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Effective Tactics to Cope with Pathological Liars

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We regularly encounter both harmless white lies and serious deception in various forms. Depending on several factors, there are several types of liars, and a pathological liar is one. A pathological liar is someone whose lying has become an uncontrollable and pervasive habit.

Dealing with this type of liar requires proper guidance and an understanding of their psychology. Many pathological liars struggle with their lies, and some lie simply to satisfy the needs of evil. If you want to help them or stay safe from them, you need to explore them. Let’s start exploring this article!

Understanding Pathological Lying

Pathological lying has deeper issues than regular ordinary lying. A pathological liar doesn’t just tell fibs to make themselves look better or get out of trouble but has a compulsive urge to lie even when there’s no need. They tell small to large lies almost all the time, even about everyday details that most people wouldn’t even think to lie about.

Compared to other types of lying, pathological lying is different as it’s not only about gaining some benefits in the end. A pathological liar feels a strong push inside them to tell fabricated stories even when telling the truth is better for them. Their lies become an addiction they can’t break free of even after thinking about telling no more lies. These lies can be of any context or form, whether it’s essential or not, but those lies give them a false sense of relief.

How to Recognize a Pathological Liar

You can recognise a pathological liar by several signs such as:

Consistent Untruthfulness

Even an average person might lie in a pinch or under pressure. However, a pathological liar uses falsehood consistently, like a regular habit. When you see someone lying often without any apparent purpose as part of a complex psychological issue, then that person is a pathological liar. They lie even when they don’t stand to gain anything from the deception.

Elaborate and Believable Stories

Pathological liars tell lies that aren’t adequately assembled or fabricated after much consideration. But they keep adding details to their lies to make them more engaging or convincing so that people find the truth plausible and believable. You’ll find out a pathological liar is telling you unnecessary details when there’s no need to do so.

Frequent Changes in Story

As pathological liars fabricate stories hastily with much detail, they often forget about some information they mentioned before and come up with different stories. Their inability to keep track of their fabrications makes their stories fluid. This inconsistency is a clear sign that the person you’re dealing with is a pathological liar.

How it Differences from Other Types of Lying

Since there are many different types of lying, you need to differentiate a pathological liar with these tips:

  • Frequency and Habit: Unlike other types of lying, pathological lying is a regular pattern of behaviour. This lie comes out of habit frequently, even when lying can harm the liar.
  • Lack of Clear Motive: Since pathological liars habitually lie out of nowhere, they often lack any discernible goal. As they don’t have a clear motive to lie, they usually find themselves getting into trouble after lying whilst confusing others.
  • Impact on the Liar: Although lies driven out of manipulation or as a strategic solution offer a temporary advantage to the liar, pathological lying doesn’t even provide that temporary positive result. That’s why a pathological liar often has a bad reputation and poor relations with others.

The Impact of Pathological Lying on Relationships

Pathological lying has profound negative impacts on relationships, such as:

Erosion of Trust: Since trust is like the foundation of any relationship, it isn’t as easy to rebuild when it is broken by constant lying. Even if people don’t leave the liar, they doubt most things. It makes both the liar and the other parties feel distant and betrayed.

Emotional Toll on Partners and Family: No one likes to hear lies from their close people, often for no reason. That’s why when a pathological liar keeps lying to their partner or family members, it causes them deep distress. This emotional toll can lead to severe problems.

Social Isolation: As the dishonesty of the pathological liar causes their friends, family, or other acquaintances to feel betrayed, they don’t trust the liar and try to avoid them in most cases. That’s why a pathological liar becomes isolated by society and lonelier.

The Impact of Pathological Lying on Relationships

Pathological lying has profound negative impacts on relationships, such as:

Erosion of Trust: Since trust is like the foundation of any relationship, it isn’t as easy to rebuild when it is broken by constant lying. Even if people don’t leave the liar, they doubt most things. It makes both the liar and the other parties feel distant and betrayed.

Emotional Toll on Partners and FamilyNo one likes to hear lies from their close people, often for no reason. That’s why when a pathological liar keeps lying to their partner or family members, it gives them deep distress. This emotional toll can lead to severe problems.

Social IsolationAs the dishonesty of the pathological liar makes their friends, family, or other acquaintances feel betrayed, they don’t trust the liar and try to avoid it in most cases. That’s why a pathological liar becomes isolated by society and lonelier.

How to Talk to a Pathological Liar Effectively?

If you wish to approach a pathological liar to help or for any other reason, here are some tips on how to converse with them:

Approach with Empathy: Since pathological liars also struggle with lying, and many of them are actually trying hard to stop this habit, you need to start the conversation with empathy rather than accusation. This will encourage them to open up about the situation and be honest about it.

Focus on the Behaviour, Not the Person: You can’t judge the entire person just because they have the problem of pathological lying. It’s the behaviour that needs to be addressed, not the person. This will help create a comfortable environment for them to have constructive conversations about their lies.

Encourage Honesty: Many pathological liars become one after seeing the appreciation of fabrication grow day by day. That’s why it’s important to encourage even a little honesty to help them break free from the cycle of lying. Also, appreciate them whenever they tell the truth, even though the truth isn’t fabulous. It will encourage them to be more open and honest.

When to Seek Professional Help

In some cases, dealing with pathological liars isn’t easy; you may need professional help. Some of the scenarios include:

Persistent and Disruptive Lying: If a pathological liar is slowly changing, it’s good. However, seeking professional guidance is necessary when a liar keeps increasing their lies, which becomes a significant factor that damages their daily life, work, and relationships. Only a professional can provide successful strategies to address underlying issues and solve the problem gradually.

Underlying Mental Health Issues: In some cases, pathological liars are born from deep-rooted traumas and psychological problems. Only an expert in this field can diagnose and address the issue and offer proper treatment to help out the person struggling with pathological lies.

Strained Relationships: Sometimes, even when pathological lying isn’t damaging to other areas, it still strains relationships, as trust is the most critical factor in any relationship. So, pathological liars often face problems with their partners, and the situation becomes too complex. It’s a crucial moment to consult with a professional.

Conclusion

Pathological lying is a complex issue that can make the lives of the liar and their close people very difficult. However, even a pathological liar can change with proper understanding, support, and intervention. That’s why it’s essential to understand and recognise this behaviour with effective communication and professional help.

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