I am a John Rosemond certified parent coach. Rosemond parenting is based on love and leadership; parents become leaders whose children choose to follow their leadership! My business, LPC-Ludwig Parenting Coach,serving the greater Buffalo,NY area, provides workshops and individual coaching to teach Rosemond parenting principles and help families put them to use in addressing children's misbehavior.
Monday, November 19, 2012
Lying - Part 1
At a recent workshop, several parents were concerned about
lying in their homes.Examples included
children of 5 and 6 as well as children between 9 and 11 – a horse of a
different color.In today’s blog I will
focus on young children.But first of all,
the common elements of lying.
When kids lie, parents get really upset – they believe in
honesty, they are upset that their child would disrespect them by lying, and
they fear that the child is going to turn into a criminal!One of the key things I recommend to parents
is to “take 3 steps backward from misbehavior incidents, take a deep breath and
look at the larger picture”.That almost
always results in developing a better response than jumping feet first into the
heat of the moment.
Young children do not have the same sense of right and wrong
that adults have.Young children are NOT
“little adults”; they do not know what you do.Therefore, in most instances of young children misbehaving, I recommend
that you don’t ask a lot of questions – don’t provide the opportunity for lying
in the first place!If you are
reasonably certain that your child did something, don’t ask whether he did it –
you are setting him up to say “no” and starting a cat and mouse game.And when you play cat and mouse you do not
look like you are in charge!!
Your reaction to childish behavior problems should be to
“call the foul and assess the penalty”.If you don’t ask a lot of questions, you won’t give them the opportunity
·“You took candy without my permission so now you
are going to spend an hour in your room.”
·“Your toothbrush is dry – go brush them now”.
·He told you his friend hit him, but then changes
the story.“Oh your friend didn’t hit
you?Well I am glad of that” – and drop
the subject.If you keep asking “why did
you lie to me”, your child may really not know the answer and he may be pressed
to just make something up.
·He sneaks into your room to retrieve a toy you
had taken away as punishment, and then hides it. “You took your toy without
permission so you are spending the rest of the day in your room”.(Helpful hint: avoid the cat and mouse game
in the first place – if you take something away, put it someplace he CANNOT get
Stop trying to figure out why they took candy, didn’t
brush teeth, lied about being hit or took the toy back.Statements like “You know better”, “I thought
I could trust you”, “I am very disappointed in you” are stating your adult
interpretation of moral behavior.Your
young child simply does not understand right and wrong the way you do.So use consequences effectively to address
the initial misbehavior and don’t create the breeding ground for lies to
start!!!Learning right from wrong will
come – albeit in baby steps – Rome wasn’t built in a day!!