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Talking to Your Toddler About Lying

by T Akery | January 12th, 2012 | Infants/Toddlers

This is one of the big issues that you face as a parent of a toddler. No matter how good you think your toddler is about telling the truth, at some point, they will come up with a lie. Whether their motive is to stay out of trouble or they lied because they felt like it, as a parent you will have to face this uncomfortable situation.

The good news is at this age, lying isn’t something they’ve had a lot of practice at. So, it is relatively easy to catch the problem right away. In fact, most of the time it is quite obvious that they have lied.

The trick to addressing the problem is to do it at the moment you catch them in a lie. This way, they understand that it is not a behavior that is accepted.

Treat lying as separate issue from the original thing that got them in trouble in the first place. This is so that they understand that lying is another mistake that they made in addition to whatever they did wrong.

Take the time to explain why lying is wrong. Yes, you may need to repeat this particular lecture several times in order for them to get the message. Toddlers do not always pick up the message the first time around.

Clearly explain the consequences for lying. Then follow through on the consequences. Remember, you have to be consistent.

There are some things that you have to remember about toddlers. At this age, toddlers have no concept of the difference between a little lie or a big lie. They don’t know the difference between lying to make your friend feel better or lying because you don’t want to get into a situation. There are no grey areas, only black and white.

You also have to remember that your toddler has a different perspective on things. Sometimes, they see things that you can’t. So be careful to at least hear their side of the story before you judge it is a lie. If you aren’t sure, at least check out their story first to see if it does ring true.

Lying is just one of those issues that you have to face when you have kids. It is something that you will have to address. The earlier that you do address this problem the better.

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