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My 11yo dss has been lying to us lately, well, forever it seems. We know some of it comes from his survival mechanism, living in two separate houses (half time at both), one which is hostile towards ours. Part due to his age. BUT, he will lie about the silliest things. When something happens we don't jump down his throat or anything, if he tells the truth we work through it, and we tell him the worst he can do is lie about it...but he still lies! We try to praise him for telling the truth when it's difficult (though that's very rare) We have almost eliminated the need to lie, but it just continues.<br><br>
Yesterday he cut his lip, we had no idea how or why. Dh asked him, dd asked him and I asked him. (none of us knowing the other one asked) and he said he didn't know. Dh and I both said that it looked like a shaving cut, to both of us, separately, he said he hasn't shaved for 3 months. I'm not sure what that means, or why he would be "shaving" at all, but that's beside the point.<br><br>
Anyway, what would you do in this situation? He would not have been in trouble if he would have told us he wanted to shave and tried it and cut himself. In fact it would be nice to know he wanted to shave, but nope, he just lies!<br><br>
He lies about when he gets papers from school, we missed a big ceremony where he was honored because he didn't give us the notice and then lied and said he got it after the ceremony.<br><br>
We usually take away a privilege when he does this, like having friends over etc. We reiterate how important it is to be honest. We give him many times to come clean but he sticks with the lie until he's crying about how he's being honest ...sometimes it comes out..or we prove it. IT's just so frustrating.<br><br>
We know kids this age will lie, but to be so adamant about it and act upset that we don't trust him, it's getting ridiculous. It also puts a lot of strain on our relationship with his mom because he lies about her and us to the other. I just don't understand in many cases why he lies, especially since we aren't that strict about trying things, or making mistakes. (like forgetting a notice) It's like he does it just to do it. Could it possibly be psychological? His mom has also lied to us/courts/family etc a lot, and I think she believes what she says. I'm not trying to bash her, I just think it's scary.<br><br>
Any input appreciated!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 

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Let's face it, no one wants to be "punished" so we lie! We all lie (even white lie) sometime or another.<br><br>
What I do with my dd is turn a lie situation into a way to connect (and believe me when I say I'm just learning how to do this---my littles don't lie that much). For instance, I recently found a bunch of chocolate wrappers behind a picture frame on her bookshelf. Instead of outright confronting her, I let her know I knew by creating this game with all the kids where I tried to find a place to hide chocolate (all the while grunting like an ape). They were all dying laughing and when I finally chose a hiding spot right behind my dd's picture frame, she immediately looked perplexed and knew right then I knew! I said, Hmm, I wonder if anyone ever thought to hide chocolate (wrappers) behind picture frames before (I'm trying to give her an out here)...but she didn't bite!<br><br>
HOURS later, she came to me out of the blue and said, Mom, I hid chocolate behind that frame once too. I let her know I was disappointed that she took the chocolate without asking. I made a suggest that she use her own money to replace the chocolate (it's the family stash for smores) and in the future, use her own money to buy herself some chocolate (this was all followed by a mini-lecture of the effects of sugar on the body and the reasons I choose to limit it). She decided she is okay with chocolate every once in a while!<br><br>
I avoided a whole power struggle and all that frustration and my dd trusts me to tell the truth.
 

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Could it be that in lying as a defense mechanism it's grown into a habit that he can't break? It sounds like he has gotten so use to lying about other things, that it is now his automatic response.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Kindermama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15383348"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Let's face it, no one wants to be "punished" so we lie! We all lie (even white lie) sometime or another.<br><br>
What I do with my dd is turn a lie situation into a way to connect (and believe me when I say I'm just learning how to do this---my littles don't lie that much). For instance, I recently found a bunch of chocolate wrappers behind a picture frame on her bookshelf. Instead of outright confronting her, I let her know I knew by creating this game with all the kids where I tried to find a place to hide chocolate (all the while grunting like an ape). They were all dying laughing and when I finally chose a hiding spot right behind my dd's picture frame, she immediately looked perplexed and knew right then I knew! I said, Hmm, I wonder if anyone ever thought to hide chocolate (wrappers) behind picture frames before (I'm trying to give her an out here)...but she didn't bite!<br><br>
HOURS later, she came to me out of the blue and said, Mom, I hid chocolate behind that frame once too. I let her know I was disappointed that she took the chocolate without asking. I made a suggest that she use her own money to replace the chocolate (it's the family stash for smores) and in the future, use her own money to buy herself some chocolate (this was all followed by a mini-lecture of the effects of sugar on the body and the reasons I choose to limit it). She decided she is okay with chocolate every once in a while!<br><br>
I avoided a whole power struggle and all that frustration and my dd trusts me to tell the truth.</div>
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That's funny! I'm glad that worked for you, and I think that honestly that would work with DD. With DSS I feel we have tried a more light-hearted approach as well. Maybe not with gorilla sounds though! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> He will happily continue with the lie. I feel like we do everything to get him to be okay with telling the truth, we say, "you are not in trouble if you did" type stuff all the time and it still doesn't help. I think with today's issue we might say something about the blood on our towel in front of him and see what happens. Give him a chance to fess up without confrontation. (should we throw in some animal noises!? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">) I think we will have to try this approach again, giving him more of a chance to tell us without feeling defensive, even if just asking what happened shouldn't do that, I guess it makes him feel that way.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>treegardner</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15383373"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Could it be that in lying as a defense mechanism it's grown into a habit that he can't break? It sounds like he has gotten so use to lying about other things, that it is now his automatic response.</div>
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Oh definitely. I think that is the case, but we just don't know how to stop it, that's the problem. There are so many issues with this situation as far as his behavior goes. We just don't want to let it all slide though, kwim? We want to raise honest and respectful kids, and if we let this stuff all go because it's a defense he can't seem to shake, who knows what kind of teen/adult he will be? We just don't know how to handle the lying without making it worse. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Yesterday he cut his lip, we had no idea how or why. Dh asked him, dd asked him and I asked him. (none of us knowing the other one asked) and he said he didn't know. Dh and I both said that it looked like a shaving cut, to both of us, separately, he said he hasn't shaved for 3 months. I'm not sure what that means, or why he would be "shaving" at all, but that's beside the point.<br><br>
Anyway, what would you do in this situation?</td>
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honestly. If he said he didn't know i would have let it go. Is it really a big deal. If he wanted to shave(even if there is no reason for it) I don't see why he needed to tell you. Something like this is so small I wouldn't have made a big deal out it. At this age they're funny. They want to grow up(ie, shaving without needing to) but are awkward enough about it that they don't want to bring it up or talk about it. He may have been embarrassed and didn't want to talk about it so it was easier to lie.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">He lies about when he gets papers from school, we missed a big ceremony where he was honored because he didn't give us the notice and then lied and said he got it after the ceremony.</td>
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Were you guys upset about missing the ceremony? Is it possible he didn't want you guys there? or his mom was coming & he didn't want any uncomfortable feelings about both sets being there? He may have wanted you guys there & was embarrassed about forgetting to give you the note.<br><br>
Small things like both of these examples I'd let go, maybe send a note in an agenda asking teachers to call for big things like awards. I'd save the questioning & getting upset for the really big lies that will have an impact on him.
 
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