"When I was 10 I learned I could make myself throw up, so I used this to get out of school for like two weeks.
My parents couldn't figure what was wrong with me because I didn't have a fever or anything. My aunt had the idea that I was allergic to red food dye because her grandson (my second cousin) was. I just kinda rolled with it, and so for years my house never had red Gatorade, strawberry Pop-Tarts, etc; I eventually told my parents I was faking it when I turned 20, they were not amused."
"In the interview for my current job, my boss told me he was a huge Arsenal fan (football team in the UK). I told him I was a season ticket holder and I go to every game (I rarely ever watch football).
3 months later and I get the job. The day after EVERY game he would ask me about last night's performance, asking me what I thought they could do better, etc.
After lying my way through the first conversation I actually started watching the games just so my lie wouldn't be uncovered. It got so bad I would get friends who went to the games to buy me match day scarves and programs which I would bring in the next day, and occasionally book days off when Arsenal was playing away.
After 7 months of keeping up this ridiculous lie (which required me to spend hours becoming an expert on a team I didn't care about) my boss took voluntary redundancy, and I slowly started fading out of football conversations in the office."
"When I was 13, I was playing World of Warcraft and someone asked me my age. 13 was so young so I lied and said I was 14, cause that meant I was so much more mature. Well, I kept playing 'WOW' with the same group of people, and 4 years later they thought I was 18.
Someone started asking me how my applications to college were going since I was that age. Being caught in the lie about my age I played along and asked for advice, which resulted in me actually putting in a college application to a university and I got in, as a high school junior!
So to keep up this lie about my age I now had to finish high school quickly so I could actually go to this university that accepted me. The great part is that I was able to do this by overloading my spring semester with online classes (yay Florida online high school). I managed to graduate high school a year early and went to university a year early to keep this lie going.
So here I am, at a university 1000 miles from my home state, finished my BS and am now doing a Master's Degree, all because 14 sounded way more mature than 13 on a freakin' video game."
"When I was a kid, for birthdays, my mom would always get us whatever cake we wanted (chocolate, vanilla, cookie, ice cream, etc). Well, one year (I was probably about 8 or 9), she got me an ice cream cake. I don't like ice cream cake AT ALL, it's not even cake!
Well, she was so happy that she 'had gotten my favorite cake and flavor right,' that I just went along with it.
Then next year, I got another ice cream cake - still didn't say anything, not wanting to hurt her feelings again. And again the year after that. This has been going on every year since and I'm now 30.
Only my wife knows that I don't like ice cream cake, so each year she secretly gets me a cookie cake for at home and we don't tell my mom."
"My wife thinks I have another kid. I don't.
When I was 16 my girlfriend got pregnant. It was a bit of an emotional rollercoaster for me, and it didn't end well. I was eventually told that she'd been cheating on me and ANOTHER guy was probably the dad, which was confirmed shortly after birth. I haven't spoken with the mother since I was 17 (I'm now 39).
A number of years later, a cute girl and I were a little out of it and trading stories about how terrible our lives were when I started talking about my ex who had been screwing around with me and who became pregnant. Wanting to embellish the story up a bit, I made up a lie about how the paternity test confirmed that it was mine, how she ran off back east to live with the baby when it was born (that part is kind of true, she did actually move east shortly after), and how I have no idea where my daughter is or how she is doing. The story garnered me all sorts of sympathy and got me laid, which was the goal.
Fast forward three more years and I married that girl. I've been married to her for 13 years now, and we have two kids together. She still thinks that I have a third kid out there somewhere and that someday, some young woman is going to come knocking at our front door looking for her long lost dad. And it gets even worse. My wife, thinking that she wanted to be honest with our children, told them that they have an 'older sister who they might get to meet someday.'
My young son mentioned this to MY mother, who predictably went bananas. My parents, of course, knew about the pregnancy, had just retained a lawyer when the baby was born and they knew about the paternity test, but they'd never actually SEEN the results. I'd received the confirmation myself and they never questioned it when I told them that the test showed that I wasn't the father.
Caught in a lie between my wife and my mother, I, of course, lied to my mother. I told her that the test was negative, but that the test had been done on the OTHER guy and verified HE wasn't the father - I was. I told her that I'd lied to her because I was a scared kid and that when she vanished, I thought it would just 'go away.'
My mother, of course, wanted to hire a private investigator to track my ex down and it was everything I could do to talk her out of it. I ended up having to get very forceful about it, telling her that she had no right to impose those kinds of changes in my life. It worked, and she backed off.
So, today my wife thinks I have a long lost kid, my mother thinks she has a lost grandchild, and half my family thinks I'm a terrible father for not tracking my child down, for lying to my parents, and for not 'being a father' about it."
"My friends and I were going to the movies but a few of them flaked, so we wanted to make them regret not coming. We made up a story where I met this Swedish girl visiting NYC and I got her number.
Eventually, we made a Facebook profile for this imaginary girl after we went on another 'date'. I just googled 'Swedish girl' and used a random picture for the profile picture.
The picture I used happened to be a singer-songwriter named Nina Nesbitt. I started looking up her music and I actually ended up loving it. I loved her music so much that I ended up becoming a big fan and seeing her in concert a few times. As a result, I got several pictures together with my 'date'.
To this day, my friends still believed this all happened because I ended up proving all my claims."
"When I was a kid, I had a school exam to take on a Wednesday. I had not studied for it and was too lazy to, so I told my mother that I was sick. She kept me home from school, and I screwed around and played video games and whatever.
Thursday rolls around, and I was still lazy and hadn't studied. I told my mother I was still sick, and I just wasn't able to go to school. She told me ok, but if I was sick again the next day, we were going to see a doctor. That was cool, I had intended to study that night for the exam anyway.
Friday comes, and yet again, my lazy-self hadn't studied. So, yet again, I'm way too sick to go to school. My mother says ok, pack up, we're going to the doctor. I thought, 'Whatever, we've got insurance and they'll just tell me I have the flu.' So, to the doctor, we went.
So, after a multitude of tests and stupid human tricks, I was diagnosed with appendicitis and scheduled to have my appendix removed. I argued and said that couldn't be the problem, and, of course, the doctor knew better. I was too far in at this point, and couldn't simply say: 'Sorry, mom. I was lying to get out of a stupid school test.'
So, here I am many years later with no appendix."
"I graduated from a decent, second tier law school at the height of the financial crisis, passed the bar and could not for the life of me get a job. I had a couple of document review jobs that didn't last long and then was unemployed for about 22 months (almost two years) despite applying for everything under the sun -- retail, dog walking, etc.
Finally, when I was weeks from losing my unemployment benefits, I got a temp job as a legal secretary.
It felt like a miracle. I hadn't paid rent in months, the electricity was only still on due a mistake by the electric company, my parents are long dead and I have no support system in terms of relatives or friends who I could ask for money (in fact at the time it seemed like every other person I knew was losing his/her job). I was so grateful to get that job, it saved my life (I was seriously close to ending up on the street, I had completely run out of options and was living in sheer terror).
So after a year of temping and feeling like the most grateful human on earth, they offered me a permanent position at a salary that seemed astronomically high compared to the $400/week that I made on unemployment (and I live by myself in one of the absolute highest cost of living cities in the country). Now it's five years later and I'm still working there, as a legal secretary.
The lie is that half my friends think I'm a lawyer. I don't feel like I actually lied to them about but I told them I got a job, and they said where, and I said, 'at a law firm,' which was true. They understandably assumed that I meant as a lawyer. I mean, I went to law school, got admitted to the bar, and worked in a law firm, what else would I be doing there? I just didn't have it in me to correct them.
My entire life is divided between people who know me as a legal secretary and people who think I am a lawyer. There are a couple of people (as in, 2 or 3) who know the truth: I graduated from law school, passed the bar and am working as a legal secretary. Not only do I not want the people who think I'm a lawyer to find out I'm a secretary, I also don't want the people who think I'm a secretary to find out that I studied to be a lawyer. It's just embarrassing that I spent all that money and time and hard work on law school to do a job that a high school graduate could do.
On top of that, I have law school loans to repay on a secretary's salary. My own brother who I love like crazy thinks I'm a lawyer and I know he's so proud of me and thinks it's so great that his sister is a fancy lawyer (we are of humble background).
I didn't lie on my resume and the HR department knows I studied to be a lawyer, and of course, like all HR departments, they told a bunch of people who had no need to know (mostly lawyers). They ask me about it and I just cringe from embarrassment, like I'm someone who couldn't handle working as a lawyer and went back to being a secretary, or like I did something very bad and got disbarred, or was just too stupid to get a real job. They say things to me like, 'Oh you're so much better off, being a lawyer sucks,' but they have no idea how much it's killing me to know that all the hard work I did in law school, studying for the bar, striving to improve my life, etc all came to a disastrous end, and how much debt I have that I will never be able to repay, and how much it's killing me to have this double life. The double life where I always have to try to remember who knows what and make sure those people who think opposite things don't meet and dreading what happens when one of my law school classmates turns up as co-counsel on one of my boss's cases."
"I once told people I had been bitten by a venomous snake to get out of work for a few days.
I had already called in sick a ton of times and just could not face them if I did it again. I am young and in good health, there is just no way even an old frail person is ill as much as I am calling in, so yes, snake bite. They knew I kept venomous snakes and I thought 'this is a great idea'.
Turns out they were fascinated and wanted to see so I had to wrap my foot up in a huge bandage and hobble around for weeks.
Luckily, I was moving to another job I actually didn't hate a few weeks after that. I didn't have to deform my own foot or actually let one of my venomous snakes bite me so that I would not get busted but I was not far off doing so!"
"I would lie about my mother's health and that I was doing enough to take care of her. She was going through early onset dementia and was able to feed herself if the food was in the house and seemed to make sense in most of her conversations. However, we could tell that something was not right.
I ignored it for a few years, visiting her less and less. If anyone asked I'd say she was doing okay. She did freelance work and that eventually dried up as she was unable to perform the tasks of her job and her old colleagues in the business retired. Then her best friend died of cancer, and her brother moved away. I'm her only child and she was alone.
The first time this came back on us was when she got into a car accident. No injuries, just a bunch of damage to a statue. We did the minimum amount of involvement and tried to block her driver's license renewal because she was stubborn and could not understand that her driving was dangerous.
Then she stopped going to the grocery store, taking showers, or removing the trash from her house.
My lie, then, was that visiting her once a week to go out for burgers and grocery shopping was 'doing all I could' to help her. Only my wife knew how bad things were getting. After seeing my mom I would sit in my car and cry for several minutes. That emotion would hit me at unexpected times; at work, while driving, on holidays. I was a wreck emotionally, I lost my job probably because of my behavior (short temper and a disillusionment with the importance the of the job). I withdrew from my family emotionally.
Then my mom called the cops on herself and was taken to the ER. The hospital had her for several hours before they found my number and called me. By then my mom had stopped making sense in conversations, was hallucinating about shadowy figures flying indoors or peering through windows, and was not sleeping more than an hour or two a day.
This is when the lie ended.
It took most of the next year to get her into a facility that we could afford. She is in a better spot, for now, I'm dealing with my emotions in therapy and think I'm in a better spot now too. But part of me wants that lie back. I just want to go on thinking that the mom I used to be able to talk to about anything was still there."
"In the UK there was meant to be an 'open call' for Harry Potter auditions, but due to the fiasco over the director of the first film, it never happened. However, I'd still sent my letter off as suggested by the TV show Blue Peter who announced it. I never heard back but for some reason, my 11-year-old brain was really mad at not getting a chance.
When I started secondary school, people kept telling me how much I looked like Harry Potter (the illustrated one the books showed, not Daniel Radcliffe, because at that point the news hadn't broken yet).
To this day I've no idea why I just went all in and told my school mates I'd gone all the way to the final auditions.
When Daniel Radcliffe was confirmed everyone asked me what he was like so I told them he was horrible lol (yeah, pre-pubescent me wasn't jealous at all). I kept that up all through secondary school until we left just because it was too embarrassing to admit otherwise
And no, I haven't met Daniel Radcliffe."
"In junior year of college, a friend asked me what my spring break plans were. I told her that I was going to Mexico. I had a bit of a reputation for fun-natured deceit, so she was dubious and I guess something in my tone didn't quite feel right to her.
Now, I really truly was going to Mexico with a mutual friend and his family, but I know an opportunity when I see one.
So for the next several minutes, I pretended that I was lying poorly about going to Mexico. She eventually left the conversation pretty sure that I was lying.
Later that night, I'm hanging out with the mutual friend and she approaches to ask whether we were really, truly, going to Mexico together. My buddy caught on immediately, acted confused, and assured her that he was just going with his family. She was now confident that I had been lying.
I spent the next several days until spring break keeping up my act, pretending that I was a terrible liar but only ever telling her the truth. I sent an email to most of our mutual friends saying, 'If [friend] asks what I'm doing over spring break, tell her I'm going to Mexico', expecting that one would 'betray' me by telling her about the email -- which indeed happened, that kind of thing.
In Mexico, my buddy and I took and sent her several pictures -- all of which looked entirely unlike Mexico. Like, me in the kitchenette of the hotel room wearing a bathing suit and a button down shirt, with my backpack conspicuously in the background. Or a picture of the both of us in the ocean, but taken from so far away that you could never tell it was us -- pictures that were engineered to look like we were halfway trying to keep up the ruse.
When we got back, in order to convince her that we truly did go to Mexico together, we offered to each independently answer really specific questions, like what did we do for lunch on the second day, etc. We answered MOST of them correctly, but with the occasional slip-up.
After weeks of confusion, she concluded that we had both watched some vacation movie and were reciting facts from that to get a consistent story.
Anyway, it's been two years now, and I'm locked in. I can't undo the lie. I have tried to eject by just telling her the truth, but I've been telling her the truth the whole time.
At this point, I'm resigned to knowing that no matter what I do, she will always be 90% sure we never went to Mexico.
"I was crossing the road and wasn't paying attention and almost got hit by a car. A guy behind me shouted: 'Look out idiot!'. I quickly hurried on to the second crossing which he caught up to me at. I was mortified and so at the second crossing, I reached under the pelican crossing button to feel for the rotating knob that blind people use to tell when to cross and just stared half at the ground to the left as if I was better positioning my head to tell where the cars were.
After we crossed he apologized saying 'I'm so sorry. I just called you an idiot I didn't realize you were blind.' I told him I just have some sight problems mainly with motion but he didn't need to worry about it.
Anytime I walk to that part of town I pretend to be partially blind walking down the street for fear of seeing him again.
I have yet to tell anyone, especially my actually (legally) blind dad."
"A couple years ago, I went to a bar in a town I didn't expect to be in very often, and I decided to don a Scottish accent and make up a back story for a fictitious version of myself.
Now, I doubt my accent would have fooled someone actually from Edinburgh, but by the end of the night, I had a group of Americans and one bemused Australian chatting with me about the things that make the US a strange place to visit from abroad. Shots were bought, back slaps given, and a good night had; I thought nothing else of it. Well, until I was dating a girl from the next town over, and she took me to her favorite bar - that bar.
We walked in, someone greeted my by my 'name', and I did the only thing I could do -- cheerfully donned my fraudulent accent, explained that my business trip had been indefinitely extended, and spent the next twenty minutes furtively explaining to my date that I wasn't a con man, just an ex-actor with terrible impulse control."