Lie to Me


He told me he loved me, but I kept noticing what he said didn’t add up.  I wasn’t trying to catch him in a lie, but I noticed one person told me one thing about him and another said something different.  They didn’t know they were contradicting each other.  I quietly observed his behavior, made mental notes, and compared stories.  I asked questions of others.  I discovered that he said whatever he thought I wanted to hear, then told someone else what he thought they wanted to hear.  He lied and schemed his way through life.  He lied to get our church to give him money.  He angrily accused me of all kinds of terrible things when I asked him questions.  He tried to convince me I was just stupid.  It ended in a big blow up with him shaking me in frustration, eyes bulging from his head, and screaming that I knew him and couldn’t actually think he was the monster I accused him of being.  (No.  Perfectly sane gentlemen shake their girlfriends and scream at them.  Really.) 

I threatened to call the police if he didn’t leave.  And when he finally left, I laid with my face in the carpet and cried for hours.  I wanted to call him back and tell him it was all a mistake and surely he wasn’t a monster.  It took me months to shake myself free from him, but I finally did it.  He was like kudzu, creeping in and taking over everything, looking pretty from afar, but full of poison. 

I met him soon after moving to Nashville.  I was 22 years old, ready to meet the man of my dreams and get married, and very, very lonely.  He was strikingly handsome – extremely tall with jet black hair and aqua blue eyes.  People regularly stopped us while we were out to tell us how good we looked together.  He adored me, pampered me, and made me feel like a queen.  We had fun together, seemed to have everything in common and complemented one another well.  Yet I felt constantly suspicious of him.  I knew I couldn’t trust him, but had no reason to suspect anything until we’d been dating for nine months.  I made it three more months with him, trying to work it out, unable to believe the truth. 

I was dating a sociopath. 

After this experience, I find myself very sensitive about lying.  I cannot stand to feel like someone is trying to manipulate me.  And yet, it still happens.  It happens because I am trying to be the sweet, kind, forgiving, gentle young woman who is gracious to all and doesn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or cause discomfort to anyone else. 

Many times in the past I’ve been guilty of glossing over someone’s lie and hoping for the best.  I’ve quietly resented the person who hurts me, rather than speaking up and getting to the bottom of things.  I use the word “guilty” here because the right thing to do is to go to the person and discuss the situation with them as soon as possible. 

It is possible I’ve misunderstood or don’t have all the facts.  In that case, what does it hurt to ask questions?  Rather than silently watch them to confirm my suspicion, I can go to them immediately and give them a chance to set the record straight.  That does two good things.  First, it allows them to explain their reasons for the behavior in question.  If there is wrongdoing, we then have an opportunity to work on the problem together, apologize, and move on.  If there is no wrongdoing, it clears the air. 

If there is a problem and the person confronted refuses to admit it, then at least it lets them know I’m aware of what’s going on and might prevent the problem from getting bigger.  Secondly, it makes our relationship more real, more open.  It makes it a real relationship, rather than an acquaintance. 

When I don’t confront a situation immediately, hurt builds on top of hurt until there’s an explosion.  The explosion doesn’t have to be loud, and the other person doesn’t even have to know it has happened, but once it happens there’s often no going back. 

The problem is that confrontation is hard.  How do you look someone in the eye and tell them you think, for example, they lied to you or they are trying to control you through anger?  I want people to like me.  I don’t want to cause offense.  It hurts me to hurt someone else. 

Confrontation also opens you up to accusation.  When a person feels defensive, they often come back fighting.  They may throw wild accusations your way, and then their accusations might not be that wild.  They may know exactly what to say to hit the sensitive underbelly, the thing you work so hard on and don’t want to fail in.  That is NOT fun.

I write that the truth hurts because it really does.  It’s easier to just walk away.  It’s not so easy to say the hard thing, ask the tough question, and handle the anger or hurt that comes your way.  But if hurt, confusion, or pain isn’t discussed, something inside the person who has been wronged dies.  Maybe it’s the love they once felt.  Maybe it’s the respect or their self-respect that dies. 

You’ve seen them – the couples eating their dinner in silence, scowling at one another and looking around the room for anything more interesting to focus on.  They look like they’ve been married forever and would be happy if their spouse disappeared for good.  They try to talk, but they just end up fighting, so they sit in silence.  What happened?  Were they ever in love?  What happened probably wasn’t one big thing, but hundreds of little things over the years that they didn’t think they needed to discuss so they could keep the peace for today.  Then one day they woke up and despised one another.  They can’t point to one specific thing, but it’s there.  Years of resentment and anger and hurt, and if they try to talk about it now it just turns into an all-out war full of acid words and no understanding.  They are cowards who couldn’t talk about the little irritations, so when the big problems came they had no skills to deal with them either. 

Silence kills.

If I had stayed silent and continued dating the beautiful man with the luxurious lifestyle and black heart, what would have become of me?  I might have married him.  I might have had children with him.  And something inside of me would have died.

What’s your story?  Have you experienced anything like this?  I’d like to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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12 Comments

Filed under Spiritual Life

12 responses to “Lie to Me

  1. cristina nash

    Been there, a couple of times. While I do believe that people can change, I eventually had to realize that I was not going to be the catalyst for the change..it has to come from inside the person. When the time was right, God presented me with my soulmate, no assembly required!

  2. Audrey Bolek

    Kimberly,
    Thanks again for sharing, especially from your own personal experiences. That touches me.

    This statement that you said, I think, describes me:

    It happens because I am trying to be the sweet, kind, forgiving, gentle young woman who is gracious to all and doesn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or cause discomfort to anyone else.

    If I don’t confront, it’s not helping the other person or myself, but I sure want to make sure it’s how the Lord wants me to handle it. Maybe that goes without saying, but that’s how I think and want to act.

    I’m almost 50 years old, been married 30 years, have 2 children, and thank the Lord I have learned a few things. On the job training. One being confrontation, I’ve not liked it, and shyed away from it many times. I haven’t mastered it, but have grown in this area. I’ve had some relationships through the years with those who I’ve had to develop confrontational skills. I agree confronting asap is the best action, but not without going to our Father first and without pride. I want to re-read this post and ponder it some more before I comment more.

    I’m thankful you stood up for truth in that relationship, which was not easy, and have been spared a lot of grief for yourself and possible children you could have had together.

    Blessings,
    Audrey

    • Audrey,
      I think the most loving thing we can do in some situations is speak the truth. Speaking the truth is hard and it can cause pain and the results can be hard to manage, but it is the right thing to do. Seeking God first is always the way to go, but His word is very clear about the importance of the truth. Some things are just fact. As a Christian, everything we say should be surrounded by love. And everything we say should be true.

  3. Kelly Sims

    What would have become of you?

    I assure you that it wouldn’t have gotten any better. Only worse.

    I recently started talking to an ex-boyfriend. He contacted me via facebook. This wasn’t my last ex-boyfriend or even the one before that. This was — let’s see, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 — there were 6 ex-boyfriends ahead of him. But, the previous six meant nothing to me. (I know that sounds bad.)

    But, this guy really, really DID.

    Unfortunately, he hadn’t changed even though he still looked so good on the outside. But his soul is so dark.

    In fact, the moment I started talking with him, I felt an instant disconnect with God. Instant.

    Thank God I didn’t accept his offer when he said, “Girl, it would be so cool to see you sometime. Maybe?”

    Someone very close to me told me to stop talking to him.

    I said, “Don’t you want me to be happy?”

    And she said, “You want me to support you killing yourself?! If you don’t listen to me, then you will regret this for the rest of your life.

    There is no hope, Kelly, when the person you love is not good for you.”

    She was right.

    I should have known. I DID know.

    This sums up dating a sociopath.

  4. Antonia (Toni)

    Kimberly, each blog you write shines the light on the darkness in our lives. Being real with people not only will set you free but will set others free as well.

    One thing I have learned in life is the thing they are trying to protect is their own “image” of themselves. They don’t realize the very “image” they think they are is in reality – prison.

    Only God can set them free and only if they are willing to allow God to do what is necessary to topple the “image”.

    Isaiah 61 – He came to set the captive free; and the opening of the prison to them that are bound.

    God not only sets them free but also sets free those that cross their paths – if they are willing too.

    Keep writing! You are loved!!

    • Thanks, Toni! And the truth will set you free… Sometimes the consequences of telling the truth can seem worse than allowing the lie to continue, but we are to do the right thing at all times, not just when it’s convenient. My ex-boyfriend only said what was convenient for him at the time. He’s an extreme example of what happens when we choose to live that way.

  5. Kelly Sims

    I’m sad to say that I know quite a bit about sociopaths. I’m sure there is a great deal of literature out there about the subject; however, literature can never take the place of firsthand knowledge.

    (BTW, sociopaths can also be women; not just men. Have you ever seen the movies, “Black Widow,” and “The Last Seduction.” Both movies are about female sociopaths.)

    From what I’ve observed, sociopaths are extremely selfish, extremely narcissistic, very detached, and huge liars. I seriously doubt they are capable of telling the truth.

    They will never care about your feelings, wishes, dreams, or thoughts. They only care about their own feelings.

    They will never love you, and if reciprocal love is something that is important to you, then you may very well go mad in this type of relationship.

    The only people they are capable of loving are their own children, and this is not because the child is so wonderful to them. It is simply because their child is a part of themselves, and their love for self is all that matters.

    They are typically very good-looking, very sexy, and good in bed. This is what lures a person in.

    They are also extremely exploitative, and they will take, take, take from you until there’s nothing left to take (in their opinion) and then they will leave.

    This is obviously not a pleasant subject; yet, people like this are very real, and they are out there.

    I’m sorry to sound so negative; but, you asked! LOL

    • No, they are not pleasant people in the long run, but they can seem very pleasant for a time. Scott Peterson is a sociopath and is now sitting in jail for life for killing his wife and unborn child. It’s a scary thing.

  6. Robert Wenger

    Hi Kim You shure are special. I love your bog. The lie, so true most of the time, if the Godly girls will pay attention , they would have less heartach in the future.Am excited to hear you are going to Haiti, keep us infor;med

    • Thanks, Uncle Robert! I’m so glad you’re reading it. And yes, we must learn to pay attention to the signs and trust our instincts. If I would’ve trusted my instincts with this guy, I would’ve ended it on the first date.

  7. I know all too well the effects of dating a “sociopath”. My ex-husband was very both very charming and very destructive (to all around him). He was very good looking, very intelligent, and funny. But he also had a darker side. He would snap and get angry at the drop of a hat. He would put me down so much, I began to believe I was worthless. He slit his wrist in front of me. He would belittle and hit me. He was an atheist. I believed I could change him. Unfortunately, I was wrong. We did divorce eventually and thankfully had no children together. No one should be in any relationship that makes them unhappy and is founded on lies and untruth. Luckily, I am now married to the most wonderful man in the world and have a gorgeous fifteen month old son. It was well worth the wait. I believe all of our experiences make us who we are, and make us end up where we are supposed to be. Thankfully, I was strong enough to survive and still have a little part of my old self in there somewhere. God Bless all those who have the same struggles.

  8. Pingback: The Blank Canvas « Kimberly Wenger's Blog

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