IS YOUR SPOUSE LYING TO YOU?
A Marriage Without Trust Will Never Last.
By Angela Guzman
Have you ever wondered if your spouse was telling you the truth? Maybe it was something small or perhaps it was a large ordeal. Either way, at some point, you felt like the truth wasn’t clear. Sometimes, your insecurities and self-doubt can blur your vision. When you’re unsure of yourself, it can be difficult to believe another individual. It’s important to distinguish between your intuition and uncertainties.
You might be asking yourself, why would my spouse lie? According to Very Well Mind, reasons can vary: to avoid conflict, to supposedly protect someone’s feelings, to avoid the consequences of their behavior, to postpone having to make changes in lifestyle, to hide something they did or didn’t do, because they are fearful of rejection, to control a situation, to avoid being embarrassed, to make themselves look good, and/or to make themselves appear more successful, special or talented than they really are.
Now before you jump to conclusions, it’s important to have information and facts to justify your accusation. Every marriage is different, and your spouse may handle stress and/or grief in a way that is self-perpetuating. If you believe your spouse is being deceitful, there are a few red flags you can be on the lookout for:
Inconsistencies are being shared.
There are an array of inconsistencies that could be shared. A spouse who is lying may provide various renditions of a story – key details and descriptions could be left out or swapped for a less problematic alternative. If relevant factors continue to change throughout conversations or a retelling, it is a good idea to voice your concerns and ask your spouse what actually happened. In some cases, a spouse may forget their original lie and inadvertently create another lie as a band-aid.
Being extremely defensive.
Someone who is telling the truth doesn’t need to be extremely defensive because they do not feel the need to prove anything. However, someone who is lying may feel inclined to put up a shield and become emotionally combative to hide the truth.
Keep in mind, some people are naturally defensive – so, it is important to use your own intuition before concluding that your spouse is lying. However, if the defensive behavior is a reaction to simple things there may be a larger issue to address.
Body language and facial expressions that do not match their words.
Oftentimes, actions speak louder than words. The silent reactions an individual has are much more difficult to hide than actual words. If your spouse’s language doesn’t connect to their body language, you maybe walking on questionable ground. If you’re perceiving an issue, speak up and talk to your spouse about your concerns. Moreover, you know how your spouse deals with various situations; if your spouse is displaying strange body language and facial expressions, this could be an indicator that they are lying.
Eye contact is one of the most important nonverbal ways your spouse indicates that he/she is focused, paying attention, and engaged. Ultimately, eye contact relays that you are listening. Eye contact is ingrained in our DNA. In historical caveman days, eye contact was the difference between life and death, attraction, and general indifference.
Nonetheless, use your best judgment and do not accuse your spouse of lying on the pretense that they won’t engage in eye contact. Take note of your spouse’s participation in a general conversation and be willing to consider other factors taking place in your spouse’s life that could contribute to a less engaged attitude.
If your spouse is being secretive, this can be a valid reason to be concerned. Has your spouse recently been glued to their phone, stepping out for “casual” conversations that they normally would’ve answered beside you, or become frequently absent and/or unavailable? If so, those actions could be red flags to discuss with your spouse. Now, it’s important to consider all of the factors. If your spouse is managing a big project at work or mediating family drama, then your suspicions of deceit are most likely spun from your desire to get more attention. However, if your spouse is continuously excessive with their need to be secret there may be a bigger issue at hand.
Resist confronting your spouse until you have more information and validity for concerns. If your spouse isn’t lying to you, the last thing you want to do is cause unnecessary tension and heartache.
The lack of pronouns in their dialogue.
Pronouns are important because they validate people’s identity. If your spouse is not using pronouns when they are communicating, this could be an indicator that they are lying to you about their other interactions. If you suspect that your spouse is being deceitful, try to pay attention to the way he/she describes other people or if they are leaving out important details in a story.
Instead of a free-flowing conversation, a spouse that is potentially not telling the truth, would use fillers and respond with evasive answers that create a lot of questions. Make an effort to be observant, if you are concerned.
Lying can feel like the ultimate betrayal. If your spouse isn’t telling the truth, dishonesty can create mistrust, bitterness, and anger to arise. It’s hard to understand why your spouse would like to you; however, it’s crucial that you assess the situation before accusing your spouse of lying. Be sure that you’re not casting your own insecurities and personal issues onto your spouse. And, if your spouse is lying, identify their motive and use that knowledge to determine how you should respond to their lie. A lie may not be meant to hurt another person, but in many cases, it’s a form of self-protection that people resort to.