Harlequin Survey Reveals Americans Welcome Little White Lies

Posted on February 1, 2008

Harlequin Romance Report 2008Is honesty always the best policy? No, not always says a new study from Harlequin. According to the 2008 Harlequin Romance Report, the majority of American men (61%) have lied when their significant other asked the dreaded "Do I look fat in this?" According to 63% of Americans, white lies are an acceptable and even welcome part of any relationship, despite the fact that trust and honesty were ranked as the values that mattered most to both men (41%) and women (51%) in relationships.

"Americans want to have trust in their relationships, but sometimes they'd rather have that trust broken," said Marleah Stout, Senior Public Relations Manager, Harlequin Enterprises Ltd. "We want honesty in our relationships, but only if it doesn't offend or contradict our own self-image. We want to know that when it comes to the big things like infidelity, finances, or relationship problems our partners are being honest and truthful. But where physical appearance, annoying habits and personal preferences are concerned we accept, and often expect, to be lied to."

Harlequin analyzed the data to look at when Americans believe lies are acceptable versus when honesty is the best policy. They also found some interesting relationship trends.
  • Fifty-three percent of men and 54% of women have researched a potential date or significant other online
  • Forty-five percent of men and 55% of women confessed to having planned to bump into someone on purpose in hopes of it leading to a date
  • Forty-one percent of men and 45% of women would confess flirting with someone else to their significant other but only 16% of men and 18% of women would confess to sending a sexually explicit email/text/instant message to someone else
  • Forty-six percent of men and 52% of women felt it is ok to lie to get out of plans they had already made
  • Eighty-one percent of men still have pictures and mementos from and of their ex(s)
  • Sixty-five percent of men and 56% of women agree with interoffice romances
  • Seventy-six percent of American men and 79% of American women say that they have never regretted a confession they have made
  • Sixty-two percent of men and 69% of women say that they confess their secrets to friends while only 39% of men and 46% of women confess their secrets to significant others
  • Photo: Harlequin

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