I’ve been lied to many times, and I’ve lied more than that. It’s an inevitable part of life. We lie to protect our loved ones, and we lie to protect ourselves. Unfortunately, lying is almost always never a good thing. If you wonder what to ask a guy to detect a lie, these six ways are how the experts do it.
Whenever I catch a SO lying to me, my first instinct is to get mad. How dare that jerkhole break my trust? How dare he think I’m not intelligent enough to discover the truth? Next thing you know, I’m accusing my guy of things he never did. Then I start listing down the things he actually did.
Never mind how crazy I sounded when I tried to interrogate them in a way I found fitting. Which was me yelling the question hoping he’d agree just by the sheer force of my vocal cords. Yep. I was crazy.
Anywaaaaay, just because I thought a guy lied to me did not mean I was right. Even if a guy admitted he lied, who’s to say they weren’t lying about lying just to get me to shut up? It’s a slippery slope and there is not much you can do, except wait for someone to invent an effective, hand-held lie detector.
So, what are your options? Do you take your guy’s word for it? Or do you find a safer alternative like the advice these FBI experts use when interrogating their suspects? [Read: How to stop lying to yourself and others around you]
Signs of lying and the questions you should ask…
Before you start investigating the “lie” you think your guy is telling you, try to find out if he really is lying first. Rather than go hard and start interrogating him, look for signs that confirm your suspicion. Discovering the truth comes later.
Now, before anything else, forget what you saw on “Lie to Me” and “The Mentalist.” The writers of those shows set up the lies, so they set up the cues as well. If you want to know how the real human lie detectors work, here’s what former FBI agent, Joe Navarro, and other experts do to pinpoint liars. For the purpose of this feature, we’ll apply it to how your SO would react.
#1 Don’t take nervousness as a sign of lying. Before you start accusing your boyfriend of lying, remember there are no concrete signs to confirm it. Like we said, forget what pop culture tells you about lie detecting. Non-verbal signs like fidgeting, shaking, and casting eyes downward do not completely confirm lying.
If your guy is doing this when you’re talking to him, it only shows that something is “off.” It’s possible he may be hiding something. It doesn’t mean he’s lying about something.
What to ask: What’s wrong? Please tell me so we can work on it together. [Read: 17 personal questions to ask a guy get the inside scoop]
#2 Use what you know about your guy. If you’ve been seeing each other for a while, you probably know the way your boyfriend acts when he’s not stressed out or nervous. Use this as a reference to check if he’s acting any differently when you ask him a probing question.
If he shows signs of unease and distress, something is probably wrong. If you’re not sure how he’s acting differently, try to talk to him about stress-free topics and gradually ask him about what you think he’s hiding. If he starts looking anxious, it’s time to find out what he’s really nervous about.
What to ask: Random questions about his day and what he’s planning to do. After a while, start questioning him about his lie using preliminary questions about the issue.
For example, if you think he is lying about what he did last night, ask him, “So what did you guys do when you went out last night?” He expects the question. He is not expecting what you’re about to ask next. [Read: So full of shit – How to handle a guy who’s full of it!]
#3 Ask him a few similar questions about your suspicions. According to Navarro, use this line of questioning to see if any of the words you’re using triggers a different reaction from all the other questions.
Let’s say you ask him about where he was last night, who he was with, and were there any girls there. If he shows similar reactions to the first two questions, but starts acting fidgety on the last question, he’s probably lying.
What to ask: Using the example above, here’s what you should ask to find out if he’s lying.
Were you at the bar like you said you were?
Were you with Joe, Gary, and Steve last night?
Were you with anyone else last night?
Were you with any girls last night?
Did you do anything with those girls last night?
See the progression? Don’t jump right in with your accusation. Ask about easy truths first before checking to see if he really is lying. If he looks anxious about one question and relieved with the next, you’ll know which topic to pursue from then on. [Read: 20 veiled signs your boyfriend is cheating already]
#4 Look for other nervous gestures, while asking about details. There many common gestures that signal a person is lying. They could cough, loosen their collar, shake themselves, or run their hands through their hair.
Watch out for these, especially if your guy keeps doing them while you’re asking questions. The more details you ask, the more likely he reacts this way. If he does, you’re on the right track.
What to ask: Continue to ask for more details and watch out for more nervous gestures.
#5 Do not pressure your boyfriend into answering. The more you aggressively push for an answer, the harder it is for you to check for signs of lying.
Make sure you’re in a private location, say your apartment or bedroom. Remove any forms of distraction like your smartphones. After that, politely ask them to tell you their side of the story. [Read: How to trust your boyfriend: 12 questions to help you decide]
What to ask: Tell him, “I feel something is not right, so please tell me exactly what you did last night. Just humor me, so we can move on from this discussion.”
#6 Tell them to tell you the story again backwards, but don’t be obvious about it. Ask subtle questions about the story that takes him through it from the end, back to the beginning.
What to ask: Wait, I’m a little confused. Can you tell it to me again and start from the last thing you said all the way back to how it began? If something changes in the story, go back to that part later and keep asking him about it—calmly and politely.
And ALWAYS REMEMBER, try not to act accusatory. Of course, you already show doubt once you start probing for questions, but it’s best not to let your anger or annoyance show through. Act as if you’re just curious about something and let your boyfriend lay it all out for you. [Read: 18 ingenious ways to surely catch a cheating partner]
This way, he won’t resent you for trying to accuse him, and you’ll still be able to get the truth out of him. Navarro says people feel more freedom to be honest when they feel their accuser is not judging them or acting superiorly. They are more likely to admit their mistakes and not turn to aggression or anger during questioning.
To put it simply, do not let your guy know that you are trying to catch him in a lie!
[Read: 13 giveaways to tell if someone is lying to your face]
Are you planning on using these tricks to find out if your guy is lying? If you’re wondering what to ask a guy, or how you can prod the truth out without raising suspicions, try these ways and you’ll have your results.
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