Woman: Does this make me look fat?
What is the truth? Is there a lie?
Is there truth? It's a complicated situation. The woman's question might not be only what it specifically asks. The man's answer might only answer the question he perceived that she was really asking. Or he might just be answering by reflex.
The problem is that we cannot tap into reality through our words with 100% fidelity.
Consider the words: "I love you." Do the words cause the reality or does the reality cause the words? The real answer is that neither is the case. It is possible to love with those words. One could say the words in the desperate hope that they are true. One could straight up lie about it. One could love but feel incapable of saying the words.
Sometimes it's important to say the words. Sometimes it's important for the reality to be there. But the words and the reality do not have any connection whatsoever except in the mind of the speaker and of the listener.
We deal with this by cutting up the words. Love, love, luv, <3, heart, lurve, and l-bomb are not all the same thing. But only because we're talking about different things. What we talk about and what is about us are as different as schooling and education.
I need people to trust me, to trust in me, and to be trusted by me. I also need people to express trust and trustworthiness. I know that they are different and I listen for them differently.
I will try one more way of talking about this because it still feels so muddled.
I stand at bus stops and sometimes say, "Here's the bus!" Sometimes I say that and the bus is in front of me. Sometimes I say that and the bus is not. Sometimes I say that and the bus then pulls up. Sometimes I forget to say it and the bus arrives anyway. Sometimes I just need to hear that the bus has arrived. Sometimes I just need to get on the bus. Sometimes I need the reminder that the bus is here so that I can get on the bus.
Furthermore, sometimes I just walk around saying, "Here's the bus!"