The Difference Between Why Men & Women Lie In Relationships Will Make You So, So Frustrated

by Candice Jalili
Stocksy/Emmanuel Hidalgo

I'm a firm believer in the whole "honesty is the best policy" way of life. Even when it's difficult, I generally tend to think being totally honest is the way to go in most situations. That being said, there are, of course, some situations where it's probably best to lie. For me, it's when the truth would not only be painful, but also (actually) unnecessary for the other person to know. And I sort of thought that was the general rule for everyone... until I came across this study. Apparently, there's a difference between why men and women lie and let's just say, that difference is pretty frustrating.

The study, conducted by GetSafe, surveyed more than 1,000 Americans about everything and anything having to do with secrets. And let me be clear here: "Keeping a secret" is simply just a sexier term for "lying." Even if you're not actively making something up to say to the person you're keeping a secret from, you're actively not telling them something that you should probably be telling them.

The most important thing to note is that the vast majority of respondents (83.2 percent, to be exact) agreed that, yes, it is OK to tell a lie at some point in life, with almost three in every four (74.4 percent) respondents agreeing that it is "sometimes appropriate" to tell a white lie. But who exactly are we lying to?

This is how many men and women have a secret that they're keeping from only one person.

The survey asked respondents if they have a secret that they're only keeping from one person, and I don't want to freak you out or anything, but lots of men and women said yes.

How many people constitute "lots?" Let me break it down for you numbers-style. Of the men surveyed, 44.4 percent of them admitted that they are actively keeping a secret from only one person. Of the ladies, a smaller 39.9 percent said the same.

Sucks to be that one person they're keeping the secret from, amiright?

But who is the one person that they're keeping a secret from?

This is where things get really disheartening.

The most common person people keep secrets from by far? Their significant others. Almost half of men (47.5 percent) and more than two in five women (42 percent) admitted that their significant other is the person whom they're keeping a secret from.

So much for your partner being your best friend, I guess.

What is the difference between why men and women lie?

In one of its most concerning findings, the study found a pretty big difference in the reasons why men and women lie.

You see, according to the study, most men tend to lie because it mostly benefits them. On the other hand, women were more likely to keep a secret from someone because it was in the best interest of the other person.

So, let me paint you a picture of what this means by giving you a couple examples. Men are more self-focused liars (they also tend to lie more frequently), so your boyfriend is more likely to lie to you about having plans Tuesday night to get out of going to that dinner you've been begging him to go to with your friends. On the flip side, women are more selfless liars, so your girlfriend is more likely to lie to you about how that shirt actually looks on you just to spare your feelings and make you feel better.

Of course, this obviously does not mean that every single man is selfishly keeping a secret from his significant other, and every woman is selflessly doing the same. There are plenty of men who are open books, and there are plenty of women who are, as well.

The moral of the story? Maybe just opt for honesty instead.

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