Belfast Telegraph

Best friend can’t talk without telling lies

Northern Ireland's number one agony aunt Fiona Hurley answers your problems

Dear Fiona, My best friend has become a compulsive liar and it's really, really beginning to annoy me but I let it go.

She doesn't have any other friends except me and I feel sorry for her but it's getting to the point where I can't stand it any longer.

What's wrong with her?

N.K

Dear N.K,

Compulsive lying is a habit that eventually develops into a reflex.

It doesn't mean she's a bad person but friendships are based on trust and lying can definitely damage friendships beyond repair.

Compulsive lying is driven by a number of reasons with the most common being low self-esteem.

The individual feels the need to fabricate elements of themselves or their lives because of deep, ingrained feelings of inadequacy.

They create a fancy world to protect even themselves from the truth and it's quite sad.

It might also be attention-seeking behaviour as the lies usually increase in relation to the amount of attention or the response they wish to elicit.

The best thing you could do is to point out these ‘inaccuracies' to her as they happen so she becomes aware it's not a successful strategy for getting your attention.

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