So yeah, I’m a bit of a compulsive liar. Some of the stuff I lie about, I have reasons to lie about, but most of it either comes with a flimsy excuse or has absolutely no reason at all. It’s as if I’m so used to lying that it has become a habit. This is actually a huge problem, though, even bigger than it seems, because I’m a really good liar.
I can look people square in the eye and not just evade the truth, but tell them the complete opposite. I can maintain the exact right amount of eye contact, keep myself controlled between fidgety and rigid, speak only with natural hesitation, and use so much conviction in my voice that people think Either she’s a cold, manipulative predator or she’s telling me the truth. And they’ll believe me.
I don’t want to say that I’ve never been caught in a lie, but nothing really jumps out at me, so if I have, it’s either trivial or I managed to talk my way out of it in the end. Mind you, this is not me bragging at all. I’m disgusted by this, and I hate myself for treating the people close to me so horribly. I betray their trust over and over again, and they have no idea. Granted, the topics I lie about don’t make the slightest bit of a difference to them and usually only protect my image in my own eyes, but lying over and over to people betrays their trust, and it prevents me from making strong, meaningful connections to them emotionally. As long as there are lies in a relationship, it can’t grow and develop into something strong, healthy, and lasting.
The reason I’m so good at lying is because I believe it. I lie to myself more than anyone else. This is especially damaging to my own psyche and well-being. Fyodor Dostoyevsky writes the following quote in The Brothers Karamazou.
- “Above all, don’t lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.”
I’m worried about this happening to me. I already feel cold and distant to reality. Perhaps it is because so much of my mind’s reality is fiction, but I don’t feel a part of this world. If I keep lying as I am now, this schism between reality and my mind will only worsen, and I’ll be no more than a misplaced crumple of garbage drifting through the streets of life, waiting to die.
Losing the people in your life that you care about is an incredible tragedy, but losing yourself is even worse.
I’m going to make a commitment to myself to stop lying to myself before it worsens. With that, I have to stop lying to other people. I need to untangle myself from my safety net and allow myself to become exposed and vulnerable to other people. We cannot have deep emotional connections with other people without exposing our souls to them, and we cannot wholly live our lives without allowing ourselves to become vulnerable. Vulnerability enables us to feel, and feeling is the essence of living.