When is withholding the truth a sin?

I suppose the question is in the title.

I often find myself in situations where another person wants me to tell them everthing about a particular tsituation. and I don’t particularly feel like doing that. or there are aspects of the situation that will just make them angry and things they don’t need to know.

so I try to answer questions as specifically as possible, in order to leave out a good chunk of detail.

I still feel like I’m being dishonest though for some reason.

I have no idea why I always feel like I need to give the whole blunt, story to everyone though.

like how the friends that my mom doen’st like contacted me a couple weeks ago asking for my sports jersey back. but she asked me if he contacted me to wish me merry Christmas, which he hadn’t so I said he didn’t text me to wish me merry Christmas, which is true, but I know that she wants to know if he had contacted me at all. but if I tell her, she’ll just get angry, she already wanted me to change my phone number.

or my friends who are dating, if they have a fight and they both confide in me, they then always want to know what the other one said, which is uaully information I’d rather not repeat since it’s usually unflattering and generally said out of anger and frustration anyways.

so is it a sin for me to not mention parts of things, even if I know what the othe person is looking for and wants to know?

Sometimes withholding the truth can be a sin or it can be wisdom. You are right people do not need to always know the nitty-gritty details. Sometimes people need their delusions shattered by telling you the truth. If your conscience is convicting you of something, why not try listening to it?

If something is telling you it’s wrong, its wrong.
Trust your hut.
Guardian angels are real.

Rather than tell a lie why not just say to the person something like I dont feel like talking about it…or I dont wish to discuss it…why not have a few generic phrases like that at the ready and when you find yourself in a situation where you need to stop someone trying to dig for info that you don’t want to talk about you will have a ready made answer to give them

“Discretion is the Better Part of Valor.” It is something we tend to learn over time from innate wisdom or experience. Try to never get into the middle of “friendly disputes.” Become a fountain of confidentiality. Be like the Three Monkeys
hear no evil
see no evil
speak no evil

Difficult and hard at times…yes. Peace.

You may be assuming that the questioner wants the entire unabridged version of events. Most people don’t. When people give me the story of their life when all I asked was “did you see x over the holidays” - I tune out. As simple yes or no is fine.

You don’t have to tell people the whole story. Just be brief, and then move on.

If your friends try to tell you about their fight, say “I’m sorry, but it makes me uncomfortable to hear this, and it makes things awkward. Do you mind if we change the subject?”. You are under no obligation to listen to your friends complaining about each other.


I have found that there are some situations in which I choose not to burden others with details that could be hurtful, or stressful. Being prudent in your judgment in communicating facts is not avoiding the truth. I believe there is a difference in these decisions than withholding the truth in a manipulative manner.

People are not entitled to the sort of information you are giving as examples here. You have no obligation to share such details.

trust me, in these situations, they actually do want all those details.

so what, I tell my mom that the guy she hates actually texted me to ask for the sports jerseys, she’ll try to make me change my phone number. even though she only asked if he wished me a merry Christmas, but I know that she really wants to know if he’s contacted me, period

and my other friend always wanted to know every little thing her boyfriend said about her.

seriously, no thanks. but then I feel bad for not saying everything, for some reason even if I know it’ll just make the situation worse

Are you talking about random friends, or are you alluding to your parents?

both, different examples

I think there is a proverb in the Old Testament that deals specifically with something you said. I can’t remember where, but its a good thing to read.

In that case, you know the answer in spades.
How’s your quest for a Spiritual Director going?

Good at mind reading, are you?

Angel’s mom is abusive in the extreme. There is a long history of over-controlling. No, she can’t read minds. She’s living through an extreme situation due to her disability and her mother’s paranoia.
She needs to move out. She won’t.
She needs a Spiritual Director, she’s reluctant, no clue why. Probably because of mom.
She asks this about twice a month.

Thanks - missed the others. I thought this was a new one.

How old are you? If you are over 18, tell your mom to mind her own business. If you don’t, this will only get worse and you will have a life of unnecessary misery…
If you are under 18, well, she still gets to set the rules of with whom you can and cannot communicate.

As far as your friends dating, getting drawn in to either or both sides of that battle is never a good thing. Being an active third party in a dispute between 2 friends will certainly lead to no good. In my opinion, steer clear…

I would not tell her to tick her mother off or try to defy her. She lives in her mother’s home out of necessity, not out of desire. Yes, her mother is being overly protective of her, but we never know the whole situation or background. I would encourage her to be as independent as possible, but not to go too far in her quest. It is very hard to be under someone’s thumb all the time, but think of the yoke that Crist carried. Peace and prayers for all.

From re-reading all of the posts and listening to you, it appears to me that the mom is over-protective to an unhealthy level. The destructive behavior, to me is the mom’s over-protectiveness. That is what needs to be stopped. As well intentioned as the mom may be, she is hurting her own child. Advising the adult child to placate the mom is doing nothing but enabling the destructive behavior. Whether or not you upset the mom should not factor in the decision on how to handle this. Moving out in and of itself will not solve this issue. The only thing that will end the destructive behavior is for the daughter to stand up for herself and back down the mom.

It’s time to tick off the mom. After all, you would be helping her end her own destructive behavior, as well intentioned and misguided as it is.

That’s just my opinion on this situation.

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