While lying is generally not a good thing, there are situations where someone you thought would be a casual fling ends up becoming something more significant. Even if the lie was minor, it can still weigh on your conscience knowing that your relationship began with deception. Fortunately, there are ways to make amends and move forward.
1. Examine your lie
Why did you feel the need to lie in the first place? Was it out of boredom and a desire to create a new identity, or was it a mistake? Sometimes when we meet someone, we become so engrossed in the moment that we lose control of what we say. Small lies might include statements like "I've been living in California for years," when it's only been a few years, or "I did great in biology," when you actually received a C. While these lies are still lies, they are generally considered harmless. However, larger lies, such as claiming to have survived cancer when you were never diagnosed or saying you graduated from college when you actually dropped out at age 21, can have more significant consequences.
2. Figure out if your lie spawned more lies
Did you make a single false statement, or did it escalate into a completely fabricated story? If it's the latter case, you may find yourself in a difficult position, especially if you had multiple opportunities to come clean but instead chose to compound the lie.
3. Ask yourself if you'd stay with someone if the tables were turned
Imagine your boyfriend just confessed to lying about something similar. Would you feel upset or empathetic? Trying to empathize with their perspective can help you prepare for what comes next.
4. If it's minimal, consider dropping it entirely
You might be remorseful for not telling the truth, but if it was a trivial matter that has no bearing on your relationship, it may be best to move on. For instance, if you lied about watching a movie, it's not a big deal... unless you also claimed to have written a fanfic about the characters.
5. Figure out if your lie might compromise his health
If you fabricated stories about sex or seeing other people at the beginning of your relationship, it's a significant issue. When two individuals initiate a sexual relationship, they place a certain level of faith in each other. If you claimed to have undergone an STD test when you didn't, and you start experiencing symptoms of gonorrhea, it's imperative that you take action immediately and never take such a crucial matter lightly again.
6. Take full blame
Avoid justifying your lies with excuses. The fact remains that you were dishonest. Blaming it on reasons like "You were too intimidating" or "I just wanted to have some fun" might unintentionally shift the responsibility onto your partner. As an adult, it's essential to take full accountability for your actions. Additionally, it's crucial to express genuine remorse.
7. Try to write it out
Confronting someone face-to-face can be challenging at times. You may be apprehensive about seeing their reaction, but it's crucial for you to be in the same room as them when delivering the news. This demonstrates that you're sorry and prepared to accept the consequences. If it's difficult to articulate your thoughts, you can hand them a note to read. It's also acceptable to write it out for yourself, as it can be therapeutic.
8. Think up a gameplan if you want to retain his trust
Words are insignificant without action to back them up. After revealing the truth, communicate to your partner how things will be different moving forward.
9. See if your lie could be beneficial to you in any way
One potential benefit of a lie is the opportunity to improve oneself once the truth is revealed. For instance, if you initially told your partner that you were on the verge of a significant promotion at work when, in reality, you were only recently hired in an entry-level position, you've inadvertently set a goal for yourself. Despite not being truthful, you may be motivated to work harder towards that promotion because you now have something to prove.
10. Accept the consequences
Every relationship is unique, and this guy may choose to end things if the lie is too significant for him to overlook. It's up to him to determine that. However, at the very least, you can approach your next relationship with a clean conscience and a valuable lesson on the importance of honesty, even if it's not as thrilling.