There are no completely honest people, everybody lies from time to time. However, most parents want their children to be cleverer, better and more honest than they are. That's why they get upset when their children lie. What to do if your child lies? Read on to find out.
Lying is a defense mechanism of sorts. Both children and adults lie to avoid a tough situation or protect their friends or themselves. Besides, lying can be a means of getting benefit. As you see, children lie for the same reason as adults.
One of the most widespread causes of children's lying is fear. They are afraid to disappoint or upset their parents, be blamed or punished. Sometimes children can lie because they are afraid of their parents. In this case parents are partially to blame, because too severe punishments, insufficient support, strict requirements can lead to child lies.
When this occurs, don't try to wean your child from lying. You should try to build trust with your child and let them know that you love them despite everything. If your children stop feeling fear, they won't need to lie.
Another reason for lying is self-defense and need for independence. Your children create their own inner world and protect it from adults. For instance, a teenager can lie because he or she doesn't want to let their parents in his or her private life.
Sometimes children under school age are too imaginative which leads to lying. Children can create their own reality and then believe in it. They don't realize that they are telling a lie because they are sure that their fantasies are real.
If your children don't stop believing in their imaginative world after a while, try to understand what they lack in the real world.
Development of social skills is another reason for lying. Lying is a social skill indeed and you should admit that you use it very often. Parents don't even notice when they lie with such a purpose. For instance, when you ask your husband to say that you are not at home when somebody is calling you, you show your children that lying is acceptable. They will follow your example and use white lies when they need them. That's why try to be a good role model.
Child's lying is not a problem per se, it only indicates that something is wrong with your child. Don't punish your child at once. Try to determine the causes of lying and eliminate them. Consult a child psychologist if you can't do that by yourself.
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