Tag Archives: lying to yourself

Is Honesty Always The Best Policy?

I have always believed honesty is the best policy.  No matter what, when it comes right down to it, if you don’t know what to do; go with honesty and let the pieces fall where they may. Lying only perpetuates more lying and almost invariably it will back fire in your face. Lying about other people is a real sore spot with me, mainly because I have been the victim of a smear campaign and dealt with people who chose to believe the lies and refuse to even entertain the idea that they are believing lies. I have had to end friendship’s with people who believed the lies even though they professed to not be taking sides. Sometimes there is no choice, people have to choose sides because if they don’t they are condoning or agreeing with the lies or behavior. 

I really hate dealing with conflict and have always preferred to keep the peace at all cost but I have found since the narcissist I have anxiety attacks at the first sign of dishonesty or if I hear slander or gossip. 

I suppose that’s because while with my ex the honesty line got blurred from black and white to a solid grey and eventually the narcissistic fog obliterated it from sight all together.

My ex was forever being accused of stealing and every job he ever had was lost due to being “falsely” accused of stealing. He lied about cheating on me, about how much money he made, he lied about having 6 months to live for God sake!

He lied when he didn’t even have to lie. It got to the point I just automatically assumed he was lying and was pleasantly surprised when he wasn’t. 

In the beginning I would bring him up on it if I caught him lying. (*hint. If you have to teach a full grown man about the virtues of honesty. Run!!) 

I thought the lying was a rare thing and due to low self confidence or out of fear of losing me. Haha. Rather ironic, I believed he lied about inconsequencial things because he had lied to me about how all the women in his life had screwed him over and left him. I was going to show him what real love was all about. Gawd! Thinking back I was SO naive!

 As time went on I realized his lies weren’t always so innocent and I would try to tell him it was wrong to lie. (If you find yourself trying to teach a grown man how to be a responsible adult, run!)  

I struggled with his lies; I was embarrassed by them, it went against my values and it bothered me.  

Cognitive dissonance had me telling myself that his actions weren’t a reflection on me. I was not responsible for his actions as long as I remained honest. It was not my position to act as judge and jury. 

But it doesn’t work that way. If you live with a liar you are assumed to also be a liar. If you are an honest person and you know your significant other is scamming someone is it your responsibility to warn them? 

Does it depend on the severity of the crime? If you are the wife of a man who sexually abuses under-age girls and you know. As long as you don’t participate in it are you responsible for ensuring he doesn’t abuse any more girls? Should you be punished for turning a blind eye?

As we are seeing now with various celebrities bring accused of molesting women; are the people who knew about it and didn’t say anything also guilty?

As much as I told myself his actions weren’t a reflection on me, I noticed I had become very cautious about who I told he was my boyfriend. I started wanting to warn people, I was not proud to be his girlfriend.   

After losing a 3rd job for being falsely accused of stealing, I found myself explaining to him that when you take things that don’t belong to you people tend to think you are stealing. People are funny that way. (*hint. If anyone is over the age of 3 and doesn’t know this. Run!!)

I had to ask myself why I was with someone I was ashamed to admit I was with? But by that time I was in so deep I didn’t see a way out. He had sabotaged my truck to the point it was only running maybe a 1/3 of the time. The repairs kept me broke, I was fighting a losing battle. 

He started to not come home at night and I didn’t even lose sleep. I knew to get angry was useless. I had gotten really good at suppressing my emotions. If I cried I heard, “That’s all you ever do is cry”. If I got angry I heard, “This is exactly why I don’t come home. You’re always angry!” If I was suspicious I was called jealous and paranoid. I started keeping track of every time I cried or got angry on a calendar. 

But I never left. So I just prayed he would tell me a good enough lie that I could lie to myself. I knew he was lying, that wasn’t the point; I didn’t believe anything he said anyway. But as long as he was lying I didn’t have to face reality. As long as he was lying he still “cared” and I still had a glimmer of hope that maybe he wasn’t lying this time and he really did love me. 

All victims of a narcissist live on hope and that is the hardest thing to lose. The victim knows he abuses her and treats her like shit, she knows he is cheating, she knows he is lying but she has hope. Hope is a big thing, without hope it’s hard to find a reason to go on. 

* NOTE * He is not the only one playing mind games, the worst ones are the games we play on ourselves!

I kept hearing this voice in my head saying, “How can you be with someone you are ashamed of and don’t respect?

After I left him I felt hopeless and of course he took every opportunity to make me feel hopeless. I felt totally broken and I didn’t have a clue how to put me back together, I could not ever get my innocence back. I have compared it to feeling like a puzzle someone dumped on the floor. But pieces were missing and pieces from another puzzle were mixed in. I was overwhelmed to the point of immobility. 

I knew in order to be happy I had to live according to my moral standards and if I was living with someone who was consistently dishonest I wasn’t living true to my core self.

How was I going to put myself back together and ever find my core self, who was I? 

I started the process the same way I would start putting a puzzle together; one piece at a time.

I looked at every horrible thing he told me I was. I owned what was true about me and I threw out what wasn’t. The things that were true but I didn’t like; I vowed to change.

This analysis of myself took me back to when I was a child and things I was told about myself when I was growing up. I had always been told I was “too sensitive”, I was a “flake”, I was never good enough, skinny enough, out going enough. Without even realizing it I had spent most of my life feeling like an impostor who could be exposed at any minute because I was trying to be what other people told me I should be.

When you are not living true to your core self it is impossible to have inner peace and it is very easy for a narcissist to make you feel “less than”.

Somehow I knew that if I could figure out who I was at the core and liked me that was going to be 1/2 the battle of protecting myself from another narcissist.

It has gotten easier over time, (7 years) to not succumb to the pressure from my ego. Our ego gets us in big trouble you know. My mother has a technique that my ex used also. They want you to do something or agree with them that someone else is wrong so they say something like, “You would never do something like that.” Or “You always help me, not like so and so.” My ex would say something like, “you are nothing like my ex’s, I can talk to you. You are calm and rational. All my ex’s were psycho bitches.”  It makes you better, favorable.  

* Later when he was calling ME a psycho bitch I said.

” I would be concerned if I was you.”

He grinned and snorted, “and why is that?”

Me: “Well, all your exs were psycho bitches and now you are calling me a psycho bitch.”

Him: “Yeah. So.”

Me: “Well. I’ve been thinking. Either you are attracted to psycho bitches, or you turn women into psycho bitches. Either way; you have a real problem.”

It is human nature to want to compare favorably to others, to be the “best” and it’s a very subtle way of getting someone to comply.

I have had a dilemma lately where someone I know has been lying a lot about other people and being vengeful to make herself look better. Privately I have brought her up on it. I have been trying to not play into their drama and pity party stating outright I refused to get pulled into the dysfunction. I thought I had it under control, but then they lied before I had a chance to run interference and I exposed them. 

They went on a tearful campaign proclaiming their innocence and I was made to look like the bad guy and now everyone is angry with me.

With a relationship with a narcissist I always advise going no contact but sometimes that is not possible or not easy, say; with a parent or sibling. 

I have had people come into the blog asking what they can do about the sibling who constantly makes trouble and lie’s about them or a parent that causes drama but always comes away smelling like a rose. I never know what to say and these recent events reminded me what a helpless feeling it is to deal with these toxic people. 

They won’t kill you and are not as blatant as most narcissists but damaging none the less. If it is a family member, to go no contact means you lose your whole family. You sit at home for Christmas, you are the one who is made to feel the pariah. 

It’s not so easy to live true to your core self and set boundaries when you face losing your whole family.

Have you ever dealt with a toxic family member? How did you handle it? Did you turn a blind eye or speak out? What was the outcome? 

Cognitive Dissonance and How It Helps The Victim Of Abuse Stay

Wikipedia describes cognitive dissonance like this:

Cognitive dissonance

In the field of psychology, cognitive dissonance is the mental discomfort(psychological stress) experienced by a person who simultaneously holds two or more contradictory beliefsideas, or values. The occurrence of cognitive dissonance is a consequence of a person’s performing an action that contradicts personal beliefs, ideals, and values; and also occurs when confronted with new information that contradicts said beliefs, ideals, and values.[1][2]

I always had pretty black and white views on what was right and wrong, legal and illegal, fair and unjust and I had no problem speaking my mind when I thought someone was wrong. I never lied, didn’t tolerate lying from anyone else and prided myself on being a very honest upstanding citizen. 

The first time I remember questioning my ex’s honesty was when he did a business deal. A neighbor had a motorcycle that had been in a flood, he was afraid to start it because it had been submerged. He offered it to my ex for $400. My ex is an amazing mechanic and can get anything working but he didn’t have $400 at the time and had just lost his job.

The deal was the bike would stay where it was until my ex finished paying for it. 

The next day my ex was going through the Buy and Sell; he was always wheeling and dealing and could do quite well at it sometimes. I heard him on the phone saying he owned a motorcycle he was willing to trade for a Mercedes. He was saying, “sure it was running, I just gotten home from riding it”. 

I didn’t think it was right to lie, he didn’t know for sure he could even get it running and besides; he hadn’t bought it yet!

Next thing I know he’s got the motorcycle in his shop and he has it running! Apparently he talked the owner into letting him take it home to work on, but he wouldn’t get the registration until it was paid for.

That same day I find him loading the bike onto his flat deck and he’s heading out to trade it for the Mercedes.  I argued that he couldn’t sell something that didn’t belong to him. I was told to mind my own business; that I had no idea how to wheel and deal. I had to admit he was probably right, I was not a wheeler dealer.

He traded the motorcycle for the car but the owner of the car wouldn’t hand over the registration until he got the reggy for the bike. Now what was my ex going to do??!! 

When we got home the owner of the bike came over spitting mad at my ex. The neighbours had told him his bike left in my ex’s flat deck. Where was his bike??? The whole neighbourhood was up in arms. 

But my ex didn’t miss a beat. He took the wheels off the Mercedes and sold them for $600, took four hundred over to the guy who owned the motorcycle, got the registration, called the owner of the Mercedes and delivered the motorcycle reggie. Everyone was happy. Except me. It was wrong, wasn’t it? He sold something that didn’t belong to him but in the end everyone was happy.

I decided to mind my own business when it came to his business dealings. I told myself that how he did business was no reflection on my standards. 

But he was always being accused of stealing, got fired from every job he had for stealing and people were NOT happy. It got harder and harder to ignore how he did business and was I not just as guilty for staying with a man who stole from people? How could I respect someone who operated opposite to my values.

Then there was the infidelity. But was it infidelity? Was a personal ad actually cheating?  I was sure he wasn’t meeting any women, we were together almost 24/7 and he wasn’t likely to hook up with a Russian Bride. I told myself he was just checking to see if he could still attract women if he wanted to.

Him staying up all night looking at porn and joining dating sites wold have ordinarily been enough for me to walk. But he kept insisting he loved me. I would lay it all out. It’s OK to look at porn, hey, it’s OK to date lots of different women and there are women out there that would be OK with it but I expect fidelity. He would call me paranoid storm, out of the house and I would cry all day. Then he would call, use his “soft” voice, call me Baby and ask how I was. He’d ask if I’d eaten and take me out for dinner. We would be like we were in the beginning. Him staring into my eyes, our hands brushing against each other’s.  Him pulling me close and whispering I love you. Him knowing exactly what to do to drive me insane and then the fantastic sex!!

The next day I would be giddy with love. Certain that he had thought about what I had said and decided he would be faithful. 

After awhile of course I would discover more ads, and eventually he did physically cheat. By that time I was so far into denial I couldn’t face the truth. We had split so many times it had become “just the way we are”. We had such a deep connection and love that neither one of us could deny, we would always end up back together. 

My ex did some really alarming things that in retrospect I should have seen as threats to my safety but I had been denying my gut instincts and basic boundaries for so long I couldn’t recognize the obvious signs my life was in danger.

If his sister had not come to live with us I doubt I ever would have left on my own; my thought processes had become so unhealthy. 

I hear it on the blog all the time; a victim thinks she has control of the situation, the kids aren’t affected, she is “on to him” or the woman he’s screwing around on is a stupid bitch for not believing her when she called the new woman and told her all about him. 

The victim knows that if they accept the truth or stand by their boundaries they would have to leave the narcissist. They will have to face the fact that their fairytale romance was a lie. The love of their life is a fake. It is often times easier to lie to yourself than face the truth. 

The narcissist knows that, that is why he creates the most romantic, movie worthy romance, you are perfect, he is your knight in shining armor rescuing you from all the ugliness of the world, the boredom of marriage, the drudgery of motherhood, whatever it is that is pulling you down. He makes you feel alive, beautiful, safe, exciting, loved just the way you are. This is what meeting your soul mate feels like. This is love, being in his arms becomes like oxygen to the victim so she must somehow rationalize the facts to match her fantasy. 

It becomes so ingrained by her in her own mind that it is very difficult for her to separate the truth from fantasy when she finally leaves the narcissist.

She will go back time after time refusing to fully accept the truth because she has cognitive dissonance and isn’t seeing things with clear eye glasses. It takes months away from the narcissist and the fog that follows them before the victim can think clearly and rationally.

Oh The Lies We Tell Ourselves

I can tell from reading recent comments that there are some new members of the blog who are still lying to themselves. They  may be putting on a strong front to everyone on the blog and to people who know them; saying they have been no contact for how ever many weeks, even though it is killing them they will NOT let the N treat them with disrespect any longer.

Maybe they are meeting the N for some reason and plan on being strong or perhaps they have come up with some excuse to need the narcissist for some problem that only the narcissist can help with. They are telling everyone who will listen that this time you mean it, you will not be going back, he went too far this time.

But if they are honest, there is this tiny part (or large part of them) that is secretly hoping and praying that the narcissist somehow begs enough or lies good enough that they can go back without everyone telling them they are being stupid. You see if he lies good enough, then they can lie to themselves and if it turns out that he is lying once again, the victim is off the hook, it can’t be their fault they got hurt again if he lied to them! right?! I mean how can it be their fault if he lied and they believed him? He is such a convincing liar after all.

It can be the victim’s fault for getting hurt again because you know the truth now, you know he is a pathological liar who can convince and Eskimo they need a freezer. What is that saying, “Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.” How about fool me 27 times over the course of 10 years or more? who’s fault is it then?

What makes me so smart, how do I know what you are feeling and thinking? that is awfully arrogant of me! I know because I was you, I forgave and believed and went back so many times I was a joke among friends and I remember praying he would tell me a good enough lie I could lie to myself. I didn’t know about narcissist at the time, but I knew he was  lying, abusive, cheating asshole. Did I really need to know he was a narcissist?

I remember coming on the site a year after leaving James and crying, “Why does he keep hurting me?!!” and a couple of ladies, (because I only had a couple of followers at that point) Tic Tok and Coach, said, “Because you let him.” I was offended. How could they know, I didn’t ask him to hurt me, he lied!! They both told me to run and never look back that I was playing with fire and my life was in danger. Eventually they both told me their stories. They had both been in abusive relationships and they both ended up in a life and death situation with their abuser because they kept contact, they kept hoping and kept believing the lies and ignoring the danger they were in. One of them ended up fighting for her life because her ex asked her to go for a drive with him and he pulled a gun.  The victims who are continuing contact are playing Russian Roulette with the devil. These guys are NOT normal, they have no remorse, no conscience, no guilt, they are toying with you and when they tire of you or you push them into a corner they will turn on you.

Here is a link to a post I did in 2012

I was still talking to him and he was still hurting me and it was a year and a half after we split.

What you don’t realize right now, (because you are still talking to the N and still fresh out of the relationship); is how twisted your thinking has become, how dysfunctional the relationship really is and you won’t until you cut him from your life. Believe me, you feel you love him this much because you haven’t broken away from him. Once you get some distance for a good period of time, not a week or two, I am talking months; you will start to see things clearly and see exactly how sick he is and how sick you both had become. You will see how you assigned him emotions you thought he should be feeling instead of taking him at face value.

Yes, it is good to educate yourself about narcissists so you know what you are dealing with but you must stop trying to figure out why he does what he does, what he means when he does this or says that, why he called, why he doesn’t call, if he is happy with the new woman, why he won’t leave you alone, because the answer is………. he is a narcissist and they don’t make sense! then you have to ask yourself why even though you know he is abusive and a cheater and a liar, why you keep going back. You HAVE to break the invisible ties he has on you and trust that once you are away from him long enough you will see reality differently.