There are subtle signs and clear signs that you are dating a liar – or compulsive liar. Sometimes the signs are readily noticeable when you’re not necessarily looking for them, but most don’t think anything of them until it’s too late. And if these signs go unresolved, you could be headed down a dark path in your relationship.
I dealt with the compulsive liar in my dating years. And unfortunately, it destroyed my faith in a loyal, trustworthy relationship for a period of my young, vulnerable life. It took many years to cleanse my palette in being able to be vulnerable and accepting of someone in my love life.
Anyone who perpetually lies to their partner is also someone who lies to themselves.
But the one thing I wish I had known in all of those instances of deceit were the earlier signs that I was with someone who would never value the truth, and that I wasn’t worth honesty and integrity. Those signs may have been very subtle, or more like stepping stones – but they were signs worth addressing, or closing doors that needed to be in order for another to open.
And even though some of the signs can be subtle and harmless, I am trying to say (without being quick to judge) that if you’re already in this bumpy situation, those ‘harmless signs’ doesn’t mean they won’t get worse from there.
6 REAL AND CLEAR SIGNS YOU ARE DATING A LIAR
HE KEEPS SECRETS FROM YOU; LEAVING YOU WITH DOUBT
It doesn’t have to be something serious. Maybe he just didn’t want to tell you he was out having a beer with the guys after work, and just let you believe he was working late. And maybe because you didn’t ask, he didn’t feel he needed to tell you his whereabouts.
Where it becomes situational is when he goes out of his way to keep those secrets. Or if and when you happen to find out, he either denies, or comes clean without the incentive to stop sneaky behavior in the future.
You don’t expect him to tell you every bit of detail in his life. The fact of the matter is he should want to, and have enough respect to when it comes down to the fork of being honest or deceitful.
If your feelings matter to him, he shouldn’t want to keep anything from you that would damage the trust in the relationship.
HE GETS DEFENSIVE WHEN YOU PRY OR CATCH HIM
It takes that one time to catch him in a lie, keeping a secret, or when he’s simply in the wrong. If you approach him on a matter, question his whereabouts or intentions, and he refuses to talk about it – take that as a clear sign of either A. guilt, or B. his defense mechanism flaring (because he knows he has wronged you in some fashion). Defense can be a way of having to avoid lying to you in the first place, just to get you off his back on a particular subject – either way the behavior is a major red flag.
Or maybe you catch him red handed. If he tries to justify his actions by pointing out unrelated flaws in the relationship, or turning the tables onto you – he is attempting to manipulate you, and the situation, into deeming himself “innocent”. If he has any remorse for the fact he hurt your feelings, and that he deceived you in the first place, then he will take responsibility for his poor decisions, empathize with you and begin repairing the relationship through action.
HE GETS EASILY DEFENSIVE, PERIOD
If he has a defensive attitude in the relationship, period – whether toward issues you try to discuss within the relationship, or pertaining to particular suspicions you may have – he is simply avoiding the cause. And he knows he is the cause.
He knows at some point 1 of 3 things will happen: he will either cave, you will find out, or you will ask all the right questions in allowing him to lie even further.
The defense mechanism is the act of avoiding conversation, steering away from conflict and the ability to remove himself from any issue at hand that may act as a way in lowering his “pride”. The most commonly used phrase in the defense mechanism is the excuse that “they are being attacked“, or for lack of better words: cornered and exposed to possible wrong, or deceit.
In times of deceit, I like to call that the “white flag” approach. They are surrendering without actually saying it, or admitting to anything.
Point blank: if there are issues with trust, deceit, secrecy, or other problems that arise within the relationship, that is not the core area that needs repair. The problem is that the relationship, and the way it is treated, is immature. There are individual issues to be addressed, understood, handled and repaired, as well as a poor, underdeveloped foundation of communication for a relationship.
HE WORKS ABNORMALLY HARD TO GAIN YOUR TRUST, OR DOESN’T TRUST YOU
You’ve heard this before. In terms of abnormal behavior – well, you be the judge. The problem is that many may not read into this as being abnormal, especially if they have frequently dealt with deceit in their past relationships. This abnormality will leave a bad taste in your mouth and give you negative vibes.
It’s like the saying goes: those who cheat, lie and deceive become worrisome and distrusting of their partner. So this is very likely to be true, if you are dealing with someone who has concerns with your loyalty in the relationship.
HE AVOIDS CERTAIN TOPICS OF CONVERSATION
Relationships become complacent (that’s inevitable, unfortunately, but getting out of it is a mutual effort). Maybe you both hardly need to have a full on conversation during dinner, or you enjoy the silence of each other’s company. Whether you go your separate ways after a long day of work, or don’t talk for days except when you see one another on the weekends. Hey, if it works for you both – then why stop?
But there’s a difference between distance and complacency. If he tends to avoid conversation, or about specific subjects, there’s a clear emotional withdrawal present. Which means, he either feels entitled to his privacy, or there are things “better left unsaid”. Either way, emotional distance is a prominent issue – which can be caused by complacency in the relationship.
I dated a guy for two years (who was unemployed, yet in school, at the beginning of our relationship). He eventually got a job working late nights at a gym. I worked early morning shifts, so by the time he was off work, I was hours into sleep for work the next morning.
We didn’t live together, so it was normal for me to make conversation about work the next time we spoke. In time, it got to a point where he really didn’t like talking about it – avoided it, to be honest.
Long story short, and many suspicious signs later – came to find out he was spending time “meeting other people” while he worked, and “went out for drinks” after work with these people.
Granted, I never asked of his whereabouts when we weren’t together, but when I saw evidence and confronted him on it – I realized I was dealing with someone with the traits I discussed above.
HE IS HYPOCRITICAL
One word, ladies: hypocrite. And well, let’s add these, too, just for fun: double-standard and tit-for-tat.
Double standards can be that subtle clue that your relationship is in for trouble. In plainer terms, the double-standard basically means, “What I can do – you can’t“, or “It’s OK when I do it, but not for you“.
For example: He’s upset that you didn’t let him know what time you would be home from girls night out, but feels he doesn’t need to do the same for you when he goes out with the guys.
And keeping tabs (tit-for-tat) – well, it’s probably the most common, selfish behavior exhibited in relationships today. It’s so common that this behavior is hardly visible said and done – and it can quickly turn any relationship from good to bad.
For example: “Well, you went out and spent $100 on your hair and nails – I get to go out drinking with the guys when I want, so what?”
Does hypocrisy actually mean he is a liar? No, but selfish behavior that is present in the relationship can be a definite sign of deceit, or the possibility of deceit further into the relationship when left unresolved.