Whether they are small, innocent half truths, or something more serious, a husband's lies can create distrust and contempt--and spoil a relationship. If you believe that your husband has something to hide, examining his body language, making eye contact and asking for details can alert you to holes in his story. Stop listening to what he's saying and start looking for clues that he's not being entirely truthful. You can then ask him for the truth, and work through your trust issues together.
Watch his facial expressions when he's telling his story. When a liar is telling a lie, he knows that he should look enthusiastic. He may form surprise with his mouth, without reflecting the surprise in his eyes. Or, watch for facial expressions that don't match body language, like a person who bangs the table angrily without an angry expression, Paul Ekman, professor of psychology at the University of California at San Francisco, tells "Time" magazine. This shows a calculated attempt to deceive you, and proves that not only is he a liar, but he's also a bad actor.
Ask for details about his story. If he tells you that he was working late, ask what project he was working on and who he was working with. A liar may not have predetermined the questions that you'll ask, and may stumble over the answers. Avoid asking questions in an accusatory way. Your husband may suspect your mistrust, and refuse to give you any answers to retaliate.
Watch his eyes as he talks. A good liar will be careful in the way that he presents himself, especially if he knows that you're suspicious. Instead of avoiding your eyes, a liar may be too calculated in making prolonged eye contact, according to author Paul Ekman's book, "Telling Lies: Clues to Deceit in the Marketplace, Politics, and Marriage." A liar doesn't want to get caught, so he may overdo his performance to maintain his innocence.
Compare story details. Ask him to repeat his story and compare the details with the first time he told it. If the first time around, he told you he stayed late because his boss asked him to, and the next time he notes that he stayed late because he volunteered, you may have caught him in a lie, suggests Elisabeth Eaves, writing for Forbes.com. Listen carefully to both version of the stories to identify inconsistencies.
- "Time": Behavior: The Fine Art of Catching Liars
- "Telling Lies: Clues to Deceit in the Marketplace, Politics, and Marriage"; Paul Ekman.
- Forbes.com: 10 Ways To Tell If Someone Is Lying To You
Kay Ireland specializes in health, fitness and lifestyle topics. She is a support worker in the neonatal intensive care and antepartum units of her local hospital and recently became a certified group fitness instructor.