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Parenting a Liar…

November 1, 2011 in foster care, foster parents, Kidjacked, parent-child relationship

Do you have a child who lies for no apparent reason? You aren’t alone and you could be a big part of the problem, which means you can help.

A woman typing on a laptop

Foster kids need computers too

Before you get all indignant, please understand, I believe some children have what I think of, as a “lying gene,” and lying simply comes natural to these children. Children who have been moved around from foster care home to foster care home, will often take on a new identity, when they realize they are living with complete strangers and can become anyone they wish. In these cases, lying becomes a way of life.

These foster children are the ones the system likes to label as RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder) children. Children in foster care soon learn to keep people at a distance and will have trust issues. Who can blame them? You can’t wear your heart on your sleeve without having it repeatedly broken by a heartless uncaring system, where the individual gets chewed up in the grinding of the system.

I can remember carrying everything I own in a paper bag. I’m certain many foster care children are thrilled to receive suitcases from churches, schools and other charitable organizations that have donation drives for foster kids. It would be wonderful if more could be done for these children. It’s too bad most foster care children never receive the benefits of things done in their name — such as donations for laptops.

Just how long do you think a child alone, left to the mercy of the system, will be able to keep a $1,000 laptop — or even a $250 notebook? If they aren’t stolen by a foster family member or foster parent, the temptation to sell it for cash or even drugs (if they are an issue) is great.

Getting back to the child with the imaginary “lying gene”

Learning how to better approach the child, can drastically increase his or her truth-telling. If you have one child, this is much easier, because you know who “did it,” you don’t have to play investigator. So, insteading of asking the child, “Who left the toilet seat up?” You simply say, “Please don’t leave the seat up on the toilet.”

As parents of a child with lying issues, it’s easy to get into the bad habit of asking questions that we already know the answers to. When we learn to rephrase our questions, or avoid asking a question all-together, we can help avoid the temptation to lie.  Often with a little thought and an attitude change, you can help your child feel better about his or herself and break the cycle of lying.

It is up to the parent to demonstrate good moral fortitude. Be sure your child hears you being honest. Take the time to continually express the importance on honestly. The Bible can serve as a useful tool in training your child in honesty. Ask your child to read, memorize, copy and recite from this list of scripture verses on honesty.

You can choose to tolerate your child’s lying, which can and often will continue as a pattern into adulthood or you can choose to change your parenting style and address the issue — the earlier the better. If you have a child who is constantly lying, don’t give up — get help.

 [Download: Bible Lesson on Truth and Lies (pdf)]

Click Here to Stop the Yelling • Lecturing • Scolding Pushing and Prodding
and Start Getting The Results You Want

Teaching Honesty to our Children

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