I’M JUST CURIOUS: Illusory truth effect

by Debbie Walker

Have you ever heard the term “Illusory Truth Effect”? I went looking for an answer and found it on Wikipedia, a website on the internet. My question was, “If you hear something enough does it become real?” The following is what I learned:

“Illusory Truth Effect is the tendency to believe false information to be correct after repeated exposure.

“Repetition makes statements easier to process relative to new, unrepeated statements, leading people to believe that the repeated conclusion is more truth.”

“Illusory truth effects impact on participants who knew the correct answer to begin with but were persuaded to believe otherwise through the repetition of a falsehood.”

“Illusory truth effects play a significant role in such fields as election campaigns, advertising, news media and political propaganda.”

I read this stuff and I understand what they are saying but it set my mind just a buzzing. I was thinking about the negative words that some people live with day after day.

We are told that we need to be careful of the things we tell our children. After reading about the truth effects the first thing I thought of was the children who are told they are stupid or dumb, etc., each day.

Or the child who is told day after day by a parent that they are just like the other parent, none of which was compliments for them. The child hears the negative words and internalizes them. Sadly, the parent doesn’t understand yet.

Women who are dealing with abuse coming from a spouse are often criticized and misunderstood by all. People don’t understand why she would take such abuse. The thing is, this woman has been told for years that she is worthless, an anchor around his neck, dumb, not worthy of how nice he is to her, etc. Is it any wonder she has no confidence, she may not be able to put words to it but this would be one big reason?

Like I said, it started my head just a buzzing. What do you think?

This is short tonight. I’m just curious where those three little words take your mind. Let me know, I am interested. Contact me at DebbieWalker@townline.org. Thanks for reading and have a great week.


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