Pathological lying, also known as compulsive, chronic, or habitual lying, is not a psychological disorder and it has no documented list of symptoms. It is a common symptom in a number of mental health issues, such as borderline personality disorder and narcissistic personality disorder.
Pathological liars may share some common traits:
1. They paint themselves in the light of victim-hood in order to gain attention.
2. Some of them have poor self-esteem. People with low self-esteem are more likely to demonstrate pathological lying symptoms because they are trying to make themselves feel better about how they look, their accomplishments, and what they have in life.
3. They will “study” you first. They don’t want you to know the truth. They study the person and examine what that person might or might not believe.
4. The pathological liars lack empathy. They don’t care how the lying behavior may make someone feel. They don’t think before they lie.
5. They often show no emotions when they are lying, which makes them believable.
6. They don’t do the common things you think all liars do. Liars don’t always touch their nose or avoid eye contact. Some of them are really good at giving you direct eye contact. They learned how to evade people with direct eye contact, sociable smiles, and humor.
7. The pathological liars tend to manipulate more than anyone else. They know what do you want and don’t want, because they study you. They use psychical, emotional or mental “tricks” to distract you from the truth.
8. Some pathological liars show no discomfort when they are caught lying. They may become even aggressive and angry when caught. But, no pathological liar is the same.
Also the pathological lying may include some of these personality traits:
- Abusive behavior
- Obsessive, controlling, and compulsive behaviors
- Jealous behavior
- Manipulative behaviors
- Socially awkward, uncomfortable, or isolated
- Low self-esteem
If you think that someone you love has a problem with pathological lying, seek help from a qualified therapist. Pathological lying is a really complex phenomenon, differing from other mental illnesses. It has many life-changing consequences for those who must live with the illness. Currently, there is not enough research in the area of pathological lying to guarantee a cure.
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