When is it okay to lie? To strangers? To friends? To family? To yourself?
It never is really okay to lie, but we all do it to one degree or another. For example, in shop if the clerk asks “May I help you?” we might say “No thanks, just looking” because we don’t want to be bothered with the clerk although we know what we’re looking for. We might tell our friends that we can’t go out with them because we have something else to do when we are really so depressed that we want to curl up in a ball and just have a good cry. I lie to my family when I tell them I’m okay when I’m not; I wish we could spend time together. I lie to myself when I tell myself I’m okay when I know I’m not; I’m depressed and anxious and don’t want to see anyone or do anything, which is not quite normal.
Is it okay to lie in these ways? I don’t think it’s wrong because we are protecting those we love or just trying to get through something that is personal. Outright lies aren’t right. Deliberately lying to authorities or to strangers, families, or friends isn’t really right. But we are almost forced into lying to people sometimes to protect ourselves and our privacy. Lying to yourself is probably the most common lie. We deceive ourselves and try to believe something that just isn’t so. We do this all the time when we attempt to justify our behavior that we know has not been good. It’s just part of the human condition.