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This is going to end up being a couple of long posts, but just for tonight I have one question: what is lying?

My mom brought me up with a pretty strict definition of a lie. A lie is any kind of misinformation. So types of lie as based on a potential question of “what are you doing tonight?” Let’s assume that you’re a teenager living at home and your mother is away for the night.

1. “I’m staying home and watching tv” when actually you’re out at a friends’ and getting drunk.

2. “I’m watching tv”. True at the time, but you plan on going out with friends later.

3. “I’m staying home”. True, but you’re also having 50 friends over for a party.

To my mom, these are all lies. From the obvious “I’m at home” when you’re 10 miles away at a friend’s house drinking, to the more subtle lies of omission. Yes, you said you’re home, and yes, you are, but you know that you’re mother would want to know if you were having a party too.

There are so many types of lie. From the little white lies meant to make people feel good, or to not hurt their feelings to the big ones to cover up your own mistakes or misdoings.

What does lying mean to you?

Is a lie of omission really a lie? What if you honestly forgot an important detail or you didn’t think the person you were talking to would care?

Are white lies more harmful than we think?

I have a lot of thoughts about lying, mainly because of my mom’s definition being so strict and my desire to have an answer to every question. Something that I don’t have in this case. I plan on talking more about lies, and when they are “good”, but for now I’m interesting in definitions. What is a lie?