Parenting Connection: Stop Lying to Your Kids

Parenting Connection

LANSING, Mi- (WLNS-TV)

It’s Parenting Connection Tuesday and 6 News is here for you with tips, strategies, and helpful reminders from local child development experts on how we can be better parents and guardians.

Today’s topic: Lying to Our Children.

We all do it. Some parents are worse than others, but the majority of the time it’s not to be malicious, we lie to move on from a topic.

Child experts say, there are three reasons why parents lie to their kids. Convenience, because sometimes mom and dad don’t have the time to fully explain or answer a question. Avoidance, because we would rather not talk about something uncomfortable. Manipulation, which is what parents use to get their way no matter how far the truth is stretched. The problem is, your kids will grow older and get much wiser and when repeated claims you provided continue to turn up false, it can cause a trust issue according to MSU Child Development expert Kendra Moyses, that may never get repaired.

“What we need to do as parents is realize they are looking to us. We’re trying to develop their moral compass and provide opportunities to trust adults so we need to be careful on how we frame those things. When we caught, we also need to fess up.”

Here are ways according to MSU child development experts, to instill some honesty in situations when convenience, avoidance, or manipulation may lead you to normally lie.
*First, get real. It’s ok to provide an answer your kids may not want to hear.
*Get back to them. If a big question comes up during your morning rush, let them know you need time to think and then make sure you follow up.
*Fess up if you get caught in a lie and explain why you did it.
*Build parameters. Sometimes we all say social lies to not hurt someone’s feelings, but be on the same page when it comes to where or who they are with.
*Talk about the tough stuff. Many times trust is gained when you can share truths or lessons that are embarrassing or painful.

Ultimately, stop the lying because kids getting their information from the playground instead of a parent isn’t a smart path to success.

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