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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 10643
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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My wife and I are going through a contentious divorce. One

Customer Question

My wife and I are going through a contentious divorce. One thing that is complicating matters is her lying. She and her friends have submitted literally dozens of declarations throughout the case that are full of deception.
It is virtually impossible for me to address all the lies because of the way they are presented. For example, a single sentence will contain multiple types of deception. She'll misrepresent opinion as fact, conceal relevant facts, and then make a false conclusion based on her misrepresentation all in one sentence.
My ex-wife will then draft similar declarations for her friends to sign.
Obviously, the judge does not have time to read my responses that dissect each and every sentence to show their dishonesty. So far, the judge has dismissed these declarations because they don't include any evidence, but I'm afraid the cumulative effect will count against me.
I've done a lot of research on the various types of deception but have not found a good way to sum up this type of strategy.
What I'm looking for is an explanation, maybe a few sentences in length, that will summarize what they are doing. I have chosen the mental health category here because I believe mental health professionals are versed in spotting blended deception and can give me an example or two.
Thank you in advance.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 4 years ago.
DoctorZ :

Hello I believe I can help you with your concerns

DoctorZ :

I am sorry that you are going through this. Divorce is usually a tough process, but it appears that your wife is making extremely more difficult for you

DoctorZ :

The good news is that because the declarations are getting thrown out by the judge on a routine basis from what you are telling me, that means the judge is probably annoyed with the tactics that your wife is employing and that goes in your favor

DoctorZ :

In my opinion I do not believe that her level of deception is sophisticated and most likely the judge is seeing right through it

DoctorZ :

Her strategy is basically to report one lie and have her friends back up the lie with pseudo-support. So she is using her friend's declarations as collateral information of the original lie, but this is a flawed tactic because collateral information has to come from a neutral source to be considered relevant to the judge.

DoctorZ :

In legal terms what she is doing by using her friends is hearsay most likely, which is why the judge dismissed the declerations

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thank you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
You are right that she is not sophisticated enough to completely fool the judge but I believe he may start thinking "where there's smoke, there's fire". Also, I'm not inclined to leave this to chance, which is why I'd like to "clue" him in on her strategy.
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 4 years ago.
No worries I understand your concern. Her deception is very similar to circular reasoning fallacy...for example "See your honor I told you he said he was going to hurt me (lie) because my friends also say that he wanted to hurt me (lie)." It is stating a lie and then using another lie to confirm it, hence circular reasoning fallacy.
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 4 years ago.
In addition you can mention to the judge that her friends are bias against you and that their statements should not be taken at face value
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes. That is exactly what she is doing. I like the circular reasoning explanation.

Expert:  Dr. Z replied 4 years ago.
No problem, I am familiar with the law as a forensic psychologist, so I understood how the courtroom process works and I have seen this type of deception before. Is there anything else I can help you with or answer for you?
Dr. Z and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thank you. I think I can expand on this and give the judge a good reason to continue dismissing the bogus declarations.
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 4 years ago.
I am happy to help out, if you have any other questions or concerns please feel free to ask. I hope I provided you with excellent service today. Good luck and I hope everything works out for you regarding this divorce proceeding.