What Is the Difference Between a Lie and a Fib?

A lie is a false statement that is said intentionally to a person to hide the truth that has harmful consequences, while a fib is a statement said about something unimportant or minor and does not have harmful consequences. However, in both cases, the truth is avoided.

A fib is often associated with childish tales when an older person has to conceal the truth because it is less important to a minor at that particular moment, according to TheFreeDictionary.com. The Free Dictionary further describes a fib as a false statement that has no malicious intentions. Dictionary.com simply defines a fib as a minor lie. Unlike a fib, most lies have negative consequences, such as legal, social, criminal and religious sanctions.

In some communities, children are told fibs about how babies are purchased in supermarkets by their parents. Such statements are told to hide the truth, but they do not have malicious intentions unlike lies. In most cases, people find it easier to forgive their friends, family or relatives for telling a fib, but lies are not always easy to forgive because they are more painful. Fibs are often associated with humor and fantasy, while most lies are told to avoid reality.