How To Tell If Someone Is Lying
Can’t figure out if your boyfriend, girlfriend or spouse is being honest with you? Sometimes in a relationship we don’t know what to believe, but at times like this it may be wisest to question why we’re losing trust in the first place. Here is our advice to Samantha.
Samantha from Salem, OR writes:
“Lately I don’t know what’s going on with my boyfriend. He stays out late at night a lot, and I know he’s not at work, but when I ask him questions he just tells me he’s been out at the pub. He seems distracted and evasive, like his mind is elsewhere. I think he might be cheating on me, but then again, he has no history of cheating. How do I know if he is lying to me? Thanks.”
Hi Samantha. Unfortunately there is really no way to know someone is lying to you unless you can prove it. You can try to think about times he’s lied in the past and what some giveaway signs could be—subtextual clues in the ways he speaks or behaves, particular gestures that give him away, and so on. Once a relationship starts to feel like a poker match, though, it might be time to ask yourself why it feels like a poker match. Before you hire a PI or start following your boyfriend around, maybe you should ask yourself why you feel the way you do.
By itself, staying out late at night is meaningless. Distraction can have numerous causes. Neither by itself denotes cheating. Nonetheless, you feel mistrustful. Why do you feel like you can no longer trust your boyfriend? If you think he may be lying to you, then you’ve reached a point in your relationship where you no longer can expect the truth. This could be because of something in your boyfriend’s recent behavior, or it could be because you have become suspicious for unrelated reasons. Or it could point toward an underlying, unresolved issue plaguing the relationship from both ends.
Relationships are built fundamentally on trust. There is no way to ever truly know what’s going on in another person’s head. Love is a bond which is built on mutual trust and respect. If you feel like you’re not being respected, that might explain why you no longer feel like you trust your boyfriend—whether or not he is cheating on you. Or it could be that that you are the one who is distracted, and not your boyfriend. Before you go trying to prove your boyfriend is cheating on you, it’s best you examine your own thoughts, feelings and motivations, and look at the context of the relationship instead of this specific matter in isolation. Try to figure out whether the problem could have origins in your own mind or not. If so, work on resolving those things and then see if the situation looks different with a clearer head. Can you think of other things which have been bugging you about the relationship which you could address directly—things you know are happening? By talking directly with your boyfriend and resolving concrete issues, you may accomplish more than you would through suspicion.
It doesn’t mean you’re wrong, of course; but it does mean that there is something fundamentally awry with the relationship from one or both ends, regardless of whether your boyfriend is lying to you. Work on figuring out what that is and the answer will follow!