Back when I was still shorter than a regulation hockey net, I had an occasional issue with the truth. Although generally a decent kid, I periodically did things I shouldn’t (naturally), then made it exponentially worse by fibbing to try to extricate myself from the unpleasant situation I’d created.
Once when I was caught red-handed, my intricate lies having been systematically dismantled by my father (he’d have made an extraordinarily good cop), he told me this:
“Son, I want to be able to trust whatever you tell me, in any situation, always. But when you lie, and then tell lies to cover the first ones, you make it impossible for me to trust you.
No one expects you to never make a mistake, but a lie isn’t a mistake: it’s deliberate. A man takes ownership of his mistakes, every time. First you admit it, THEN you correct it.
Don’t ever forget that.”
And I haven’t.