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I am being lied to. What would you think?(20 Posts)
I have been really good friends with someone for getting on for 20 years but for the second time in as many months I know I am being told lies.
My friend split with her partner, who then moved out and although I have known her longer than probably anyone she didn't confide in me, in fact she blatantly lied about what was going on and only told the truth when she needed my help.
Today I have asked her to do something for me which she has refused, and was then very evasive about it. There was a distinctly frosty feeling after she declined my request even though it was no big deal - a simple yes I can or no I can't situation.
If she can't help me, she can't and I am fine with that (we have been friends for years there has been lots of favours on both sides equally) but what worries me is that I am being lied to again and I don't know how to move forward with this.
Perhaps she just wants a bit of privacy and doesn't need to confide anything? Especially if she's going through a difficult time.
I think - assuming you want to continue the friendship - you probably have to ask a few awkward questions and give her the opportunity to be honest. You say you've been really good friends for 20 years so it wouldn't be out of place to ask why she didn't talk to you about the split with the partner for example. What's changed? What else is she not telling you?
Cogito - I think I will have to have that awkward conversation, I just don't like having to have that sort of conversation. I was hoping we were on Logg1e's interpretation of events and I should just leave her to it for a while. Afterall her actions speak volumes.
I usually just put this sort of thing down to me being over intuitive but it has happened to many times recently for me to ignore it this time
What do you mean by "being over intuitive"? Why would that cause problems here?
I mean in the sense that I tend to pick up on things people don't even know they are they are thinking. I have a high level of empathy. I tend to imagine how I would feel in their shoes and try to support accordingly. This usually works well.
I feel wrong footed at the moment because my friend didn't tell me what was going on but I knew from the moment he left something was up with them but not what.
I think I'm going to leave it with her to see if she rings or texts or something, or she wants to organize to do something. Unless anyone has a better solution. I'm thinking that if she has that much going on it wouldn't be good to question her about her motives/lying at the moment.
Hi OP, When my exH and I were splitting up, I told absolutely no-one even though it was on the cards for months. I just couldn't cope with it and needed to handle it in my own way. Since then, certainly no-one has accused me of lying to them or been offended by it, they just felt sad that I didn't talk about it at the time but it was the only way I could handle. Maybe don't your judge your friend too harshly as you don't know what nightmare she is going through or what she is trying to hold together. People knew that I was stressed and wasn't myself but just assumed it was due to lack of sleep with young children etc. I hope things work out for you and your friend.
OP, I mean in the sense that I tend to pick up on things people don't even know they are they are thinking. I have a high level of empathy. I tend to imagine how I would feel in their shoes and try to support accordingly. This usually works well.
I'm afraid that would really irritate me, somebody who thought she may well know my thoughts and feelings better than me.
Thinking that something might be up (but not what) when a husband leaves his wife is not a great skill.
I think your plan is the best one, respect her privacy, give her space and leave the door open if you feel able to.
You have known this person for twenty odd years but you are not the person they turned to for help. Perhaps she was upset and struggling over her P leaving and didnt want to talk about it?
She the refused to do something for you for some reason. Clearly she felt she had to give you some reason why and didnt think that just a no was good enough for you.
I think you need to get over yourself if someone going through a rough time has only lied to you twice in 20 years.
Leepytime thank you for sharing your perspective. That is really helpful. It is entirely up to her how she handles this and who she talks to about what. I will respect that. Her recent attitude indicates that I have done something wrong but I have no idea what. She asked me not to discuss the situation unless we are in private so the children don't hear anything they shouldn't. I have respected that. She asked me not to tell another friend even though that has meant I have had to lie to the other friend and experience some very cringe worthy situations in which the partner was mentioned. I have also invited her out to do things, fed her and her children and generally tried to be as supportive as possible. This I will continue to do because I am that sort of person.
I'm very wary because I have been used in the past. At what point will I know i'm being taken for a fool?
OP, I think other posters are right to point out that maybe she chose not to let you know about the separation because it was really hard for her to handle at the time, and she probably didn't want people to start talking about her personal life.
It usually happens that when a friend goes through a hard patch, others talk about them, not always in a bad way, but they become the topic of conversation. I wouldn't feel comfortable with that either.
On the other hand, I understand your feelings of not being taken seriuosly as a friend, and her not reciprocating a favour is not a good sign either.
As you said, give her time and be patient with her. Try to disengage from circles where she's a common friend so you don't talk or hear about her from others. Leave things to cool down a bit and when she's stronger, you can resume the friendship from a cleaner slate.
So what you are saying Nero is that you think it is OK for me to pull back and let her be. I don't want to do this and her to think i 'm not there for her either. Thank you for the understanding the complexity of the situation.
I obviously haven't understood the complexity of the situation(!), perhaps because I'm not blessed by being overly intuitive. However. I think your plan of letting her be is a good plan. If you're worried about sending out the wrong message, let her know, "I'm here if you want to talk" (without any emotional blackmail).
OP: I wouldn't disengage from common friends or may lose your friends.
Re lying for her: tell the truth and say she has asked you not to discuss the matter.
Best wishes to you.
I'd let her know you want to be there for her if she needs it. Maybe a letter if you want to make it clear and to the point. Texts can sometimes sound a bit superficial so either talk to her or write to her. Tell her that you care about her and want to be there for her.
I'm in a similar situation at the moment with a friend who's grieving but didn't and doesn't want to share a lot with me at the moment. It's been hard because I want to help, but I had to let go and not expect her to come to me if she doesn't want to.
When I say disengage from common friends, I don't mean it forever, but just to clear the air a little bit. She probably knows you'll be put in a situation where people will ask you questions and that is probably making her feel uncomfortable at the moment.
"I mean in the sense that I tend to pick up on things people don't even know they are they are thinking. I have a high level of empathy. I tend to imagine how I would feel in their shoes and try to support accordingly. This usually works well."
This, OP, is called projecting.
You sound like hard work.
Back off, she clearly has enough on her plate without your meddling, well intended and over intuitive it might be.
The vote of confidence in my abilities as a friend is a great help (not) coffee in bed. Thanks Nero and others for your actually helpful comments.
Everyone is entitled to their privacy but there isn't enough info in your OP I think... what is the manner in which she lies? Is she being manipulative or controlling? Or is it evasive?
And if you are genuinely uncomfortable with the level of support you are giving you don't have to continue doing so. I agree with others, let her be. And if she is manipulative and controlling... all the more reason to maintain distance.
I kind of understand what you are going through though. I have a friend of decades and recently realized I have to maintain distance with her at times.
I really don't think you can accuse your friend of lying to you, just because she didn't tell you about what was going on with her partner, or pretended that everything was OK.
She didn't have to confide in you if she didn't want to, especially if you were pushing her for answers, as seems likely.
I don't know why she refused your recent request. But if the reason has to do with something she wants to keep private, again, I wouldn't describe it as lying.
From your other posts, it does seem as if sometimes you may be too intrusive in people's private affairs. Wait till they ask you for help. And don't take offence if they don't.
You will lose your friend if you interfere too much. I would ease off, let her know you are there for her but don't go around saying you know her more then she knows herself.
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