I think if you asked 100 people how important honesty is to them in their relationships—especially romantic relationships—99 would probably say, “very important.”
I think that’s why we’re shocked when a scandal like the one involving Tiger Woods comes to light. Not only do we feel duped about his true character, we feel horrible at the way he deceived his wife.
Wives can deceive too. In my family we have an old scandal involving my paternal grandparents, now both dead. Some time in the early 1940s my grandmother married and bore a son. But the marriage didn’t last, and she divorced. Not only was divorce uncommon in the 1940s, it was unacceptable, so when she met my grandfather, she didn’t tell him about the previous marriage, the divorce, or ever her son. She passed him off as her sister’s child. It wasn’t until after they married that my grandfather learned the truth. Sadly but not surprisingly, that marriage didn’t last long either, but it did produce my father and another uncle. My grandmother went on to marry twice more.
I wonder how many marriages can withstand deceptions like these. I wonder if love really can conquer all or if a relationship founded on a lie is doomed to defeat. People always ask where I get my ideas, and it’s through asking questions like these story ideas come. In my June release, THE MAKING OF A DUCHESS, the hero, Julien, and heroine, Sarah, meet and fall in love under false pretenses. Is Julien who he says he is or is he really a spy for the French? Sarah isn’t who she says she is, but when she finally reveals the truth, can he trust her?
I don’t think most of us have to worry our mate is a spy or hiding a secret life, but we make decisions every day whether to hide this or fib about that. What do you think? Is honesty the best policy or do a few white lies equal a happier union?