years with his ex. I wanna trust that he wants help but how can i. Any sugestions please help i need it.

  • Victor

    Victor

    March 21st, 2017 at 7:07 PM

    I need help

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    March 21st, 2017 at 8:16 PM

    Hi Victor. If you would like to consult with mental health professional, please feel free to return to our homepage, https://www.goodtherapy.org/, and enter your zip code into the search field to find therapists in your area. If you’re looking for a counselor that practices a specific type of therapy, or who deals with specific concerns, you can make an advanced search by clicking here: https://www.goodtherapy.org/advanced-search.html

    Once you enter your information, you’ll be directed to a list of therapists and counselors who meet your criteria. From this list you can click to view our members’ full profiles and contact the therapists themselves for more information. You are also welcome to call us for assistance finding a therapist. We are in the office Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time; our phone number is 888-563-2112 ext. 1.

  • Scott

    Scott

    March 24th, 2017 at 12:13 AM

    Is there any way I can help a friend who has some awareness of their pathology but isn’t likely to be open right now to me sending links or resources?

  • Tristen n

    Tristen n

    April 8th, 2017 at 2:19 PM

    I need help telling the truth.i can’t stop lying..im scared of the consequences of my actions. I lie im cold im selfish im spiteful to those who love me. I can’t be faithful or just a real person. I dont appreciate anyone but myself.everything i say is a lie

  • Jake

    Jake

    April 29th, 2017 at 1:25 AM

    Tristen,
    Did you tell the truth in the post you made? If you answered yes, no matter how insignificant it might seem, you just told the truth.
    Recognize and place values on truths, try telling a bigger truth next time while being aware of how it makes you feel.

    I’ve been lying as long as I can remember, when I was a little kid I remember writing my own name on the hallway walls of my house in marker/crayons and lying about it being someone else that had done it (probably blamed it on one of my 3 siblings). It mainly was just smaller white lies for a very long time that normally were driven by a personal benefit and I used to feel guilt for doing things wrong and lying to not deal with the consequences of some of my actions. About a year and a half ago my parents separated (I never expected it in a million years, I thought they got my siblings and I together to announce that they were finally going to let my younger sister get a dog). It was an absolute shock because they were always passive aggressive and would never fight. I am aware that I will forever be changed as a person. I used to use my creativity to find clever ways at finding a positive outlook on just about everything. Initially I had no idea how to tell my friends and frankly was, and still am, trapped in my own shame and embarrassment. Hindsight is 20/20, internalizing all of the stress was the wrong move. Since then I have told only 4 people outside my family and have lied on a daily basis to my 3 room mates that everything is “all good.” I live at school, 3 hours away from home and have pushed a majority of my old closest friends away because cutting off communication is easier than keeping up the tremendous lie that I continue to build every day. I’m not sure if I’m depressed, but I definitely see things in life from a more cynical perspective now and sometimes question my own sanity. I rarely get more than a couple of hours of sleep and being physically drained is starting to take a toll on my life because I end up being lazy, skipping class and work for extended periods of time. It got to the point where I stopped going into work completely for no reason and planned to lie my way out of it like I had 15+ times in the past, but was so lazy that I never ended up saying anything. I did formulate a lie to tell all the people in my life who care about me, blaming being “let go” on my boss saying that he asked me to resign for a number of different reasons. My schoolwork has gone way down in the last year and a half and the stress of not finding a job after graduation (in two weeks) is indescribably overwhelming. Both my parents handled the divorce differently; my dad used it as an opportunity to better himself and increase his love and affection towards everything and everyone, my mom moved out of my childhood home and is more distant than I could have ever imagined (I’m convinced she has no more love for me, but I think it might be a lie that I have formulated to keep my distance from her and her new significant other who I don’t feel comfortable around). About 2 years ago I found a way to charm the actual greatest human being I’ve ever met and I’m thankful that she told me that I need to figure out what is putting strain on our relationship. I’ve been true to her to the best of my abilities and have kept lying to a minimum. I need to figure out a lot more than just compulsive & pathological lying in my life, but finding this article was a great place to start.

    My best regards go out to anyone who is to the point of visiting this page, whether for yourself or for someone you care about.
    J.A.

  • Dev

    Dev

    May 18th, 2017 at 10:37 PM

    Jake,
    Your story breaks my heart. Please know that your life is your own. It is so easy to become confused by the experiences of our parents, and other people who we care deeply about – unless you can realize that no matter how much you may love and value these people, none of them have ownership over YOU! You belong to YOU! No one else. Consider putting in writing all the things you hope and dream for; then look at that list and envision how you CAN make it come true.
    Your life belongs to you. No matter what others around you say, think or do, it is your RIGHT to live your life in a way that brings you personal happiness.
    Seek out those people who reinforce this.
    This doesn’t mean you have to stop loving your dad or your mom. Just understand that their story is not your own.
    You deserve to be happy, and you do not have to carry anyone else’s burden. I’m sure both of your parents love you very much, and they would want nothing more than that.
    Pursue those things that bring you joy, and know that you are strong enough, intelligent enough, to walk away from those things that would undermine you.
    Recognize that our compulsion to lie is often because of shame, and fear of rejection. But all human beings make mistakes, have failures. Being honest about your human-ness will make you a hero to those who are struggling.
    Being the person who admits to your weaknesses and shortcomings, while striving to do better, is more inspirational to those around you than the person who seems to “have it all together”.
    Remember, above all else, this is YOUR life…make it what you want!
    I wish you the BEST!

  • D

    D

    July 8th, 2017 at 9:48 PM

    Lying basically comes down to either just telling your truth, or selling your truth, and once you decide the right course of action is to play someone, then it doesn’t truly matter if you are being factual or not, you are still playing them. It is the difference between objective reporting and opinion. Objective is just the facts and opinion is when someone tries to play others. That simple really. If you want to stop lying then stop playing people, and just be you.

  • Hurt By Liars

    Hurt By Liars

    August 5th, 2017 at 3:14 AM

    Admitting it–even anonymously–is a huge step in the right direction. People usually lie for one of three reasons:

    – To make themselves and their lives seem more interesting/low self-esteem
    – To avoid some unpleasant outcome (such as getting in trouble for doing/not doing something)
    – To obtain a desired outcome (such as a promotion, compliment or reward).

    Once you identify the reasons underneath your behavior, you can start to change it. You will probably need a therapist’s help to work through your issues, which is perfectly fine. Friends & family aren’t equipped to be objective and give us the professional guidance we need. Set your intention to reduce the number of lies you tell each day until eventually the number is zero. It may take a long, long time and come with a lot of setbacks but you must be persistent. Understand that your lies are not harmless actions, they violate others & damage your trustworthiness. The consequences of getting caught in a lie can be much worse than the consequences of just being truthful from the start. And it must be hard to remember which lie you told to which person, right? Your life will become so much more simple once you escape the prison created by your lies.

  • Colette

    Colette

    May 3rd, 2017 at 1:54 PM

    I’m a pathological liar, I know it too. I’ve been lying for as long as I can remember. I lie to myself about things that have happened so much that my memories are twisted around because I do not remember what really happened. It ruined my relationship with my boyfriend, and he’s the one who just straight up told me I was a pathological liar, I didn’t realize it until he told me so I looked into it and damn he was right. I just can’t stop lying, sometimes I’m not even sure if I’m lying about something. I think how it started was that I began to lie to myself about a family member who sexually abused me as a kid, I told everyone he was dead and I believed it too for a long time. I had the entire story planned perfectly, how he died and the day he died, the funeral, etc. none of that never even happened. I saw him a month or so ago and it took me weeks to process it. I think because I learned to lie to myself so much about that, and other things, that it just became a habit. It’s destroyed my relationships, it’s destroyed my mental health. I want help but it seems like there aren’t any therapists for this sort of thing.

  • D

    D

    July 8th, 2017 at 9:50 PM

    I am sure that lying will damage the mind and yet, you are the only one who has enough self awareness I have read on this page so far, that notices this fact. Two points for you.

  • B

    B

    May 9th, 2018 at 1:42 PM

    I don’t know what to do
    I’m about to leave or try to help her, I know if I don’t help her she will have nothing and no one that wants her. I love her so much and I wanted to help for a long time but after 2 years I can’t believe her anymore and all the negative words and acking cruel I can’t do it anymore. I know deep down inside she loves me but then again maby I don’t.

  • D

    D

    July 8th, 2017 at 9:55 PM

    Also, you may have something along the lines of Borderline Personality Disorder. The psych industry recognizes that around 99 percent of all borderlines were molested, and yet, they don’t say that this is the cause. I will go one further and say that it was not your father.
    Borderline is not really a mental illness like they say, it is a coping mechanism for being molested in a household where somehow it seems okay that you are being molested. The more you sexualize men who seem not that interested, the closer you were to 13 when it happened, and if there are mental illness features, then it was before age 11. If it was age 16 it is hard to see the effects.
    It is a coping mechanism, not a mental illness, and if you accept it and understand it, you can get past it.

  • Steph

    Steph

    May 4th, 2017 at 5:48 AM

    I am so relieved to know my husband isn’t alone! It gives me hope that he is really a good person with a bad problem. I’m trying so hard to support him but the lies or constant. Big lies, little lies, unnecessary lies. Everyone tells you you can’t have a relationship without trust, but I’m not willing to throw our relationship away over something that’s not his fault.

  • Peter B

    Peter B

    May 15th, 2017 at 8:25 PM

    I want to receive a monthly newsletter about compulsive lying.

  • ahmed m.

    ahmed m.

    June 1st, 2017 at 1:40 PM

    what are the impacts of pathological lying to students

  • Melissa R.

    Melissa R.

    June 9th, 2017 at 1:58 PM

    I have a problem with manipulation and lying.

  • Kennedy T.

    Kennedy T.

    June 12th, 2017 at 8:33 PM

    I honestly don’t know what to do. I lie without even realizing it sometimes! It just happens and I don’t know how to stop it. Send help!!!!!

  • Lovingdaughter

    Lovingdaughter

    June 13th, 2017 at 5:12 AM

    Finally I’ve found a diagnosis for my mom. My mom lies about what state she was born in, because she’s embarrassed of being born in a southern state. She lie and tell ppl she’s married even went out and purchased herself a ring. She lies about her race to even her own children. She will lie about her age even if you do the math in front of her. Exposing different lies makes her upset and she will say we are being disrespectful to her. My sister and her grand children has distanced themselves. I’m in the medical field so I’m more compassionate and recognize this as a mental illness. I feel bad because she can never have a truthful and healthy relationship because she can never be honest. Even friendships doesn’t exist. She kept whom my father was because she was embarrassed that she was with my biological father who was married and unattractive. She told me another man was my father in which his family do it all along and never claimed me. This damaged my self esteem. She watched me struggle for many years because of this. She’s a great person and would make a wonderful wife to someone but she refuses help or refuses the fact that she have an issue at all.
    I hurt for her😢

  • JessicaT

    JessicaT

    June 17th, 2017 at 8:30 PM

    I lie. All. The. Time.

  • beca

    beca

    June 22nd, 2017 at 4:01 PM

    I need counselling for lying and cheating,2

  • Leonora

    Leonora

    July 5th, 2017 at 6:51 AM

    Someone I know– I’m not sure if he’s a narcissistic sociopath and/or a pathological liar or just schizophrenic. I’m rather obsessed with him even though I know that for my own sake, i’d better stay out of it. but… i can’t. he said that we would have been a perfect match but that he doesn’t have the same feelings towards me… and now he left for his home country. to me, he’s Sherlock Holmes; intelligent, delusional, mind reader, dark humored…(i vowed i would marry sherlock holmes). we understand each other perfectly well; each of us knows what the other is thinking/feeling… i suppose i’m just as damaged as he (like i don’t care if i live or die and we both never want to have children. traumatizing childhood for the two of us i suppose), however i’ve managed to pull myself together. i’m 4 years his junior and obtained my university degree a month after turning 21. clean criminal record, never smoked, never engaged in anything irresponsible (with him it’s the opposite). he’s still a uni student. his girlfriend broke up with him when he was here( she’s a full psychiatrist. i’m wondering if she saw something).he says she broke up with him because she lacked the right social skills (that she, being a doctor, has spent her entire life studying– socially dysfunctional etc..). he says he loves her and wants to get her back (i’m not sure how, given that he won’t know her whereabouts) and that he would never betray her (i.e date someone else, even if he were now single ), yet he told me that he once met a girl at a bar who had a bf. she often came alone and flirted with my guy. he told her that he would invite her to lunch if she would dump her bf. of course she refused to and that was the end of it (but doesn’t that fall under his definition of betrayal?? ) he was engaged once ( at 22. fairly young age i believe. emotionally clingy? ) but his fiance broke off the engagement because he was “never there”. he hates his mother and is not on very good terms with his father. he says that he ran a company once but that he later sold it and spent the money travelling. however, i’ve Googled him often and could never trace any of his stated accomplishments. he was in the army for 4 years– entered at the age of 16, he says, yet isn’t the legal age 18?? anyway, i later found out that he had entered at the age of 18. i’ve noticed that he’s wickedly extravagant when it comes to drinking (i don’t know if he wastes money on other stuff too). in the 4 months that he spent here, he spent 10,000 USD (excluding rent and transport). i’m wondering if spending is one of the reasons for the failure of his previous relationships. i have a bit of a spending problem too; i spend too little and i was clear on that front. i just wonder if that actually placed an obstacle in our relationship, knowing that he can’t rely on me for financing– he had a joint account with his ex-gf and it’s one of the things that he thought of after the break up. in the semester that he spent here, he changed roommates twice. i just wonder… he also admits that he has some element of narcissism. we talk every week, but just about simple everyday stuff. when he was here, he kept on making up stories. he himself admits that he lies a lot– on his cv as well. i never confronted him, even though i could see through the lies.i just wanted to hear the stories. he has a funny way of recounting things (he says he’s been to NATO meetings. he was allowed to enter because he wore a dark suit and looked professional. yeah right). he was also very upset when one of his co-workers died of heart disease a couple of months ago. he kept on blaming himself for it (like he knew that the coworker was in need of financial assistance yet did not contribute in giving him a raise). i think he was giving himself too much importance. i spoke with him not long ago, telling him that i was pretty frustrated with things. he said that he felt the same, so i suggested that he find a part time job to keep his mind off of things. he replied that he was frustrated because he knew not in what direction to go as he had already received job offers. a few days later we speak again and i ask him for updates. he says nothing new, still on the job search but that one option looked particularly promising ! so, about the multiple job offers….? i’ll hopefully be in his home country in October for graduate studies…. i’m just trying to understand him. i so want to help him yet i don’t know how. my psychologist says that it’s impossible to change people but it makes me all the more determined. my psychologist has graduated and i won’t be able to see him anymore… i so want to discuss this … any ideas? please help !

  • Scott

    Scott

    July 8th, 2017 at 2:27 PM

    Pardon my bluntness, but it’s very difficult to understand you. There is no main thread to follow, just a lot of random bits of information about someone you may or may not really know (according to you, much of what he’s said seems questionable). You’re not exactly sure what he’s suffering from but you’re determined to fix him? I think the best advice for you is to seriously pursue help regarding your own mental health issues. You don’t sound like you’re in any position to help someone with identity problems until you get help addressing the very same issues in your own life. Good luck. (And for the record, “helping” someone and “changing” someone are two different things.)

  • Leonora

    Leonora

    July 19th, 2017 at 5:50 AM

    Hello Scott. Thank you for your message. I appreciate the honesty. I do have my issues yet I don’t have identity problems. i do have something in between the lines of co-dependence and this is precisely what is pushing me in wanting to help my acquaintance. i realize that helping and changing are two different things yet my aim is simply helping him. he has so much potential and it breaks my heart to see him waste himself as such.

  • Maria

    Maria

    July 6th, 2017 at 1:32 PM

    I think it is very easy to want to help this person because he has such an unethical problem. It is not okay though morally to run around telling lies to anyone. And the therapists are absolutely correct, you cannot change someone unless they realize they have a problem and want to change. And honestly, it may be darn right impossible to reform a liar because they will always have that itch to tell a tall tale. I say ditch the relationship and don’t look back. It will be hard to do so and you will still be inclined to help but it is ultimately beyond your control and expertise. Some liars go to therapy for years and still have no success at recovering.

  • Leonora

    Leonora

    July 19th, 2017 at 6:02 AM

    Hullo Maria. I thank you for your comment. I suppose you’re right, because knowing him, he would certainly deny lying. I’m rather inclined to believe that he won’t recover especially as his ex-girlfriend is a psychiatrist. Indeed, i’d be better off not getting involved in the entire situation, yet it is not particularly easy. he is so very clever and has great potential… it just hurts me to see him doing this to himself. i’d feel somewhat guilty if turn my back and go

  • Mary

    Mary

    July 19th, 2017 at 1:38 AM

    Before I start, I want to apologize for my bad english. Its not my native language so I tried my best.
    So Im facing this problem… I cant stop lying even if I try. Im 15 soon 16. My school life is ruined literally because of something horrible I did. Huge lies and wild stories… Im really happy that Im not alone, I saw more comments and I realized Im not the only one facing the same problem. Im lying because… my father and my mother divorced when I was 3 years old. I was living with my mother and with my grandparents at the same house. They would ALWAYS lie about my father. They said that he was a jerk and that he never loved me because he didnt want a daughter. They said that he only loved my brother (he is 6 years older) because he is a boy. And they would lie and lie about more things. Sadly I went through bullying in school because I wasnt good looking. I wasnt happy with myself so I started lying (white lies) until I realized that my lies werent that innocent anymore and that they turned into huge and horrible stories. I dont want to end up in a psychiatry, nor taking pills. I just want this to end. Lying isnt good and I know that. Im trying to stop this… any suggestions?

  • Maria

    Maria

    July 21st, 2017 at 1:30 PM

    Hi Mary, thank you for admitting that you have a problem. That is the first step to change. Many people who lie continue to deny that they do so. You are already on the right path to change. The best advice I can give you is to stop and think before you tell a lie. This will help you to become more aware of what you are about to say. Lying impacts more people than just yourself, so stop and think about how your lie is going to effect others as well as yourself. You will feel much better about yourself by being honest and it is courteous to others as well. Becoming a more conscious person is something we can all work towards because it will make the world a better place. It is ethical and morally correct to treat others how we expect to be treated. We are taught those values in school because it is true. Do you like to be lied to or does anyone like to be lied to? Most likely not. Think about all those things next time you decide to tell a lie and yhou may just deter yourself from lying. In the end, you will feel better about yourself if you treat others respectfully and others will feel better about you. And remember no one is perfect, we all lie occasionally but compulsively lying is not right or respectful to anyone.

  • Andrew

    Andrew

    July 28th, 2017 at 1:58 PM

    My ex-girlfriend broke up with me just over two months ago due to all my lies that I was saying about myself frequently.
    To give a history of who I am, I come from a very dysfunctional family. My dad was rarely ever there for me growing up and my mom would always scream in the house but she worked hard to raise me and my two sisters. When my dad was in town he tried to be in my life but when i did something wrong such as failing a test, or being stupid as I have my ADHD under control, i would get hit with the belt, broom stick, or pocker of the fireplace and go to sleep in pain. I went through 13 years of getting physically abused by my dad, 7 years of bullying in my last two years of elementary school and 5 years of high school, and then if my sisters did something wrong I took it upon myself to step in and take the beating as well as I did not want them to go through the pain so i had to coerce my dad to take his anger out on me and beat me up. There were days I would sleep and I woke up in pain beyond what I can explain and felt the pain of metal or leather still hitting my body. I used to lie about what I did wrong so that I can avoid the beating and i would compulsively lie to my friends in the process as it because natural.
    I lied to my ex girlfriend and my friends that I went through cancer when i did not, that i met certain special people (Eli Manning, Bill Clinton, Tom Brady), that I lived in Australia, that I was on a dating show that was actually filmed somewhere else but that it was actually filmed in the city i was in, make up stories, say that I visited other countries, say that I owned property, and I would never acknowledge my mistakes until I was called out. The fear of being alone, abused, or beat up always scared me so I have always hid away my past life by thinking people are out to get me by creating lies that make me seem better than I actually am.
    The lies I have created have affected my life. I lied to my work and that has caused me to get fired from 5 jobs in under two years, have a poor social life, lose the one girlfriend I have ever had that I truly still love, and contemplate suicide. I was recently in Arizona and I stayed at a friends place, I had his gun on the table and I considered what it would feel like to eat a bullet and just end my life on the spot. Would my friends, family, ex-girlfriend care if I did so? I had my finger on the safety and was prepared to put the gun to my temple and pull the trigger cause I want all the pain to end in my life.
    A life of physical abuse takes a toll on people, it really does. It is not easy to admit when we lie, but realizing how bad it is when we lose those people that we love is not easy at all either.
    A life of physical abuse has prevented me from knowing when and how to ask for help. I lied to my ex-girlfriend that I was going to see a social worker after my father died because I did not know how to ask her simply that I need help because I have always been so weak at asking for anything that asking for help it is not that it would make me feel just weak, but it makes me feel less than i am. I thought she should be the one asking me if I need help, but it should have been me going up to her asking her for help and I was not able to do that because I was scared about the pain and the abuse I have gotten in the past that I had no idea what her reaction would be.

  • I H8 Liars

    I H8 Liars

    August 5th, 2017 at 3:00 AM

    Habitual liars, regardless of the underlying pathology, are not good people.

    I was in a long-term relationship with someone who would lie to me about anything she perceived would cause an unpleasant reaction from me. Then when I found out the truth later, I’d be left to deal with double the pain–the stress of the original hidden situation in addition to the loss of trust in my partner. She never acknowledged her dishonesty and always defended it when confronted. She’d often badmouth me behind my back or tell friends things I wanted to keep between us, causing my baseline level of paranoia–which is pretty high due to a general distrust of people–to skyrocket, and rightfully so! Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you, as the saying goes.

    Needless to say, my ability to trust anyone for any reason is non-existent now. It’s not fun having to live in constant disbelief & skepticism of those you love (and those you don’t). Liars are cowards who cause more pain than good in the world. I don’t care how stigmatizing that sounds. Lying is emotional abuse, plain & simple. If your tactic for making life easier or more exciting is to lie, please go back and learn some basic social skills & ethics.

  • Cynthia

    Cynthia

    August 6th, 2017 at 3:35 PM

    No offense as I understand you are in pain, but there is a vast difference between mental illness and “bad people” and labeling people who are sick as “bad people” doesn’t not help anyone, only shames them, likely causing an escalation of the issue(s).
    I would strongly suggest you either seek greater understanding for this subject or a therapist of your own.
    Compassion, acceptance & forgiveness does not have to equal other than what they are.
    I hope you find peace.

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous

    August 10th, 2017 at 12:16 PM

    I myself have been a compulsive liar for years. It started at a mere age of 7 when I used to lie to Mom about grades etc in school. I kept lying my way through my teens repeatedly caught by my mother and few others who I completely distanced myself from due to embarrassment. I was also diagnosed with ADHD and personally I feel I have low self esteem. This however reached its peak when I was about 17 and my girlfriend had to point this trait of mine out to me. She was the first person to recognise that I actually have this problem. Our entire relationship was based on lies which caused her to leave me eventually but since then I have actively kept monitoring myself and the lies. Compulsive lying is a real illness. Often times I don’t even think before lying. My mind is just programmed to project myself a certain way and often times there was absolutely no hesitation. Now I’m 25 and I’m still battling this illness everyday of my life. I have to constantly think and watch what I say in order to keep this from happening. However, I have realised that this issue is so deep rooted, that my thoughts itself are based on lies.
    As I’m getting older, I have realised I have strained all the relationships in my life due to lies. I have lost many friends and some family too. I really hope I get better one day.

  • anthony

    anthony

    August 13th, 2017 at 6:58 PM

    My wife has been a compulsive liar our whole relationship. Now we have a 4 year old daughter and she has even had her lie for her. I dont want my daughter to have a broken home. We have tried therapy several times and sometimes there are moments of clarity but it never lasts. She is a master of manipulating the situation by always blaming me or accusing me of something that she is obviously guilty of. I just dont know what to do. Everytime she lies it takes a little piece of my soul away.

  • Bruce

    Bruce

    August 20th, 2017 at 8:40 AM

    The first step is admit that you have a problem. Find a good psychiatrist and a good therapist. Took me 39 years to admit this and finally i manage to tell my family what’s going on. Started with small lies and turned into an insane vortex of lies that affected my career. It’s easier to say that you have a drug problem than a compulsive liar problem so please, find help. You’re gonna take a stone from your soul. If you have a loved one with this problem take him to help because i was close to suicide because of all this trouble.

  • shitay w

    shitay w

    September 2nd, 2017 at 2:13 PM

    I tend to lie quite a bit. My neighbors dislike me and I was kicked off the neighborhood committee. I also lie at work and am very accomplished at it, but it’s starting to catch up with me. I’d like to learn more about this disorder

  • anne

    anne

    September 6th, 2017 at 5:29 PM

    help

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    September 6th, 2017 at 8:41 PM

    Hi, Anne. If you would like to consult with mental health professional, please feel free to return to our homepage, https://www.goodtherapy.org/, and enter your zip code into the search field to find therapists in your area. If you’re looking for a counselor that practices a specific type of therapy, or who deals with specific concerns, you can make an advanced search by clicking here: https://www.goodtherapy.org/advanced-search.html

    Once you enter your information, you’ll be directed to a list of therapists and counselors who meet your criteria. From this list you can click to view our members’ full profiles and contact the therapists themselves for more information. You are also welcome to call us for assistance finding a therapist. We are in the office Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time; our phone number is 888-563-2112 ext. 1.

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous

    September 8th, 2017 at 5:02 AM

    It is hard for me to admit, I lie. I have done things in my past that I have not been completely honest with my partner while dating and being engaged. When I came out with some things it is very difficult to tell all. Since time has gone since I have done these things, it is easier to lie because I have buried this deep and did not repeat this situation as I felt guilty and did not want to do it again. I cheated and to cover up my cheating I withheld certain parts either to spare feelings or that I did not want to see them leave. I have since then came clean about everything but they cannot look at me the same, as they shouldn’t. We have children and I don’t want them to grow up without a mother and father together as that is what I grew up without. I would love to have gone to counseling because I feel it would be easier to talk with someone being a mediator. But my partner does not want any part of that. How can I make them see that I will not withhold ANY information again? I don’t think there is an answer but willing for criticism and/or advice.

  • CC

    CC

    September 13th, 2017 at 1:28 PM

    I’m 15 and I’m not sure if I have this disorder or not. I go through these cycles of first lying about something, usually it’s about having a boyfriend or following rules. I always want to look good in my parent’s eyes, and so I lie and lie and lie. I’m not talking to that girl you don’t like, no ma’am. I’m not dating him. I’m going to sign up for this club and that club.
    Eventually, I get caught in a lie and I feel horrible. “Why would I do that?” I think. “They would’ve been alright with me dating that boy if I had been honest about it.” I end up feeling so guilty, in fact, that sometimes I’ll self-harm and cry myself to sleep and convince myself that I’m not lovable and I don’t deserve to eat.
    Eventually, as trust builds back up with my parents, I end up lying again, usually worse than the last one. And I get caught. And I feel horrible. And I lie. And get caught. Lie, caught, guilt, lie. It doesn’t end, and I’m afraid that I can’t change. I feel genuinely guilty, too. I don’t know how to stop.
    I think that this might stem from my childhood- I was in a situation where I had to lie about my parent’s whereabouts, their fighting, their drug use. It was best to lie- otherwise, I would never see them again or my sisters. It was best to lie, and that is so ingrained in my mind. I have to stop sometime. I don’t want to live a lie.

  • Tom

    Tom

    September 13th, 2017 at 5:32 PM

    I need help with lying to purposely hurt people.

  • Tom

    Tom

    September 13th, 2017 at 5:33 PM

    How do I stop lying to purposely hurt people?

  • Lindsey

    Lindsey

    September 14th, 2017 at 7:36 AM

    My wife lies constantly. She’s lied about being pregnant (3 times since we’ve been together and at least once before). She’s lied about being sexually assaulted (multiple times by multiple people). She’s lied about things I’ve done to her (she told our roommate that I stole $4k from our joint account and refused to put gas in her car unless she had sex with me… which I would never even think of doing!). She’s lied about being stalked. She’s lied about having affairs and exes and current relationships during and before ours.

    I stay because I love her more than anything, but I just can’t keep sitting back and watch her destroy friendships, and I can’t keep running damage control. I also can’t just let her drag my name through the mud and don’t even really want to be there for her when these people inevitably figure it out and stop talking to her (or start telling other people what she says/does). I hate seeing her hurt, but I also feel like she’s getting what she deserves and needs to face the consequences of her actions.

  • KW

    KW

    October 10th, 2017 at 4:46 PM

    My advice.
    GET QUALIFIED HELP. TELL your family and friends up front about the issue. Tell them you are aware of it and working on it and don’t know why it happens. It just does. It is like liars Turret’s. Explain to them that when it happens you will try to follow up the lie with an immediate statement saying, “IT HAPPENED.”

    Remember that everyone lies, but not in the same way you do. Everyone does it to protect themselves, to not hurt other’s feelings….and the list goes on. The goal needs to be to recognize and work to REDUCE the amount of time you “LIE FOR NO EXPLAINABLE REASON!”

    I live with someone like what is (many times) described in detail above. It has not ruined our lives, it is a part of our lives. It will always be part of our lives. I didn’t discover the extent of the lies for many years into the relationship. Weekly therapy and recording lies in a Daily Lie Journal has helped. I don’t look at the Lie Journal as it is private. My spouse says it is really eye opening. Patterns are emerging. There are triggers. It is helping to identify the prime times. I am one of the main people that gets lied to. I can live with that. I don’t take it personally because it is not about me. Actually, I’m probably the safest place to lie.

    My spouse is also Bi-Polar 1. I’m not sure if the lying is part of that condition or another complete one all of its own. Doesn’t matter. I see it as a medical illness that functions like an addiction.

    I totally accept that my spouse lies. Self-awareness and working on it is all I ask. Sometimes I ask for clarity on suspect statements or ask if I’ve been lied to. We have progressed to the point, that when athe lie comes out, it is often followed by a statement of, “That was a lie and I don’t know why I said it.” Yes, it is frustrating. Yet, it does not have to be life, relationship or career ending.

    My spouse is an honest, hardworking, ethical, moral and loving parent and business owner. Yes, I said honest. And 95% of the time that is true. It is that 5%, that causes the self-destruction. I imagine that 5%, when you are the liar, can feel like 100%.

    Keep track. Try to stop getting buried in the lies by taking away their power. You don’t have to loose friends, move every few months to start over or feel horrid about yourself constantly. People will like and accept you for admitting the problem. Friends will help. You are lovable. Take responsibility for it and let people know and fess up when it happens.

    I know it’s not that easy. But it is a start. All you can do is your best. Keep working at it.

  • Cd

    Cd

    October 16th, 2017 at 6:00 PM

    I appreciate all the comments. I am the one who has a loved one who suffers from pathological lying . It has been discovered that when he was a child if he told the truth about somethings he was punished. He has aknolwdged that he has a problem . He is a people pleaser and he wasn’t to help people anyway he can. But gets himself in to trouble when he can do what he tells the people. He gets stressed and he tells himself he’s a outcast and a nobody. And once suicidal thoughts. We are looking for professionals that can help him but I have no clue where to start

  • Linda Havell

    Linda Havell

    October 21st, 2017 at 3:48 PM

    I know I have a problem but cannot stop.

  • Holly G

    Holly G

    October 27th, 2017 at 5:24 PM

    I am a teen suffering from this disorder from previous abuse which i no longer intake bu i still lie! Im pretty sure my parents hate me any self help books for this disorder?

  • Amber

    Amber

    November 2nd, 2017 at 6:26 PM

    My husband has slowly thrown away everything we have built together because he is unwilling to tell any truths or acknowledge that he is a liar. I’m quite sure I have no idea who I even married and we are coming up on our 15th anniversary. It took 10 years for me to realize that he is incapable of honesty which in turn made me realize just how hoodwinked I had allowed myself to be after happily giving up a career to be a stay-at-home mom with nothing to fall back on. I am now stuck in a place with a stranger trying to parent my son not to make character defining choices like Dad.

    What he won’t ever admit…every choice he makes is dependant upon what HE WANTS, the needs of the family come way down the line after him, what people think about him, his horses, dogs, things I am unaware of THEN family.

  • Justin C.

    Justin C.

    November 12th, 2017 at 8:30 AM

    I lye about everything from the color in the sky to who spilt the the milk in the floor I need to stop lying to my self and my wife it’s breaking us apart I’ve been lying to her for 7 years now we just got married a year ago from sep 2 2017 and she has enough of me lying she wants a separation from me and it kills me I need help to stop lying and why do I lie all the time I need help so me and my wife can grow together and we can live our fairy tale life I need to go see someone and talk it someone I don’t want to lose my wife and my self

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    November 12th, 2017 at 9:46 AM

    Dear Justin,

    If you would like to consult with a mental health professional, please feel free to return to our homepage, https://www.goodtherapy.org/, and enter your zip code into the search field to find therapists in your area.

    Once you enter your information, you’ll be directed to a list of therapists and counselors who meet your criteria. From this list you can click to view our members’ full profiles and contact the therapists themselves for more information. You are also welcome to call us for assistance finding a therapist. We are in the office Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time; our phone number is 888-563-2112 ext. 1.

    Kind regards,
    The GoodTherapy.org Team

  • Melanie

    Melanie

    November 17th, 2017 at 9:35 PM

    My brother and his ex-wife adopted her brother’s two sons. My two adopted nephews since they were five years old we noticed the constant lying, and lying for no reason they just lie to lie. I think it’s a game for them. The boys would have stuff all over their faces, and clothes, and look at you in the face and say “I didn’t do it!”, and you would say “But it is all over you,” and they WOULD STILL continue to say “I didn’t do it.” They are 45 and 41 now, and to this day they continually lie multiple times a day. The other day I was at my mother’s house, where Brandon is staying for a few weeks, and some of his clothes were on the floor. When I said something to him about picking up his stuff, because my mom is disabled, he told me it was his brother’s stuff. But the funny thing about it is, his brother has been living up North for the past 7 weeks. It’s really, really bad, it’s to the point you don’t even want to be around them anymore. Is this a genetic thing, because both of the brothers that were adopted by my brother and his wife are pathological liars. One would think at their age now that they would grow out of it. Trying to figure out what gives, is this a medical condition?

  • Cd

    Cd

    November 18th, 2017 at 10:49 AM

    For me my life has been turned upside down. The loved one lied to me about everything. He even went so far to create several phone numbers and made up email accounts. The phone numbers were used to create a cover for his. Lies. He used names of his co-workers but changed their last names. He used the company he was working for. For example he wouldn’t come home at night. And I thought he was with someone else else. Then his fake co-worker would text me to verify what he said. When actually it was him . He even lied about a little girl dying . It was horrible . Then when he needed time off from work, instead of just asking for time off he told them that his father died. His father did not die. His lies have been for selfish reasons. And sympathy. So now when I get text from him and he’s looking for sympathy he doesn’t get it from me. He pretended to be a manager of a company that I wanted to work for. Interviews everything was don’t through text. That was my mistake. I asked for a face to face interview and I was told” oh we will meet I just had a few minutes before a meeting so I figured I woukd ask a few question. I was then asked are you ready to start working for this company. Well I fell for all that. Quit job and my loved one actually picked me up to have me work with him. Then I find out I had no job at all. And no way to pay bills. I had figured out what was actually going on when I was talking to one of his actually coworkers. That he had pretended to be all these people.
    He has burnt so many bridges with people that I fear that one day he will really me in serious trouble and no one will come running . I hope he gets help

  • Raj S

    Raj S

    December 14th, 2017 at 9:20 AM

    How do I get help for my partner who lies all the time? we have been together for 10 years and I have just hit rock bottom, or so I think. my partner borrows money from people without telling me and lies about it if I find out. I am so scared that he has taken money from loan sharks and they will come assault him. He lost his job and constantly lies about getting a new job. Any time he has a interview he tells me he got the job. Sometimes he will work for a coupl eof days and then lose his job but will keep leaving the house at the same times to pretend he is still working. he cant say the truth about the simplest things. he started debtors anonymous and therapy but I was wondering if there was anything specific to help people like him. he has a lot of good in him. Also he’s had a difficult past, no family and growing up in foster care. But there has to be a way to break free of these behaviours. I feel terribly guilty thinking about separating from him since I am all he has and without me and a job he will really be on the streets.

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    December 14th, 2017 at 10:08 AM

    Hi Raj,
    While we are not mental health professionals, speaking to a therapist about your concerns regarding your partner’s lying. If you would like to find a therapist near you, we recommend searching GoodTherapy.org’s directory of mental health professionals here:
    https://www.goodtherapy.org/find-therapist.html
    You might also appreciate this blog post talking about how to help a loved one who needs therapy:
    https://www.goodtherapy.org/how-to-help.html

  • Derek S

    Derek S

    December 28th, 2017 at 4:53 AM

    Is this treatable?

  • Andy

    Andy

    January 12th, 2018 at 12:17 PM

    I had recently gotten into a drug problem… I’ve lately done nothing but lie and hurt everyone around me… I got innocent people in trouble and am trying to bring down some kids I believe are bad… I only recently realized I might have an issue with lying… looking back on my family i have had this issue with lying… but in the past few years it has gotten worse and worse… I am about to go to court… I think I’m gonna reveal everything and get treatment… I need the help… so I really do like how this form just told my entire life story in the best words… I’m gonna start seeking the help… thank you goodtherapy.org

  • YohantheLIAR

    YohantheLIAR

    January 20th, 2018 at 3:39 PM

    I am a liar and I need help

  • Marie flippin

    Marie flippin

    January 26th, 2018 at 10:07 AM

    I have a 19 yr old daughter that lied about a great friend to us. She fabercated a story that he had strong feelings for me and wanted to be my boyfriend. I started getting texts from him supposely and he told me how he felt about me and i believed it. I got pics of him abd things he’d say lonely we knew and it went so far that i thought he had asked me to marry him and we went to where he worked and she went in came out with a ring in a bag that earrings go in with message wrote on front saying i love you will u marry me and then he called said sorry he couldn’t come out and give it to me but wanted to know what the answer was and i crying said yes and her sitting knowingly it wasn’t even from him or anything letting think it was. Letting me tell my family and friends i was marrying him abd it wasnt even true. Knowningly he was still engaged to his girlfriend letting me think they were not together anymore but then i told a lie about the way he puposed to me and that was wrong and got busted from the man and my family member and i wanted it to be true cause i really liked this man but still didn’t make it right to lie. But when i comfronted my daughter she will not admit it plays like it was this man doing it they face timed together sitting things up like vacations for us the wedding date specical Christmas together us moving in with him and helping him run his business etc. To where i thought i was texting his daughter and at Christmas i gave them presents where i put a heart felt letter in his telling him that i loved him and one in his daughters saying i loved her all just make me look like a crazy woman now that’s how he sees me crazy and sick. She let this go on for three months before the mans girlfriend caught on and confronted me on facebook and that’s when i figured out my own daughter done all this to me and our frinend and his girlfriend. I have never been so angry disgusted humiliated ashamed heartbroken in my life that my own daughter would do this to her own mother and other peoples lives and destory them like this and destory my trust in her and our friends trust in us. Please tell what to do on figuring this our.

  • Jdee3

    Jdee3

    February 1st, 2018 at 8:35 PM

    I completely understand! I dated a sociopath for two years and also have an online creep that continues to lie, stalk and harass me. My heart goes out to ppl in these situations as these severely messed up individuals belong in long term mental facilities. Hang in there and keep moving forward good ppl:)

  • Christian B

    Christian B

    February 3rd, 2018 at 10:19 PM

    The best friend I ever had was the light of my life and the only person who ever made me feel truly happy. I’ve wondered if I might ever see her on here. Her lies destroyed my life and I’m still trying to recover two years later. I’m not the only one she’s done things like this to, but certainly the worst. I can’t let go of my love for her because it was so unconditional, like an adopted daughter, and I swore I’d never abandon her, but she abandoned me and then came back, but then I sort of left her, not knowing how to handle things and everything got so severely and overwhelmingly worse after that. There’s a whole community that believes I’m something I’m not, and especially because of my own history, I can’t live being associated this way and I just want to die. I’m afraid if she doesn’t get the help she needs, she’s going to live her life like this, and soon I’m just going to fall by the wayside, losing forever the person I care more about than any other. Losing myself in the process. I still cry every single day. I can’t move on.

  • Kathleen

    Kathleen

    February 5th, 2018 at 11:12 AM

    For several years I have ignored the fact that my 23 yr old son is a pathological liar. It is a very very hard thing to say. But recently his lies for three years have all connected and it became apparent as I found out that he had lied and committed fraud with relatives who have been so supportive financially and emotionally. The lies all came tumbling out recently and as I dig deeper it is scary. He wont say the words as lie and steal, he will only say mistaken communications or that he found instead of stole. I don’t see any connection he has made to how his actions has had terrible fallout for all of those around him who love him. I feel that I have to make him confront what he has done and let hin know that he has to change, it wont be easy, and he needs help before our relationship can continue. I feel like I have to say to him it has to stop. If it doesn’t our relationship will not be the same. The lies over the past years has been over nothing to lies about his job, living abroad, receiving loans from relatives in which what happened is he forged a check. It didn’t even make any logic or sense. Does anyone have any ideas on how to speak with him? Thank you, Kathleen

  • Pugsley0134

    Pugsley0134

    February 7th, 2018 at 7:37 PM

    I don’t realize I lie until I get caught.

  • apache

    apache

    April 24th, 2018 at 11:37 PM

    That’s awesome. Changes the level of trust for me. I’m gonna try it but I won’t get caught ;)

  • sphe

    sphe

    February 19th, 2018 at 5:02 AM

    I also have a similar problem, I lie so much about stuff that I don’t really need to lie about, and its not because I want to be liked by others. I honestly don’t know why I do it and when it started, but looking back to my childhood I never used to lie about anything to anyone, I do not know when everything changed, I hate it, I have tried several times to train myself to stop but I cannot, It’s destroying my relationship and it makes me so sad, at times I do not even like looking at myself in the mirror.

  • S.J

    S.J

    March 17th, 2018 at 4:50 AM

    I have lied about something terrible since I was 17. I am almost 50. I have thought and though about it and have no idea why I did it. Every time I told the lie I felt terrible and frightened but still did so. The lie I told myself and others is deeply disgusting and shameful and I am horrified I did it. I have, at times, managed to convince myself it is true but it isn’t. I can’t work out what I gained from doing it. All it did was utterly destroy my life and I deserve that.
    I am now very ill and it is destroying me. I am writing letters to the people I have told the lie to confessing what I have done. I hope I am brave enough to send them.

  • Chelse

    Chelse

    March 21st, 2018 at 11:59 PM

    I have this same problem I lie about small stuff and big stuff. I’ve been on medicine and the medicine made me feel numb. I got pregnant and had to go off it cold turkey cause I didn’t want to hurt my baby. I destroyed my relationship with my boyfriend and the father of my child. And it’s not fair to him he didn’t do anything to deserve this. Lucky to god in my 28 years he’s the only person who ever really told me I had a problem and is sees the good in me and worship the ground I walk on. (I’m not lying I swear) but I lie to him about stuff I don’t even need to lie about. I was reading these amazing articles and it helped me and inspired me to be brave and amitte I have a problem. The thing is I lie to him cause I’m scared and I’m selfish. He the kind of man that tells you like it is to everyone and myself and it hurts my feelings at times. But at the same time I’ve never had that in my life. My mom also a liar a huge one where she won’t feel guilty or have a heart for no one and doesn’t care who she hurts. Did it so I think I’m not sure I picked up on her bad habit. But I don’t call the police on people and say someone hit me when they didn’t. Growing up was hell from the beginning my parents were married my mom cheated on my dad then came John the saten of all Staten. He abuses my sister and my mom and I. She stayed with him for a long time until my grandmother stayed one week with us and gave my mom her check book and told us to get out. She was the lucky one. My mom never stood us for us even when her boyfriend blacked my eye by smaking my head into a countertop in the bathroom. Which I had to lie about going to school with bruised eye. I was always so worried as a kid. The one time I told my teacher my dad had to come and pick me up from school and she was telling my dad how I don’t concentrate in school. I broke down I really did I told her how John graped me by my neck and tried to choke me in front of my mom. And she seemed worried at the time but still staye. My next nightmare came when cps came to the house and they asked me questions what happened. My mom told me that if told them what happened they would take us away before they got there she new there we’re coming cause my dad told her what was going on. and she cried and made me feel bad. So i lied for her. Then I found myself living a lies. I made up this happy home life to tell to people and family. Cause I would get beat if I told the truth and I would just get plain beat. Well I got to high school and had a eating disorder from being called fat my whole life. And I lied about that so I wouldn’t be teased. I finally left my moms house when I was sixteen to live with my loving dads family. And they asked me what happened and I lied to them about te horrible details. I told them things that wouldn’t keep my grandma up all night worrying but she found out by my sister. Who tells it like how it is. I got my life together worked went to school and I started a new school so I created this new life and more lies. I couldn’t just tell my friends hey I had to leave my mentally ill mother who was trying to move in with a new guy who just got out of prison for killing someone. ( self defense). She says but I got a bad vibe off him he drank a lot. And would say horrible things to me. And her ex boyfriend almost beat us to death and had some problems with his temper. So I stated a new lie chapter. And I really honestly to god don’t want to live if I live like this. This is my fault I live like this I’m miserable. I never took in the drug or drinking problem but I took on lying as a addition and that’s the worst kind. I’m slowly trying to get out of this rut I pray a lot I don’t know if the big guy can hear me up there and my grandma but I like to this so. But your not alone and all the people on here that amited it I salute you cause this was hard for me to write this. For my high proud self but inside I’m broken as well. And I know that god will help me through this and I want my little girl to be proud of her mama and I would love to have my boyfriend in my life forever and you guys helped me so thank you. I can’t destroy my family over something this crazy that I done to myself and Half to tell my daughter why her dad and I can’t be together. Well because I hurt him and lied to him. That’s why you don’t have two parents that live together.

  • Larry C M.

    Larry C M.

    April 6th, 2018 at 4:35 AM

    Help me!

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    April 6th, 2018 at 6:24 AM

    Dear Larry,

    If you would like to consult with a mental health professional, please feel free to return to our homepage, http://www.goodtherapy.org/, and enter your zip code into the search field to find therapists in your area.

    Once you enter your information, you’ll be directed to a list of therapists and counselors who meet your criteria. From this list you can click to view our members’ full profiles and contact the therapists themselves for more information. You are also welcome to call us for assistance finding a therapist. We are in the office Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time; our phone number is 888-563-2112 ext. 1.

    Kind regards,
    The GoodTherapy.org Team

  • thindi

    thindi

    April 30th, 2018 at 2:37 PM

    I feel for all of you who are struggling. You CAN get better. Therapy DOES help. I do not have this problem but I have a ton of others and am very grateful for the therapy I have gotten. It gave me a new lease on life. Try to think of yourself as a person with a lying problem.. not a liar.. You deserve help and ways to deal with your issues. It is hard I know to go to therapy and be honest but it is worth it. As one book says “you shall know the truth and the truth will set you free but first it will make you miserable.

  • Jorge

    Jorge

    May 7th, 2018 at 3:15 PM

    I dont…well cant really remember the last time I told the truth I’m tired of the lying I do it for a bunch of reasons sometimes for acceptance, but most of the time it’s to get people off of my back and to just leave me alone but I’m tired if being alone I want to be abke to make friends for who I am its gotten so bad that my own family doesnt believe a word I say I avoid them so much because I feel like everything that will come out of my mouth will be a lie to them I just wish i had someone to talk to and help me

  • The GoodTherapy.org Team

    The GoodTherapy.org Team

    May 7th, 2018 at 3:25 PM

    Thank you for your comment, Jorge. If you would like to consult with a mental health professional, please feel free to return to our homepage, http://www.goodtherapy.org/, and enter your zip code into the search field to find therapists in your area. If you’re looking for a counselor that practices a specific type of therapy, or who deals with specific concerns, you can make an advanced search by clicking here: http://www.goodtherapy.org/advanced-search.html

    Once you enter your information, you’ll be directed to a list of therapists and counselors who meet your criteria. From this list you can click to view our members’ full profiles and contact the therapists themselves for more information. Alternatively, you are welcome to call us for assistance finding a therapist. We are in the office Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pacific Time; our phone number is 888-563-2112 ext. 1.

    If you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency, in danger of hurting yourself or others, feeling suicidal, overwhelmed, or in crisis, it’s very important that you get immediate help! Information about what to do in a crisis is available here: http://www.goodtherapy.org/in-crisis.html

  • Summers

    Summers

    May 8th, 2018 at 6:52 AM

    I lie all the time I can’t help it

  • Kent D.

    Kent D.

    May 14th, 2018 at 9:12 PM

    My mother in law is a pathological liar. She claims to be allergic to a number of things when her own doctor told me she has no allergies whatsoever. She claims she was in a Nazi concentration camp toward the end of World War II which I don’t believe to be true as she wasn’t Jewish and her parents did not fit the profile or narrative of those who were imprisoned. She claims she took ballet lessons for years as a child even though she was a refugee raised by a single mother whose husband left her for drink. She had to work 3 jobs to pay for a room in a boarding house so I find it hard to believe there would be any disposable income leftover for dance lessons.
    I don’t confront her because obviously she has a mental illness. She lies to make herself feel more interesting or to feel special and/or to get attention. I suspect she was a very lonely and sad child growing up. Her father was a drunken bum, her mother was busy working and fobbed her off to any European friend who could look after her. I just reckon she had an unhappy childhood devoid of love and attention. So, she lies to make an ordinary sad life appear more interesting and triumphant. Maybe one day I’ll confront her about it, but I probably won’t.

  • Brady

    Brady

    May 16th, 2018 at 7:08 AM

    Dating a chronic liar!!!!!!

  • Kathy

    Kathy

    May 16th, 2018 at 10:03 AM

    I dated a chronic liar, he was Bipolar. He went out digging looking for something to find against me and when he couldn’t find anything to use against me, he started making up stuff…these people are toxic and you need to get rid of them. They will break your heart leave you high and dry, just like my ex did me . Just stay away from people like this, they are toxic and are nothing but trouble .

  • Rach

    Rach

    July 12th, 2018 at 9:48 PM

    My ex bf told me he had stage 4 Cancer, He won a 2 million dollar settlement and wanted to marry me. Meanwhile he found some hideous Sugar Mommy who was the one buying all his s***, I think “S$$$e (not her real name) bought me my lovely Christmas presents. “Hey thanks” He was a liar and cheater.

  • Gillian

    Gillian

    July 13th, 2018 at 9:29 AM

    I have just recently broken up with my partner, who was a pathological liar. We were childhood sweethearts and he was a liar back then. However, he was in an abusive relationship (unless that was a lie, not sure) and throughout our relationship (lasted 6 years) he has accused me of having affairs with men I have never even met. Often having sex with multiple men at one time. Having sex in every room in his father’s large house. Having group sex in a van outside my mother’s house. Bringing my deceased father into the lie by saying that my father warned him that I liked big men and that if he was wasn’t well endowed he should leave. My father didn’t talk about sex if a sex scene came on the TV he would walk out of the room (my father was raped at the age of 15 in The Royal Navy). I have since found out that my partner had been abused at the age of 8 by a friend of the family who was only about 15 himself and that his sister used to take him to his abuser. In his marriage, prior to meeting me again after 20 years, he was sexually abused by his sister-in-law and apparently his wife had slept with half the village. I have a high moral compass, I hate lies and I do not have affairs or approve of them. His stories are fantasies and they keep changing every time he tells them. They hurt so much and have seriously affected my self esteem and confidence. When we went out I had to have my eyes to the ground at all times so as not to engage anybody, especially a man. It was totally demoralising and has done untold damage to my mental health. He would get aggressive and angry a lot of the time. It would get out of control when he was stressed the lies just come flying all hurtful and always sexually explicit with no evidence to back up anything he said. I only recently had the courage to get out of the relationship. I managed to get him to talk to the police about the abuse, which has partially made things worse. I have convinced him to talk to a Dr about the abuse. I have a degree in Psychology and I have told him that I believe he is a psychopathic liar brought on by his abuse as child and then made worse by his abuse at his sister-in-laws hands but of course he doesn’t believe me.

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