Written by Jana Angeles
Honesty is the best policy, but unfortunately there will be times where your kids will lie to you right in front of your face. Maybe they didn’t get your approval to go somewhere or you’re just strict when it comes to rules, either way, as kids grow older, they’ll have the tendency to be swayed by their own independence and would rather make decisions for themselves without you there. It’s hard to accept this when they start growing up, but that’s all part of the parenting journey.
You’ll learn to love and hate the stages of teen life to young adulthood. However, you don’t need to be the perfect parent and there will be times where you’re required to step in and give some guidance to your kids. Handling lies is part of the process so we’ve managed to come up with some handy tips on how to deal with them.
Teach Them The Value of Honesty
Lies catch up to you eventually and we’ve had to learn that the hard way. Teaching your kids that honesty is valued in society will help them understand and hopefully encourage them to not lie again. Provide example scenarios on how honesty is valued such as viewing some episodes of your favourite children’s TV series about lying or even just giving them a hypothetical one. This will help them engage with honesty, benefiting them in the long run.
Ask Them To Write About What They Did Wrong
Writing is always a therapeutic activity for most of us and it’s great to ask children to put things to pen and paper when it comes to the flow of their imagination and skills in English. If you’ve had a problem trying to understand why they have lied to you, ask them to write their response on their reasoning behind lying. Maybe it could be peer pressure from school or they did it unintentionally. This will give them some down time to think about their actions and understand that there’s consequences to lying (ie. upsetting or disappointing mum or dad or no dessert after dinner!).
Justify The Importance of Truth
If your child is stubborn as a mule, you need to give valid reasons on why telling the truth is so important (even if it hurts!). There are moments to parenting that make us frustrated and when we get to this point, this will make us feel guilty about how we handle problems. We will ask ourselves questions about whether we’ve done enough for our child and question our own morals and values. There’s no reason to put yourself down for this – you have the power to reason with your child. Make them understand your points and help them grasp the concept of telling the truth.
Let Them Know There’s Consequences To Lying
Lying could lead to bigger problems, leading to situations that may put your children in danger. It’s important to emphasise that lying adds on to the weight of their conscious. You can also suggest that lying is heavy on the heart and telling the truth will provide relief and weight off your shoulders. Let them know that you care for their well-being and that you are open to listening to them whenever a new situation arises in their life – the good and the bad. Keeping you well-informed is just checking in to see if they’re safe
Overall, there are plenty of ways to handle lies but of course, this is unique to every parent. Just remember that your children aren’t doing it intentionally at times; they’re simply just avoiding any trouble with you. Be cautious about your child’s behaviour and if you suspect anything alarming, talk to them straight away about it. All it takes is an honest conversation that will hopefully encourage your little ones to take trust in you and do the right thing.