Here at Glitter, Bliss, and Perfect Chaos we like to push the edge of the envelope when it comes to relationships and love. Last week we talked about manipulating your man. Here’s the big question for today. Is it okay to lie to your love? Do you want to be lied to?
Now before y’all get bent out of shape and say, You should never lie, hear me out. We’re not talking cheating on someone, major life changing lies. We’re talking everyday little white lie kinds of lies. I’ll be honest with you, I like to be lied to about some things. There are a lot of times I just can’t handle the truth. There have been many times over the years when I’ve asked my husband a question, and I’ve said, Just tell me what I want to hear.
Yes, tell me what I want to hear. In other words, lie to me. This was a difficult concept for my husband to grasp early in our marriage. He sees the world in black and white, right and wrong, good and bad. A lie is a lie. I tend to see shades of grey. I don’t lie on purpose, but I do believe that the truth can be packed in different ways.
For example, when I was pregnant with my son, I gained 77 pounds, almost 10 pounds a week in my last trimester. I had to wear my husband’s size 13 sandals to the hospital because I couldn’t get my normally 7 1/2 narrow foot into anything. My feet literally looked like square blocks, and they were probably the best looking thing on me. We’d get ready to go out to dinner, and I’d say, How do I look? Trust me, I didn’t want to hear what he was really thinking. (Which was that I looked a bit like a Weeble, and he wanted to push me to see if I’d wobble or fall down.) I wanted to hear, You look beautiful, baby, and that’s what he told me.
When I ask if these jeans make my butt look big, and I’m already completely dressed and ready to go out, I don’t want to hear the truth. I want to hear that I look amazing. And he knows that if he doesn’t say the right thing, I’ll be back in my closet for another 20 minutes trying on more clothes. So he’s learned. And for some reason, I find this really romantic. I love that he knows when I want him to lie to me. I love that he knows that there are times I just need to hear something to make me feel good, even if it isn’t exactly the truth.
And I lie for him as well. For example, he really doesn’t want to know what things cost. So sometimes I do creative rounding. He hasn’t shopped for himself since the eighties. He doesn’t have a clue, well, except for wine, scotch, cigars, and gas. Many times I’ll come home with something, and he’ll say, How much was it? I look up at the sky trying to find the answer there. He says, Never mind, I don’t want to know.
“It’s a matter of survival,” says Ed Dunkelblau, a psychologist and director of the Institute for Emotionally Intelligent Learning in Northbrook, Ill. “If you don’t fib, you don’t live.”
In other words, sometimes lies—at least the little ones—can help our relationships, even help us to survive.
My son has figured this out already. If he does something wrong, instead of arguing with me that it was not wrong, like my daughter does, he tells me what I want to hear. He says, Sorry, my beloved mother, I won’t do it again. Then he kisses me on the nose and proceeds to do whatever he wants. If he gets caught at it, he makes me laugh and forget I was mad at him in the first place. He tells me what I want to hear.
H.L. Mencken said, “The truth that survives is simply the lie that is pleasantest to believe.”
Then I started thinking about all the other lies people have told me. Things I wanted or probably needed to hear.
From my friends: He wasn’t good enough for you.
From Disney: Find your prince and you’ll live happily ever after.
From the restaurant hostess: Your wait should be about five minutes.
And even, the lies I tell myself: If I eat it standing up, the calories don’t count. Chocolate is good for you. It’s such a good deal, you have to buy it.
So what do you think? Do you want people to ALWAYS be honest with you? Or are you okay with people telling you what you want to hear? Or are you like me and sometimes prefer it? And the even bigger question, are you always honest with yourself?