Pathological liars know they are lying

Pinocchio Syndrome: Pathological Liars

Last update: September 27, 2016

The Pinocchio syndrome is known in psychiatry as "pathological lying" or "mythomania". Some researchers of the human mind claim that this pathology is characterized by the inevitable compulsion to lie.

When we observe someone in adulthood fill their life with lies and deceit, we are facing a serious problem.

Some people lie all the time for certain benefits, but pathological liars lie without knowing why. Your lies are spontaneous and unplanned. Once they succumb to this dynamic of deception and dishonesty, they don't seem to be able to stop. Sometimes they even keep their lies up for years. The pathological liars know they are lying, but they fail to stop themselves. In the end, they believe their own fairy tales.

How to spot a pathological liar

  • The stories they tell are not completely delusional, nor are they completely true. They tend to have a grain of truth.
  • The tendency to lie is constant because it is a personality trait that does not depend on external situations or their social environment.
  • Their stories and lies mostly serve to put the liar in a positive and beneficial light.
  • The compulsive liar really believes that this is exactly how the invented events took place. They consistently deny that these events are fantasies that sprang from their minds.

Mythomania is not fatal, but it is far from harmless. This disease has side effects on many different levels. In the social environment, the mythomaniac is likely to lose his credibility and is so often labeled as a "storyteller". Within the family, he is seen as a controversial person and one who should not be trusted. Acquaintances and friends tend to distance themselves or the person is excluded from the group.

The only treatment for people with this type of syndrome is psychotherapy. However, to date there are no studies in this area that could confirm a definitive healing of the patient.