I am a very bad liar. Not because of any particularly deep moral sense of right and wrong but because the effort of having to keep up pretences is more trouble than its worth. And I actually don't like being deceitful.
Having said that, I know there is a place for little white lies. Answers to "do you like my new hair cut" or "does my butt look big in this" sometimes require a little creative accounting when it comes to honesty.
I try my best never to lie to my husband. Firstly because I am not very convincing, secondly because he ALWAYS seems to know if I am not telling the full version of the truth and lastly because I don't believe deceit has any place in the relationship.
*Note: My husband is not nearly as averse as I am to little white lies or distorting the full version of truth and will happily NOT disclose to me exact amount he paid for his big screen super-duper fuel-injected new TV. "It wasn't expensive". or "It was a good deal". Yeah right buddy. It was probably ridiculously expensive!! He doesn't lie, he just chooses not to tell me everything. He feels that we operate on a need-to-know basis. He needs to know everything, and I need to know nothing.
Today we had a little incident at home. Max knocked over our brand new lampshade and it broke into pieces. Rose and I froze in horror. Our first thought was "Marko is going to FREAK OUT!" Marko is very, um, careful? protective? caring? anal? about his/our stuff. You can always buy a second hand car from Marko because you can be guaranteed it will be in excellent condition. No scratches, no broken door handles or sticky stains on the carpet. And it will still have all the original packaging. Marko is always moaning about how the kids ruin / break / scratch / damage everything. Sometimes when he is really cross and he wants me to have hateful thoughts about him, he says "I am the only one in this house that cares about our things" which is crap and annoying and only very slightly true. I also care about our stuff but I am not quite as anal.
Anyway, Max broke the new lampshade. We knew Marko would not be happy. Rose volunteered to take the fall but I said that I would do it. But I knew Marko would be able to tell immediately that I was lying if he saw my face, so I thought I would email him. Let him get over his pissed-offness before he got home. But then when it came to it, I couldn't do it. It would have been a lie to say that either myself or Rose had broken the lampshade and I don't want him to think that I would lie to him.
I decided to be deliberately vague so that I didn't lie but I also didn't get Max into trouble:
Me via email: "The one new lampshade in our bedroom is broken (kaput), knocked it over by accident, SORRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
I thought that was quite clever. I was just congratulating myself when I got his reply:
Him via email: "Who knocked it over?"
Me: "Does it matter?"
Him: "Yes. If it is was any of the children, you are covering up for them. If it was you, it was an accident"
Me: "It was an accident xx"
No reply. We will see what happens when he gets home tonight. Hopefully by then he has calmed down. I will have to distract him somehow....
So, after that loooooooooooooong intro - here is my question: Do you think it is ok to tell a little white lie? Would it have been ok for me to take the fall for Max? To pretend it was me who knocked over the lamp instead of Max? It really was an accident that it got knocked over. (He was swinging his lion around and the lion hit the lampshade and the lampshade toppled over. Could happen to anyone!)
Would that have been an acceptable little white lie or not? Is there such a thing as an acceptable white lie in a relationship?