Lies Abusers Tell


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By Jenn Rockefeller

Abusive people build their whole world around lying. So much of what they tell everyone is a lie. They may describe specific events, but exactly what happened and exactly what was said at these events is greatly embellished. That’s the one thing to keep in mind as you move along your healing journey–abusers will lie.

And not just a little white lie, either. Abusers will tell tall tales, bordering on complete falsehoods and a total departure from what actually happened.

In the beginning, the abusers will come across as everything we hoped and dreamed for. They are charming, funny, and our perfect mate. Right?


These fantasies they tell us are built on a lie because they have a hidden agenda. These lies are used to ensnare us in their web of deceit; it is to keep us hooked. It all boils down to power and control. Abusers lie because they crave and must possess power and control over their victims.

Lies they tell

Abusers will tell us whatever they feel they must in order to gain power and control in a relationship. You may have heard some or all of these. You may even have heard some that are not on this list.

In no particular order, the following are just some of the lies abusers will tell:

1. I love you,
2. I’ve never felt this way about anyone before,
3. I’ll go to counseling,
4. I promise,
5. I’m sorry,
6. It’s your fault,
7. No one else would ever want you,
8. If you leave, I’ll kill myself and it’ll be your fault,
9. You’re so lazy,
10. You can’t do anything right,
11. Well, you’re not getting it from me so you must be getting it from someone else,
12. I’ve changed,
13. I never said that (Or, “You’re remembering it wrong”),
14. You’re so selfish,
15. You’re crazy! You must be off your meds again.

How the lies are used

Abusers use the above lies and phrases to gain the upper hand in a relationship. They will pour out these lies to help themselves in some way, whether it’s to avoid accountability (i.e. placing blame on someone else), for material gain, to boost their ego, to avoid embarrassment, or to gain the pity of others.

They also use these lies to justify their actions. For example, if they lose their temper, they may say, “Well, if she hadn’t done that, I wouldn’t have had to yell.” Abusers will also use these lies to gain our trust and love. Then, they will utter many of these lies to tear us down and make us doubt our confidence, our self-esteem, and our self-worth. In fact, these lies can cause us to doubt our whole existence. Abusers aim to strip us of all that makes us worthy in hopes of making us feel so low about ourselves that we stay in the relationship, or go back to them if we left.

After the relationship is over, many abusers will turn on the charm in attempts to win us back. They do so because they don’t want to give up the power and control. In fact, many abusers will go so far as to tell many of these lies to manipulate the masses into believing that we are the crazy and unstable ones. The abusers will tell anyone who they think will listen that we are not who we say we are and that we are actually the abusers. It’s truly sick and pathetic how far abusers will go to paint themselves as the victims and us as the abusers.

The lies abusers tell couldn’t be further from the truth. We know the truth. We know what really happened. Just keep living your truth and heal the way you need to.

If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, there is help. You can visit the Break the Silence website at www.breakthesilencedv.org or chat with one of our helpline advocates at 855-287-1777.

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