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fremen_warrior's avatar

Ever sound like you're guilty,when you're actually innocent?

Asked by fremen_warrior (5447 points ) February 6th, 2013

Do you ever find yourself sounding guilty, despite not having done anything wrong? On a few occasions the fear of someone thinking I did something in a particular situation, actually made me sound as if I were lying, and practically convinced them that I did something I really hadn’t done (and trying to explain yourself from that point onwards just makes you look even more guilty)... Have you ever had that happen to you? Any ideas on why this happens? To me, sometimes, it feels like – instead of working to preserve itself – the mind wants to be ‘endangered’. Thoughts?

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27 Answers

Yetanotheruser's avatar

Every time my wife accuses me of something, the more I try to explain I did not do it, the more she is convinced I did!

El_Cadejo's avatar

A lot with my fiance and my sister. Not with important things but when I get accused of being the one who committed some sort of prank or trivial matter like that I don’t know what it is but I can’t for the life of me keep a straight face even if I had absolutely nothing to do with the incident.

kitszu's avatar

I can’t sell myself for the going rate of pussy. (Sorry if my language offends anyone.)

I feel guilty sometimes even when I had absolutely nothing to do with the situation, so I act guilty.

Kayak8's avatar

I have often felt this way. Thanks for asking the question, I can’t wait to see the answers!

The_Idler's avatar

Actually, the double-bluff is my favourite tool for social engineering, so I often do this purposely.
Usually just for fun.

Of course, it generally works best when someone already suspects something, and you want them to believe it. Tell them the opposite, but make it sound subtly like a lie. I think this works, because the other person feels intelligent for ‘detecting’ your ‘lie’, and that reinforces their acceptance of that idea.

Another advantage, is that people rarely detect the ‘real’ lies you might have to make, because they become accustomed to the (personally contrived) ‘tell’ you use, when making the ‘fake’ lies.

Crumpet's avatar

Yeah I always do this. It’s like a part of my brain hates me, and wants to try and make a fool out of me on purpose. For instance, I have been able to buy alcohol legally for 5 years, but when it comes to the transaction I always act guilty like I’m underage and using a fake ID and i have mo idea why!

ucme's avatar

If ever the wife accuses me of some trivial little thing & I smile, that’s my fucking fate sealed.

Bellatrix's avatar

Oh yes! It doesn’t happen as often as it once did because I am less tough on myself. I think when it does happen it’s because I have such high expectations of myself that if anyone questions what I have done I feel guilty that I didn’t do enough or perform well enough.

cookieman's avatar

This happened to me recently. My wife suspected I did something stupid, which I hadn’t, but my goofy face said otherwise. Then my daughter piled on and they’re both teasing me. I did such a poor job acquitting myself, I finally admitted that I did, just to shut them up – despite having not really done it. o-O

My wife worked with the police for a lot of years and developed a healthy mistrust of them. Now, if she sees one (on foot or especially when driving), she acts so cagey and suspicious – despite having done nothing – I swear she’s gonna get herself arrested for nothing one of these days.

Earthgirl's avatar

I have been there, definitely. I hate confrontation and so especially if someone is angry with me I get awkward at expressing myself and uncomfortable. That sometimes makes it seem as if I’m lying. I think you answered your own question a little bit but not at the end where you had a complicated theory about the mind wanting to be “endangered”. That doesn’t sound right to me. It’s the fear that does it.
You say “On a few occasions the fear of someone thinking I did something in a particular situation, actually made me sound as if I were lying”

For the same reason people who are telling the truth can fail lie detector tests.Maybe it’s the memory of being a helpless child and being called on the carpet by a parent teacher or other authority figure. That fear never goes away completely, it sits inside of us like some sort of residual insecurity waiting to be reawakened.

Pachy's avatar

I remember once telling a girlfriend about a ruckus that had occurred between two people in a movie lobby the weekend before, and I used the words “we witnessed,” meaning I and others. She took that to mean I had been with a date. I hadn’t, I’d been alone, but the more I tried to explain what I had actually meant, the more she became convinced I was lying and the guiltier I felt.

Coloma's avatar

I am not prone to neurotic guilt at all, but…I have had a lifelong issue, ( for lack of a better word ) of feeling people don’t believe me when I tell them I am sick. Mostly employers.
I am not the type to play up or try to sound extra pathetic when I am sick, and I can be dying and you will not really hear it in my voice. I could be really, really, sick and not sound sick. I always hate it when I say I am sick and people say ” well you don’t SOUND very sick.”

Sure, obviously if I have a bad cold or flu you can hear it some in my voice but in general I have an energy about me that belies how sick I really feel a lot of the time.
I mask it well and this has always annoyed me to no end over the years.
Sorry I don’t sound convincingly pathetic enough. lol

ScottyMcGeester's avatar

Yea, if it’s something serious like the police needs to check things I’m like, “Shit, I didn’t do anything. I didn’t do anything. Look all you want.”

If it’s something much less serious between friends, I tend to just laugh sometimes. I can’t help but do it even though I’m innocent. They’re like, “Why are you laughing? You’re lying!” “No, I’m not! I seriously didn’t do it!”

jerv's avatar

Often enough that I now “admit” guilt in such an over-the-top fashion that they either are convinced I’m innocent or just get so taken off-guard that their brain freezes.

KNOWITALL's avatar

All the time, I blame Catholic guilt. :)

wundayatta's avatar

Sometimes I will act guilty when I’m not simply to see if a person will believe it. I think it’s ridiculous to accuse someone of something when you don’t know if they did or didn’t do it. I don’t like being accused of things I didn’t do, so since I believe they’ve already convicted me in their minds, I’ll play along. It just shows they don’t know me.

Eventually, they’ll figure out the truth, or they aren’t worth knowing.

I try not to accuse people of lying. I don’t want them to deny it. I just act as if my version is the true version and go from there. Like with my kids, I’m not going to ask my son if he practiced if I know he didn’t. I’ll just ask him to practice. If he tells me he already did, I’ll tell him to do it again. I do not want to be in the position of calling someone a liar. I don’t want to discuss that. I want to move on to what we do next. It is a stupid and fruitless argument.

So if someone calls me a liar, I’ll agree. Because I am not going to argue about that. I know what I know. If you don’t know the same thing and you have access to the same data, there’s something wrong with the way you process data, and I can’t help you with that.

burntbonez's avatar

I am the soul of innocence. All the time. Even when guilty.

Seriously. I have a face that people just believe. I could have gotten away with just about anything I wanted. I take after my father. Who actually did seem to get away with anything he wanted.

I would have killed (almost) to get someone to accuse me of something bad, or to be thought capable of doing something, but no one ever accused me of doing something I didn’t do outside of the girl in fifth grade who placed a quarter in her desk right next to my hand to see if I would take it and when I did, she yelled and screamed, except, of course, I had actually taken it.

Even so, the teacher didn’t believe the girl, and so she got in trouble. I gave her the quarter back on the street after school, after she had been sent to the principal’s office. If only I’d known of the idea of karma back then. But it gave me no satisfaction.

I know the world isn’t fair. But I still badly want it to be fair. Maybe that’s one of the many reasons why I don’t trust my ability to judge women. But I digress.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@burntbonez I have that face, too, people tell me everything in ‘real world.”

burntbonez's avatar

@KNOWITALL That’s interesting. People believe me. But you they want to confide in. As if you’ll keep their secrets. Do you?

KNOWITALL's avatar

@burntbonez Yeah, I’m good with secrets, people just trust me for some reason. People start conversations standing in lines, too, it gets a little weird sometimes tbh.

Sometimes it’s difficult in the work environment though because my manager wants me to tell her if it’s work-related, so we have ‘back porch’ conversations (that means they’re private.)

TheobromosHumper's avatar

It’s funny. I have a weird smile that I wear most of the time. Enigmatic. People don’t know what to make of it, so they aren’t sure if I’m telling the truth or lying. Keeps people off balance, which they seem to like.

I’ve thought of trying to change it, but it’s just my natural expression, and if people think it means something, that’s on them. If they want to talk to me because I’m intriguing, should I try to push them away? Not in my business. Still, I’d have to say people do trust me but they don’t trust me, if you know what I mean, and they are always trying to figure me out.

Shippy's avatar

Yeah, like I feel like everything is my fault. Same feeling.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

I used to paint myself in a corner in this manner. The more I said I didn’t, the more it made it look like a desperate lie on my part. Then I learned a better way to cope – by going all sarcastic and saying, “oh, yeah, I totally did that, because I really wanted you to be mad at me, and I really wanted to bring all this grief down on myself . . .” Blah-blah, depending on the situation. It doesn’t always diffuse the situation, but often it does.

NostalgicChills's avatar

Ugh I do that all the time. It’s annoying.

Blondesjon's avatar

Every fucking moment of every fucking day.

belofty's avatar

The fear of failure brings those situations in life when we feel guilty for something we don’t do. Because we know or have belief that if we done that we made mistake. This is happens and mostly for those who don’t trust themselves and never spend time to analyze their strengths.

Simple tip to avoid this situation is to know more about yourself, what are your top strengths and weaknesses, how to sharpen or cash those strengths and how to eliminate weaknesses one by one. Be responsible and never ever blame others for your mistakes. You will get out of this situation easily.

kitszu's avatar

@belofty Wonderful point! =>“Simple tip to avoid this situation is to know more about yourself.”- “Know thyself”-Socrates

Self-examination is seldom easy. It’s kind of like “If you stare long enough into the Abyss, the Abyss eventually stares back at you.” Meaning, if you take a long hard look at yourself, you probably won’t like what you see (and what you see will be “the abyss”).

If you focus only on what you see (and you see negative/bad things) for too long, you will see no way out and it will absorb you. “You are the window through which you see the world; so keep yourself bright and clean.” (Please, someone tell me you get the connection I’m trying to make, lol.)

You look hard but fairly. You don’t judge yourself any worse than you would judge another. Most importantly, you understand that truth offers the opportunity for change. That is our only redemption from ourselves when we have decided we are damned.

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