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Why children lie to parents?

Have you ever told a lie?


This is a very controversial topic, I know.

My aim is not to cause upset.

My intention for this post is to help you, the parent raise a critical thinking future adult who is not afraid to speak their truth.


How all this came about is because I had one challenge in my own parenting that I seemed to hit a wall with.

My approach was missing an ingredient that lay hidden from me.


What I didn’t see, was that I felt so deeply saddened about my child lying to me that I overlooked one of the main principles I learned as a Positive Discipline parent educator.


In my devastation about not hearing the truth:

I forgot to come from my heart.



Here are some reasons I have since learned why children may lie to us?

  • Fear of something (consequence)

  • Lessen their “sentence”

  • Discover more about themselves

  • Witnessing an adult lie

  • Protecting you (the parent) to not disappoint you


I lied as a child and sometimes as an adult to make myself look better.

In my mistaken belief I thought I could get others to accept me, if I made up a more grandiose version of myself.

Then I finally would feel good enough.


Can you relate to this feeling of inferiority?


It wasn’t a pleasant feeling to just be myself and finding attention is such a common need for a child.


Last week, I asked my children (not related to what bothered me):

Why do they think children, younger than them lie?


One child said:

"When a young child makes a mistake like taking an extra sweet - it is really serious for the child.


Then when the mother or father find out, the parent just wants to hear the truth and is more disappointed when they are being lied to than what the child actually did.”


In my opinion, we also lie to ourselves and those lies probably hurt the most.


What I want to say is that lying may be present everywhere in our daily life including some ads about if we only bought particular items, we would be so much happier.


When it comes to speaking the truth, that takes courage at any age.


You can try this out and observe how often you bite your tongue to not risk being rejected or losing someone in your life.


What I have come to learn is that my child reacts completely different when I come from my heart and empathise rather than accuse them of lying to me.


"It is never a crime to speak the truth if we say it with love”, is what my business mentor once said to me.


When you get curious why a child makes up a fabrication of what actually happened, you will approach your child in a much kinder way.


To share how I managed to help this one family member brush their teeth more regularly, you are invited to book a free effortless call with me and decide if this approach would work for you.


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