Lying is in 2 parts – suppressio veri and suggestio falsi. For those not very conversant with law, these are words which may sound like Greek or Latin, well it is!

Suppressio Veri is when you hide the truth, and suggestio falsi is when you actually tell a lie.

Let us put it this way. You are going for a 8am meeting…and the other person calls you at 7.50…you are still about 20 minutes away. What do you do? You say one of the following:

– the train was late

– too much traffic, did not expect to see so much traffic at 7.30am

– cannot find an auto

the real reason could be far far different. Maybe you got up late, maybe you stood talking to a friend, ….

these are suggestio falsi with regard to time.

Here we are talking money!

You are young and just started earning. You like to spend money but your parents are more in the Socialistic mode. What do you do?

Do you tell small lies?

Do you tell your mom that you spent Rs. 5000 for hair straightening? or tell her it was Rs. 1500? Knowing that 1500 will give her a mild heart attack, but at 5k she will die? or tell her that your phone costs Rs. 8000, while you actually paid Rs. 19,000?

these kind of lies are common between generations – why even between spouses! I know of one woman who will die if her husband told her that a purse he has bought for her costs Rs. 34,000. He told her ‘It is very expensive I paid Rs. 5000 for it’ . He actually bought it in Europe….:-). I know a friend who tells his father ‘Dad I get these J class tickets because of my mileage’ – he actually prefers that they fly Kingfisher J class (somebody picks them up as soon as his driver drops them off at the Mumbai airport and they are escorted to his sister in Chennai). His father was a CXO, but cannot accpet the fact that somebody would pay a 30% premium just to sit in the front seats!

I also know of kids lying to parents – so that parents do not ask for more money. I speak to a lot of people about money – and have heard about one mother who keeps telling her son ‘we have sacrificed so much for you…so now you need to spend on us’. This i hear is now not too rare. Most people underestimate the financial needs in old age. So if a 65 year old mother is expecting her son to spend lavishly on her – what happens when she is 84 and son is retired? Or when money gets tight?

Also heard of children lying to their parents – so that the parent does not feel ….’my son is doing so well…why does he not help my daughter’….Now funnily if a son is doing better than the daughter, the parent feels that the daughter in law did not deserve it’ – this is a doc’s version (honestly she is not a psycho analyst, but hey she is a gen physician!).

So like time lying, money lying is common too.

On the reverse side there are kids lying to their parents about their struggles too. Imagine earning Rs. 32 k  a month but struggling to pay bills, living pay check to pay check, paying the min for keeping a credit card going…..and also blowing money! Such kids have to tell their parents – I travel by train (auto is the minimum, girl friends can upgrade that to a taxi), my cell phone costs only Rs. 8000 (actual cost Rs. 25000)..just to sound a little responsible.

So when Dad/ Mom calls it is always “I am doing fine dad”. So what if Monday morning financial confessions are at my desk and it deals with:

– bounced cheques, bouncers, marriage loan, housing EMI, car Emi, latest bike costing Rs. 1.8 (sir I am entitled to ATLEAST that much), ……………..and not finding out how the various things are related.

RIP parts of Gen Y. Do not worry, we all do parts of it.


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  1. Subra,

    You seem to be agony aunt where money is concerned and in the process you see human fragility in all it glory!

    1. We too have lied to our parents when we were not doing well. I am also proud that we did not borrow a penny from them!

    2. Yes, I know some mothers who expect so much from their sons – I feel really bad for Indian men,,,, expectations are simply too burdensome. Again a case of parents – specially mothers not wanting to cut the apron strings. Sad.

    3. About spending money on unnecessary items – current generation amazes me!

  2. SAM,

    i share an awesome financial relationship with 5-6 people – if i say I want money, there is a good chance I can get a blank cheque. My dad is one of them (and hey i could write a nice big fat amount and it will go through too!!).

    i have not tested it though. Thank God. (I do not say touch wood for religious reasons).

    There are people who get into a bloody mess – and then when the parents want to step in, it is too late.

    I know parents who have led the kid to hell and the reverse too. This is just a warning post.

    Why I hear about these things is when a person says ‘i want financial planning help, I ask some amazingly embarrassing questions – like ‘have you stolen money’ 🙁 shocking is it not?

    i hope it helps them. It surely helps me while talking to them :-).

  3. I always thought you were simply exaggerating all these stuff until I happen to land in a coffee table meeting with some team mates!

    I was startled to know that a person pays 60% of his net pay as EMI to one car and two bikes. Other than that he pays rent, uses a high end internet connection, uses a low mileage ore-historic design bike to commute to office and has credit card full of debt!

    He was asking me to transfer 31 rupee to his bank account so that he can withdraw the remaining 69 rupee! OMG!

    Another person was laughing at me when I told him that the insurance premium I paid(term plan) will not get refunded! He called me a fool on the face – He told me to stop it and go for LIC endowment plan! I played my part well and said I will surely do consider it! Every one is an expert in finance these days it seems! 🙂

    Some get loan to construct house beyond budget. Some pay for every apple gadget available. Sensibility is lost in this generation!

  4. Hi,
    I dont agree that everyone from current generation is like that..
    There are people who brought up from rags to riches (not too much rich but above middle class) are still concerned about money and spend money wisely.

  5. “Sensibility is lost in this generation”
    I don’t know whether I qualify as “this” generation.
    I was spending 1/4th of my take home pay for the last 5 years.
    Rest was going into Term Insurance, Equity and reducing my home loan. Today at 33 my home is free of mortgage and I have more than 12 months of expenses as bank balance to survive, along with a health insurance.

    I have resigned from the shitty IT job I was in to take a 6 months break. And am confident that will get at least half the salary that I was getting earlier when I return to the job market.

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