in a false light

in a false light

1. In a manner or way that creates an inaccurate, untrue, or misleading point of view. The incumbent senator contends that her opponent has painted her in a false light with misleading claims about her voting record. Anyone who boasts about their own bravery like that is probably presenting themselves in a false light.
2. In law, in an unwanted or unsolicited position of public perception that, while technically not false, is misleading and causes emotional or mental distress. A: "The way they worded that headline makes her sound like a monster who prioritized her lifestyle over the wellbeing of her children, and the public thinks it's completely true! She's absolutely devastated." B: "She should have her lawyer charge the publication with putting her in a false light."
See also: false, light
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.