• 21/05/2024 06:24

How to recognize a pathological liar: signs that he has crept into your life

Everyone lies from time to time. Whether you embellished a job application a little or told a friend you loved vegan, gluten-free, sandy-flavored cookies, we've all told lies. But there is a big difference between an occasional lie and a pathological lie, which is a lie so strong that it affects your life and causes great distress to others. The number of search queries on how to recognize a pathological liar has long increased on Google.

ContentWhat is a pathological liar? How to recognize a pathological liarWhat causes a person to be a pathological liar?Can pathological liars change?

Unfortunately, this means that many of us have to deal with them. The good news is that there are plenty of hacks and resources to help you recognize this personality type. WomanEL decided to collect for you all the important things you need to know about him.

What is a pathological liar?

Pathological liars are often described as cold, calculating, manipulative people, says Drew Curtis, a licensed psychologist who studies pathological liars and deception in relationships. And although this is not always the case, it is understandable why most people do not want to be deceived.  

Pathological lying is not a diagnosis in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5-TR). But it can occur alongside other diagnoses recognized by the DSM-5-TR. Two examples of this are narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) and antisocial personality disorder (ASPD). This is according to licensed clinical psychologist Ryan Hawes, Ph.D.

Pathological liars are people who tell lies that are frequent, pervasive and excessive. By the way, the terms compulsive liar and pathological liar are often used interchangeably by mental health professionals because pathological liars may feel a strong urge (or compulsion) to lie and not consider the consequences of their lies, Dr. Curtis adds.

This may come as a surprise. But often pathological liars mean no harm and have no nefarious reason for their dishonesty. He may lie about the weather, what he had for breakfast, or who he talked to yesterday. The lie comes automatically, as if on autopilot.

In other situations, a person may have a motive to deceive, such as trying to appear as a hero or victim in a story. They do this to gain sympathy or admiration.

How to recognize a pathological liar

You can often tell if you are communicating with a pathological liar by how often they feed you lies and whether the lies seem dramatic or grandiose. However, some scientists also suggest that most people tend to show nonverbal signs of lying. These nonverbal cues can indicate that someone is lying:

  • Avoiding gaze at the person or intentional eye contact that lasts too long.
  • Fidgeting or twitching.< /li>
  • Restless movements of the feet and legs.
  • Frequent changes in body posture.
  • Vagueness and lack of direct answers to questions.
  • Plays with hair or presses fingers to lips.
  • Sweating or redness of skin.

Still , it is important to understand that each person may also exhibit individual signs that indicate that they are lying. These traits may be influenced by genetics, cultural influences or behavior, personal experiences, and situational factors.

It's not always easy to tell if someone is lying to you. In addition to trying to tell if someone is lying to you by their nonverbal actions, listen to what they say. Usually in their stories there are inconsistencies or things that seem completely incredible.

If you don't know for sure whether someone is lying to you, but suspect that they might, do some research. Ask a third party or find information online. You can even record your conversations and compare them later if you think someone is trying to manipulate or control you with their lies.

What makes a person be a pathological liar?

What motivates a pathological liar, Source: freepik.com

There is a theory, supported by one University of Southern California study, that the brains of pathological liars are physically different from the brains of non-pathological liars. Of course, as with many mental health issues, we need more research.

However, mental health experts generally consider pathological lying to be a learned behavior and a defense mechanism that can develop as early as childhood. Pathological lies protect a person from condemnation, rejection and rejection. If you've ever dealt with similar emotions or situations, especially as a child, you probably understand how storytelling can be helpful when you want to be accepted. But if this continues over time, the lie can develop into a serious problem.

Can pathological liars change?

According to Dr. Curtis, a pathological liar can change on his own if he is aware of his negative behavior and sincerely wants to work on himself. He adds that people may also seek help because they – contrary to popular belief – feel remorse and guilt. They may also feel that something needs to change, for example because they are about to lose a job or a partner.

In addition to raising awareness, a therapist can help someone practice being honest and determine whether the lies are worth it. And when they see how helpful honesty is, they are more likely to tell the truth in the future.

Finally, if excessive lying is caused by a medical condition, treating that condition with the help of a mental health professional is a great idea.

You've probably heard about gaslighting, but what to do if you do it to yourself? Follow these tips.

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