Dear Dr. Darcy:
My girlfriend has always walked the fine line between telling lies and omitting information. Usually when she does this she turns it around and I’m made to feel like it’s my fault for not understanding what she was ‘trying’ to say. So I wind up feeling stupid for misunderstanding her intention. But I feel like there’s a manipulative aspect to what she does. We’ve only been dating 7 months. I’m beginning to wonder if I should end this while we can still be friends. Is there some way to date a liar?
Dating someone like this would make me fucking crazy. Liars (and sociopaths) are among my list of deal breakers. But this isn’t about me. It’s about you. And yes, it is possible to date someone who has a history of lying, though it’s beyond high maintenance and better suited to attorneys who have developed an aptitude and fondness for deposing people.
Essentially, you can’t let her get away with lies, whether made outright or by omission. You need to have clarity and certainty about things, and you can’t let her manipulate you into feeling dumb. This is her defense tactic and so far it’s worked. If you want the relationship to work, you need to teach her how to treat you. Remember: You are responsible for how people treat you – not the other way around. So what do you do?
She comes home at midnight when you know she told you she was coming home at 10:30. You ask her why she’s late and she tells you she’s not late – she said she’d come home around 10:30…and midnight isn’t far off.
YOU: You told me you’d be home at 10:30. Moving forward, if you’re going to be later than the time that you reference, please call me.
HER: I said around 10:30. I’m not going to be accountable for coming home within the second of any hour.
YOU: I’m not asking you to be perfect. I’m asking you to call me if you’re going to be more than 10 minutes late.
HER: But I said ‘around’ 10:30.
YOU: That was my mistake. Moving forward, I’m not going to accept qualifiers like ‘around’ or ‘more or less.’
Dating someone like this is a lot of fucking work. I’m exhausted just writing this post. Ultimately, you’ll need to decide for yourself whether you deserve to date someone who can be honest with you, or whether some past life offense has relegated you to suffering in the present one. I think you know what I would do.
Writer's Stats: Female, gay.