Before you think that we’re a bunch of lying, cheating bastards trying to justify why we lie to our girlfriends, please hear us out first. All healthy relationships are built on lies. Well, not big lies, but the little ones you tell each other so that both you and your girlfriend can stay sane. Imagine having to tell her she was fat every time she asked you how she looked? Not exactly the conversation you’d want to have every morning. But where exactly should the lies end? We have psychologist, Nathan Chua of coaching and counseling website One Life Only, to help us navigate the convoluted road of honesty and deceit.
1) Keeping her happy
Reminding your girlfriend that she’s the most beautiful woman you’ve ever seen even if its statistically impossible never hurt anyone. Building up her self-confidence, especially when she feels like she looks like shit isn’t a bad thing to do. “It just depends on how you two communicate,” explains Chua. “It’s important for your partner to not feel judged especially if she’s predisposed to having esteem issues. The times when you should speak up about something like this is if it affects your relationship in a negative way. Telling your partner she’s getting fatter if you’re concerned about her health is a very responsible thing to do. Just consider what you’ll say and how it’ll affect her in the long run.”
Sometimes, we have to put on a braver face or a stronger façade when your partner needs a shoulder to lean on just make sure that your sacrifice is coming from the right place. “If you cannot say no, your yes means nothing,” says Chua. When you’re forced to do something, it really shows in your body language and tone of voice and your partner will notice this,” says Chua.
So while telling her that you aren’t tired from work and still want to go out for dinner even if taking a nap sounds pretty good right now is alright as long as you’re doing it out of love for her and not guilt. You might even earn some pogi points for lying!
This is probably one of the things you guys were waiting for. So if you do ever cheat, should you tell your partner or not? As you would guess, there are a lot of factors to consider before deciding whether you should tell her or not. “Most couples I’ve handled who have experienced cheating are usually left with huge emotional traumas after the experience. It’s a trauma for a reason and that’s why the feeling of distrust lasts so long. Both parties need to realize that they have to work on building trust with one another if they want the relationship to have a chance,” says Chua.
Cheating is also a lot more common than we would think. Now, it’s important to note that we’re not encouraging cheating, “but statistics show that there is a very small percentage of couples who are purely monogamous with one another—meaning that most people belonging in a relationship have cheated, whether it be sexual cheating or an emotional cheating,” explains Chua. Meaning that cheating isn’t the end-all-be-all for most couples and most relationships can succeed even though a partner has cheated on the other.
Technology has made cheating easier to do yet easier to catch. “In my experience dealing with couples, the other party will eventually find out that the other one’s cheating either by confession or the partner reading a suspicious text,” notes Chua. In the end, it’s still your prerogative whether you want to come clean or maybe find another way to break up with her and save her the heartbreak of knowing that you cheated.