Copyright © 2013 by Chrisanna Northrup, Pepper Schwartz, and James Witte.Published by Harmony, an Imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc.The Normal Bar is the world's most extensive survey on romantic relationships, polling over 100,000 people and collecting over 1 million data points.
Whether this emotional deception is a cause or an effect of the overall unhappiness, it makes it very difficult to fix the relationship.
The surprising finding, however, is that 48% of extremely happy partners also lie about their feelings.
The 27% who never lie may be righteous, but they can also be cruelly frank.
Men and women who shade the truth may be more loving and protective.
We found that 43% of women lie about how they feel about their partner’s sexual performance, compared to just 28% of men.
That’s probably not because women are better lovers but, rather, because they feel a greater need to protect their partner’s feelings.
When a man feels insecure, he may have difficulty getting an erection, so it’s in his partner’s—as well as his—interest to boost his sexual self-esteem.
The bad news here is that some honest communication has to take place; otherwise, nothing is likely to improve.
On the other hand, nearly half of men suspect their partners, too.
Both men and women believe that their partners will hide unpleasant truths, and that they may have to dig to find out what is really going on. Nearly three-quarters of our respondents (75% of men and 71% of women) said they lie to their partners to one degree or another.