You don’t realize how important honesty is until you’ve been lied to. I recently had this experience in my Meetup group.
I generally have a pretty good sense about people and trust my judgement. Membership in the group requires certain things including being Single (never married), Divorced, or Widowed.
I generally do a light background check on most people just to be sure. With one recent applicant, I didn’t dig deep enough. He looked like a decent guy. He indicated he was divorced.
At the first event he attended, he and a couple others were talking about getting out and starting to date. As I entered the conversation I started asking how long each of them had been divorced.
He said he was still separated and his divorce wasn’t final yet. This caught me off guard. I obviously didn’t dig deep enough.
This created a problem. Not only was he still married and attending a singles event, he lied about his marital status on his profile. I had to remove him from the group.
While this may not seem like a really big deal in today’s society, the members of the group appreciate the fact that the group is supposed to be a safe welcoming place for singles to meet. It’s not a place for them to worry whether someone is married or not.
His integrity was damaged that night because he was attending the event under false pretenses. That hurts his chances of getting back into the group should he try at a later date.
That’s a given. Does that make it okay? No, it doesn’t.
We can parse words and say it’s okay to lie if it protects someone’s feelings. It’s okay to lie about an event such as a surprise party to keep it a surprise. These are called white lies.
I’m not going to argue about that being right or wrong. We all know it’s wrong, regardless. It’s just that you don’t want to hurt someone’s feeling or potentially spoil an event. Okay…I understand.
What I don’t understand is why you might feel the need to lie about other things such as who you are, what you’ve done, where you’ve been., or not accepting responsibility for your actions.
Each time you lie, you damage your credibility. You might get away with the lies for a while, but eventually you’re going to get caught. Then you have one of two choices; continue to lie or come clean.
The mature person will come clean and admit their lies. The immature person is going to continue to compound their problems with more lies.
Honesty is always the best policy.
I’ve learned that over the years and they have been some mighty tough lessons. In the end though it has made me a better person. I’m assuming many of you have been down this same road.
Being honest isn’t always easy. I can be a heavy load to bare. It could cost you a friendship, a date, or a relationship.
Never try to start a relationship on a lie. Don’t lie about personal things like age, height, weight, addictions, marriage status, etc. You’re going to get found out sooner or later anyway.
As you start to develop a relationship, share some of the skeletons you have in your closet. Things like the number of marriages, any affairs, financial problems, or other baggage that comes with you is good to get on the table early.
In some instances, your past may end a relationship even before it gets off the ground. It’s better to share up front than to be accused of lying or hiding information later on.
Your potential mate will be much more appreciative of you being forthright and shows that you are willing to have some of the hard conversations early on. It also builds trust more quickly by being candid.
As I finish this up, it seems strange to have to have this conversation with mature adults, yet here we are.
As hard as honesty can be at times, I’ve been rewarded more times that not for being up front with people.
I may not have always gotten the business, the date, or the relationship I was looking for, but my integrity was intact. And, I know I made it harder for people to speak ill of me.
Think about this the next time you’re filling out an online dating profile or getting into a conversation that may require you to reveal some of your past. Don’t damage your future by trying to look good today.
I hope I’ve given you some food for thought to help you make healthier relationship decisions.
Please feel free share your thoughts, your successes, and your missteps to help others get better one step at a time. Leave a comment below or drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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