What to do about my husband's white lies?
April 24, 2009 3:56 PM Subscribe
My husband tells white lies and it really bothers me. I'm not sure what to do.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (51 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
First, I am absolutely certain my husband isn't lying about anything major, like infidelity, drug use, a gambling addiction, etc. But his little lies drive me up a wall.
For example, he'll promise to do the laundry, and when I come home he'll say he didn't have time, when he was clearly playing videogames or watching movies. I'll call him and he won't answer, then he'll say work called (he has one of those jobs where he's on call 24/7), but the phone records say otherwise. He'll say he's going to take his lunch to work to save money, but the credit card statement shows charges to restaurants. (I handle the bills btw.)
I'm pretty sure he's telling these lies to avoid arguments. In the first example, he was being lazy; in the second, he didn't feel like talking; and in the third he forgot to take his lunch. None of these things are a big deal to me; it's the LYING that bothers me. When confronted, he focuses on the act itself and not the lie. He doesn't understand why I don't trust him, and he says I'm being petty when I bring up these things.
He grew up with an extremely controlling parent who monitored his every move, and my theory is that these types of lies became habitual for him in order to avoid trouble. "Yes, I have my homework done" is a pretty normal lie for a teenager. I don't want to turn into that parent, but it's still really frustrating. I ask him a question ("I thought you said you had to work late tonight?") and he acts like it's an interrogation.
He's also really forgetful and not detail-oriented at all, whereas I'm very literal. For example, when I say I woke up around 6 am, I mean that within 5 minutes either way. He'll say he got up around 6 but he could mean 5:30 or he could mean 7.
He is a wonderful, patient, generous guy who treats me well and loves me more than anything, so this is not part of some larger pattern of jerkiness. I love him too and I don't want this to be a source of strain on our marriage.
So, am I making a big deal over nothing? Is this just normal behavior? Should I call him on these things or let them go?