It is interesting to look at when, how and why kids lie, learn to lie and choose to lie.
Simply, we teach them.
Don't tell daddy we ate the last chocolate, Wasn't that dinner delicious (yes, after all the burnt bits were scraped off and it was covered in tomato sauce), no mummy your bum doesn't look big in that etc!
Our newly 6 year old has now found lying and doesn't even really understand or notice that she is doing it. It is natural for a kid to want to please their parents, not make mistakes and certainly not be caught out. Nobody wants to knowingly be seen to do something wrong or admit to doing the wrong thing.
My most current example is such a small one but one that really makes me smile and I am sure one that will stay with me for some time. Let me share.
It is close to bed time. Our youngest is tired but still acting like a big girl and wanting to stay up late like the big ones. It inevitably gets to shower time, what a big girl, she can do it herself now. Time to put on pajamas- great, well done. OK, off to brush your teeth. Back through to the living room to give a goodnight kiss. Uh oh, no kiss for you, there's toothpaste all over your mouth.
"Did you clean your mouth after brushing your teeth?" (OK, a bit of a silly obvious question, but you have to make the kids think!)
Question "Are you sure"
Answer "yes", so if I go through to the bathroom, I will find the towel clean and not half covered in toothpaste?" "Yes". "OK, Last chance- I don't want you to lie to me......... " "Well, maybe......."
You have to smile, but the slippery slope has to start somewhere.
It makes me think, there are so many times we actively lie and a white lie is the accepted and chosen way for interaction but equally, lies lead to hiding more serious issues.
Did you take it? This is potentially hiding theft.
Did you break it? Not taking blame and avoiding taking responsibility for the consequences of your actions
And the list goes on.
When did you last lie? Was it a white one or a snowballing one that got out of control?
When have your kids lied? Was it funny or more serious?
Can you even imagine life if no one told a lie?