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Do alcoholics have a tendency to be pathological liars?

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βˆ™ 2014-04-18 19:47:51

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Yes, alcoholics, like all persons with an addiction, will frequently lie. It's functional, that is, it works, to support their addictive behaviour which they are sure you, and others would disapprove of, and give them a hard time about, and/or try to stop them indulging in. They rationalize that their lying is okay/acceptable/necessary because you are so controlling or unreasonalbe about their right to drink/drug/gamble/work etc. Their sophisticated rationalizations and false justifications enable them generally to be excellent liars, hard to catch them in their lies, which for the friend/family member leaves them feeling even more distressed by the betrayal of their trust because they were "duped" by the addict, and feel stupid, pathetic etc possibly for the "crime" of simply having trusted someone they love and used to know. An addict may even gloat over his/her skill in being able to con you, and rationalize further, that it was okay because you were so stupid as to fall for it.

I agree with my prior responder to this question that the lying is a feature of the "addictive personality" and that the person addicted, once sober, may deeply regret his/her lying and feel shame, even want to make it up to their victim, which, for the victim can be very confusing and/or lead them to be very suspicious of their addict's sincerity (with good reason!). I love a book called "The Addictive Personality" I think by Craig Nakken for helping me understand the "dual personality". I suggest that you be vigilante and do not trust anything your addict says that is likely to give them access to money or circumstances that will enable her/him to engage in their addictive behaviour. For example: The Con: "I just need $20 to buy a new tire! How could you possibly not understand that! You are just a control freak!" Their goal here may be to manipulate you with shame for possibly being what he/she accuses you of, a "control freak", and to manipulate with supposed urgency,(must have new tire for safety reasons). Possible Solution? Don't buy into the put-down (, addicts usually blame and don't own their bad behaviour too. His/her addiction is in control and he/she is colluding with it) Offer to buy the tire yourself and it is likely they will come up with another urgent request for money which I would not supply.

Your other likely source of lies are explanations for behavours ie. absences, missing money and items pawned etc. I do not recommended accusations (it is just bad form to me) but I do recommend sharing your reasons for not believing them and doing covert research and if you can catch her or him in the lie definitely confront them with the facts/proof and use this evidence for why you cannot trust them the next time. There can be an element of truth in these lies so be careful here too.

Finally, my advise is to hate the addiction, the drugs or the alcohol, not the person under their control. Love sometimes has to be tough however ( another book by Dr. James Dobson). Once a person is addicted I think it is necessary to accept the reality, that they will lie, steal, disappear, let you down etc. and protect yourself from acute disappointment/shock by having these realistic expectations. I suggest by planning that you could be disappointed you will feel prepared vs. shocked and have a back up plan and thus experience less pain when he/she let's you down.

I hope these thoughts are helpful to you in your relationship.


An Alcoholic or an addict is under the influence of a drug and the entire focus of their day to day existence is spent aquiring the drug recovering from the ueage and then ensuring there is more of the drug to stabilize them to avoid detox symptoms it should also be noted that while the addict or alcoholic is under the influence of their drug the ability to decypher honesty from dishonesty is gravely impacted as a result of their useage


Most alcoholics tend to lie, mostly to deny their level of addiction/dependance. Recognize that people who tend to be addictive personalities also tend to have very poor judgment and find new and exciting ways to reallys screw up their lives.


Any tendency toward aberrant behavior that is not part of that shared by the population at large is not directly associated with any dependency or addiction, aside from the effects of the addiction upon the individual. A person who suffers with an addiction is likely to develop patterns of behavior which are supportive of their addicted status due to the threat perceived by them of their supply of the addictive substance being interrupted, or their distorted view of their own life as 'normal'. Were these people to be not under the influence of the addiction, and removed from the effects of the addictive substance, their patterns of behavior would be as likely to evolve into the positive and productive models as anyone else. What has been observed, however, is the tendency of these individuals to have certain traits in common which, it is speculated, predispose them to an addiction; whereas, the majority of people do not appear to be so predisposed. This trait is usually referred to as an addictive personality.

Those persons exhibiting an addictive personality trait are seen to be more dependent in their interactions than others. This may be a form of deep-seated insecurity, as observed from a psychological standpoint; but, there has been evidence supporting the postulation that other factors are involved. Some of this points to a possible genetic link, some to a deficiency in certain neurotransmitters or their functioning, and some to possible allergic response. All of the ties to-and-from an addiction have not been thoroughly understood and mapped-out, which is why successful treatment is difficult, and a cure hasn't been found.

If you know someone with an addiction like alcohol, and that person is asked if they've had too much to drink, they'll most likely deny that they have; and, should you be speaking to them between 'tours', they may be telling you what would be, for someone else, the truth. The behavior they exhibit may be opposite of that expected, making them appear 'tipsy'. This is what the alcohol has done to them; and, no alcohol need be recently consumed for them to appear this way. In such a circumstance, they will be seen as lying.

If an alcoholic mishandles responsibilities, they are prone to trying to hide the fact. This can include lying. An alcoholic will lose track of time; and, when confronted with a question concerning time, they may not produce the correct answer. An alcoholic can often become confused, or can hallucinate; and then, those things which are said by them are seen as lies. When an alcoholic forgets, they may confabulate; and, again, we see a lie. If a person is a recovering alcoholic, and is in a long-standing period of recovery, some of their reasoning may return to normal; but, brain cells do not regenerate--- and they may always suffer from symptoms which can be misinterpreted as dishonesty. This does not, however, dismiss the notion of dishonesty: Some dishonest people are also alcoholics. And, some of these are liars.

2014-04-18 19:47:51
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Related Questions

What is the Sexual orientation of pathological liars?

There is no correlation between pathological liars and sexual orientation.

Do pathological liars lie to everyone or just some people?

there are two kinds of liars. compulsive liars and pathological liars. compulsive liars lie on impulse usually to make themselves seem more interesting. Pathological liars lie to anyone about anything and they actually believe themselves.

When do pathological liars tell the truth?

Pathological liars are those who tell lies at every given opportunity and it is a way of life for them. As such, pathological liars never tell the truth because they are incapable of doing so.

Are bipolar people pathological liars?

Some Bipolar people are pathological liars, but guess what? It has nothing to do with the fact that they are Bipolar. Being a pathological liar is not a symptom of Bipolar Disorder.

Is there treatment for pathological liars?

No not usually

Do pathological liars have feelings of guilt?


What is the difference between compulsive liars and pathological liars?

i love christian

Do pathological liars feel guilty when caught in a lie?

No, that's why they are called pathological.

Are pathological liars aware of their condition?

No, typically pathological liars are not not aware of the fact that they are lying constantly. And, often times they believe their own lies. However, we can't mix pathological liars with diagnosed disorder with a person who lies to protect himself/herself.

Can pathological liars fool their counselors?


Do pathological liars have a touch of schizophrenia?


Who are pathological liars?

Pathological liars lies on a regular basis and is unable to control their lying despite of foreseeing inevitable negative consequences or ultimate disclosure of the lie.

Do pathological liars fall in love?

NO, Not in a million years!

What is the medical term for compulsive liars?

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Do pathological liars financially sponge from others?


Are pathological liars very charming?

psuedo, somewhat

What are the reasons that pathological liars lie?

There are many reasons why pathological liars lie including having no reason at all. These are people who lie in a convincing manner and find comfort in lying.

Do pathological liars try to return to a previous relationship if the present one starts to go wrong?

Individuals may tend to do that in general - pathological liars really have no bearing on the situation. Where a pathological liar is concerned it totally depends on the individual themselves.

Are pathological liars usually unfaithful to their spouses?

Not all pathological liars are unfaithful. The question is: Do you think the pathilogical liar cheated on the spouse? Well, if you asked the pathological liar if they cheated on their spouse and they said no. Then they did, Because they are Pathological liars. Which means they cant help but to lie. But, if they said they didn't cheat on their spouse before you asked them? It could mean that they are not lieing. Its a catch twenty-two. They best way to figure that one out is to ask yourself, "Can I or should I trust a pathological liar?"

Are pathological liars capable of really loving someone?

Hello. Yes, they are.

Are all pathological liars narcissistic?

Yes... some are even SOCIOPATHIC

What signs are there for pathological liars?

they lie so easily that you believe them and they immediately answer

How do you beat pathological liars at their own game?

You lie to them every chance you get!

Do alcoholics have a tendency to lie?

It's true, alcoholics have a tendency to lie. Because their main concern in life is drinking alcohol, anything else that might get in the way, such as honesty, will usually be sacrificed.

What is a propulsive Liar?

Compulsive liars are people who are unable to keep from telling lies, as opposed to pathological liars who lie out of convenience.