Parenting Big Kids (5-8) Support Group

This community is focused on the joys, challenges and concerns faced by parents of big kids (5 to 8 year olds). The major areas of child development include: physical development, perception and sensory development, communication and language development, cognitive development, emotional development and social development. Join to share your stories and get advice.

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I have two boys, ages 4 and 5. What is the best way to deal with lying???

I want the kids to feel comfortable telling me the truth, but at the same time, I feel like I can't let the lies go unpunished.



It depends on the situation. Are they lying to not get into trouble or lying to not have to fix something? lying for someone else? Our general rule is 'double trouble' for lying. If they kids lie about stupid stuff, like, not making their bed or not doing homework, well, that's minor - 10 minutes early to bed, but if they lie about lying...well, double trouble - usually a toy or game and bed early. Lying is NOT acceptable when it involves safetey of them or others - if they tell the truth that might result in someone getting into trouble, they still need to tell the truth - ie. tattling on a friend who stole from the teacher, or something like that. Ultimately, they need to know that telling the truth is their moral obligating and that even white lies, can cause harm to others. Plus, make them realize, that telling the truth, while maybe hurtful or uncomfortable, it's the right thing to do and they will feel good about it - if they lie, they most likely will add to that lie, therefore creating a constant strain on the issue which, at 4/5 is probably not that big of a deal anyway. One thing we alawys ask the boys if they lie, is WHY? Why did you lie about not doing your homework (or whatever) usually, they can't answer - if they say 'I don't know" well, we tell them 'if you don't know why you are doing something, probably shouldn't be doing it..."
Good luck to you! :)

We do not tolerate lying in our house. Honesty gets rewarded, even if the reward is a lesser punishment for misbehavior. The punishment is doubled if there was lying. I think it's very important for children to learn early that honesty gets rewarded. I want them to be uncomfortable lying to me, so maybe they won't be so quick to lie when they are teenagers.
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