I’ve been lied to, many times in fact. I’ve definitely been lied to more times than I will ever really know. Some of those lies are made with no specific bad intent, and are ultimately not so bad in the long run. That happens.
I’m told tiny lies all the time that only serve to puzzle me as to why people immediately leap to lying instead of saying that they really mean. “I have to stop texting, my battery is running low” really means “I have things to do, please stop distracting me”. If I were told the latter by my best friend instead of the former, the result of me giving her space would be the same. I don’t see why a lie is the way that she chooses to deal with me. That’s her issue, not mine. It doesn’t bother me because I have decoded her intent. It just confuses me that telling a lie is somehow easier than telling the truth.
One lie, depending on the magnitude, can beget an intricate web. It becomes a drug that keeps pumping through the veins of the illusion from the black heart of the original lie. The first lie might even seem small and insignificant, but as more lies pile on, the intensity of the need to lie increases. In for a penny, in for a pound, as they say.
The worst are the lies we tell ourselves. Often these lies are learned, because we receive them from other people, even people we trust; if it comes from someone we trust, it must be true. Sadly, this logic isn’t sound.
The worst lie someone has ever told me was the direct opposite of what I thought the best thing someone could tell me in truth. I love you.
Sure, this lie made me really happy in the beginning. How could it not? I was in love, after all, and it felt amazing to have that love returned. But finding out that the entire relationship was balanced on top of a complete fallacy did damage that I used to think was completely irreparable. I’ve shed innumerable tears, always alone, always lying to myself and telling myself that I was not worthy of love, that I was only useful to others for what I could do for them. I give a lot to those I care about, and never expect much in return. I felt, upon uncovering the lie, that I had been used – everything taken, nothing returned. This lie developed into a phobia – not a fear, because I can logically look at my situation and know that what I fear is complete bullshit, much like someone who has a phobia of spiders can know that spiders aren’t that bad in theory but freezes in terror at the sight of one. My phobia is that once sex has been obtained, I am no longer of use to a partner. That is all I am.
Complete and utter bullshit! But it pops up in my mind. I tell it to fuck off, but it lingers there. I’m working on killing it. I am much more than my body, and very much more than what my body can do to please people. I’ve worked hard to refute the lies I have told myself because of this betrayal. I am not preyed upon because I appear to be an “easy target” – I am not preyed upon because I am only marginally attractive and therefore will spring at any opportunity for someone to enjoy my company. The lies told me to don’t always have anything to do with who I am or what I do. It comes down to the fact that other people have their own shit to deal with, and it is incredibly unfortunate that they drag me into it with them. Sure, loving me was a lie, but to keep that lie alive for so long, there must have been something in me that was valued. There are easier ways to get satisfaction, after all; lying to me and keeping me in your life is an extremely complex way to masturbate.
I don’t write this to call anyone out on their lies. I could have easily named names, or listed every lie that has ever hurt me in hopes that it would shame people into apologizing (I’m not looking for that), but this isn’t about anyone but me. I am learning to make myself a priority, which is something with which I have had a huge challenge in the past.
Your lies, initially, are your business, but they do have effect on those around you. I write this to help me process the fact that the lies I have been told sometimes don’t have anything to do with me, and I am just a bystander, innocent or not. Perhaps I should have known better, but life is a learning process. I lived. I loved. I learned. The lesson was pretty fucking dark, but I learned nonetheless. I open myself up to experiences that are not based on horrendous lies.
I’ve opened my eyes and realized that there are likely hundreds of lies I have told myself over the years – lies that I learned from those around me, and lies that came as the result of someone else lashing out at me because they felt backed into a corner of shit. It is now my task to identify those lies and defeat them with truth. It might be a lengthy process, but it will be well worth my time.
I also write this so people will hopefully feel the call to look at themselves and reflect on the lies in their lives: both the lies they tell those around them, and the lies they tell themselves. Stop lying. Be honest. As cliche as it might sound, it really is the best policy. Sometimes the truth hurts, but trust me: lies can hurt even worse.
(And please, whatever you do, keep your pity. Things happen. They sometimes suck. But I’ve grown stronger, and hate calling attention from other people to the negative things in my life.)