Lying is one of the most common child behaviour problems that parents face, especially when their children are young. Children often tend to lie when they sense bad consequences like a scolding or punishment coming their way, but the problem really aggravates when they form a habit of lying. It is now, that you really start getting confused about when your child is telling the absolute truth, exaggerated or distorted truth or a complete lie.
Here are some ways to get your child to tell the truth:
- Encourage everyone in your house including yourself to speak the truth. Make sure the rule is followed under all circumstances.
- Never lie in front of your child, even if it is as simple as making an excuse to not to go to a friend’s party because everything that you do is being watched by your child, all the time.
- Make them understand the benefits of speaking the truth and to consider other people’s emotions while being honest.
- Study your child’s behaviour, observe her statements and narrow them down to the reason behind her lies – fantasy, boastfulness or fear.
- Warn your child once, before actually announcing any consequences with words like “If I find you lying, you’ll have to clean my room”.
- Make use of the ‘restorative justice’ or positive punishment instead of scolding or other negative consequences, example make her do the math test thrice if she lied about her marks.
- Share stories like that of ‘The Boy who cried Wolf’ and others to encourage them to speak the truth and avoid lying because then they would lose their trustworthiness.
- Identify when your child is being honest and acknowledge it by pointing out that you noticed her being honest despite the situation being difficult.