Compulsive Liar Symptoms

It's sometimes difficult to spot a compulsive liar. It often takes time to find out that a person has a problem in this area. Many compulsive liars develop a sophisticated technique that can fool the most skeptical of people. Compulsive liars also have no regrets or remorse about their lies, even though they often hurt other people. There are deep-seated reasons why they lie.

Inaccurate Portrayal

You might not immediately know when a person is lying to you. But eventually you will realize the things you are being told don’t accurately portray the person. What you have been told doesn’t add up. The person is different from the person she is attempting to portray. Compulsive liars often must lie to cover up earlier lies.

Low Self-Esteem

People who don’t feel comfortable with themselves often lie to feel bigger or more important. They actually have negative feelings about themselves and feel inferior to other people. So they make up stories to improve their sense of worthiness.

Fear and Habit

Fear is a common reason why many people become compulsive liars, according to Mental Health Matters 1. It could stem from something that happened to them when they were younger. They fear being punished if they tell the truth, and that fear could soon turn into a habit of lying. They might continue to lie when their false story has been discovered, trying to convince people the lie is really the truth.


An addiction to alcohol, drugs, gambling or other activities might make a person lie to get away with their addictions, according to LoveToKnow, an information site on addiction and recovery. They lie about where they are going to keep their addiction a secret or they lie about where they have been. This makes it easier for them to lie compulsively about anything they might encounter.


Some people start out lying compulsively after seeing someone else get away with it. They think they can achieve results that will benefit them if they just lie. It soon becomes a desire to lie in order to get what they want.

Bipolar Disorder or ADHD

Personality disorders can cause compulsive lying 1. People with bipolar disorder have mood swings that make them go from being deeply depressed to becoming hyperactive. During the manic phase of bipolar disorder, they develop impulsive behavior that makes it easier for them to lie to continue with their behavior and avoid real issues. People with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder also develop impulsive behavior that can lead to compulsive lying.