Liar, Liar

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The brain is an incredible thing that I feel I will never fully understand, but many concepts will stick with me. One particular concept I think I will remember five years from now is the concept of pseudologia fantastica, or pathological lying. What makes this psychological concept so memorable and especially evident is because my roommate was a pathological liar. She essentially could not be honest about most things in her life and dug herself into a hole she couldn't get out of. I originally blamed this on her being inconsiderate, insecure and generally kind of crazy. However, I came to realize the more I talked to her about it - after she forcibly admitted many of her lies - that she really thought that was an appropriate way of handling things. Our brains are the best storytellers there are and her brain was moving at incredible speeds to make up all of the lies that she somehow had started to even believe herself because she was in such denial of the truth and this is how her brain coped with it. This also exhibits the concept of false memory formation, which was very common for her also. She didn't seem to have any control. Her brain was telling her that her lies were right and true and she had developed some sort of double life since this had been manifesting itself over her whole lifetime. While everyone else was hurt and confused by her lying tendencies, I used the knowledge I had about how the brain works psychologically and referred it to the inner workings of her brain, contributing it to fear or a need to hide the truth, although yhe lies are all based on an element of truth. This made it easier to understand that she was not doing any of this intentionally, that it is a mental illness, and that it was not just to certain people, but she lied to everyone. The brain is so incredibly complicated and capable of doing so many different things to different people and the concept of pathological lying is something that will stick with me for a long time.lying.jpg

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I have known a few people like this too... it is very frustrating!

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This page contains a single entry by nels6990 published on December 4, 2011 11:12 PM.

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