I’m often stunned by just how different my two girls are. Going into this child number two business I thought, particularly since it was another girl, that I would be walking through all the same steps. Already been there. Easy. Ha. Not even close. Same parents, born just two years apart, raised in the same environment, yet they are night and day.
Girl number one is quiet, thoughtful, well spoken. She can be bossy. She’s a leader who works well with others, but also treasures her alone time. Her imagination is wider than the sky.
Girl number two is touchy feely. She’s all about the hugs, and snuggles and snuggles and hugs. She’s genuine, gracious, thankful, and a liar that would give Pinocchio a run for his money.
|The Super Why team dives into Pinocchio as they struggle through how to deal with dishonesty and guilt.|
Kids lie. I get that. I remember when the big kid first started telling fibs. She was three at the time and she was HORRIBLE at it. Not only would she come up with completely impossible scenarios and try and pass them off as truth (look honey, mommy knows your pretend friend didn’t poop on the dining room floor) she was shifty, couldn’t look me in the eye. Her voice would quaver, and when confronted she would almost immediately fold. The girl was just bad at lying, still is.
|Clifford’s pal T-Bone feels guilty after he eats all of Cleo’s new dog food and than blames in on another, imaginary, dog.|
Kid number two came along and when she hit the lying phase all bets were off. This child could look you right in the eye and tell you with unflinching conviction that day was night, the moon was the sun, giraffes run free in our neighbourhood, and Martians visited last week . Things were compounded by the fact that she rarely came up with implausible excuses. Instead she would concoct stories that would lay blame on her big sister and get teary eyed and indignant when you called her on it.
|Chuck and Friends learn that lying by omission is just as bad as telling untruths, when a small pothole grows into an awful trench because they don’t let Chuck’s parents know about it in time.|
With girl number one lying was a phase she quickly outgrew. She will still tell a fib now and again, but I tend to catch her at it pretty easily, and she knows and understands that it’s wrong. She gets that it breaks trust and makes people not believe you when you are telling the truth.
When my second daughter started lying it was awful. Nothing I could say made an impression on her. The concept of truth, of right vs wrong, or even of losing trust, just didn’t seem to concern her at all. I didn’t know how to handle her. I was at my wits end. What got finally got through to her was explaining how her lies made other people feel. My snuggly little love bug is all about the feelings. Telling her “When you lie it makes people sad, hurt, and upset.” made an impact on her. Focusing on how her big sister felt when she was framed for something she didn’t do, and how sad mommy was that she would break her trust, I was finally able to see her through the “every word out of my mouth is a fib” phase.
|Curious George learns that it’s better to tell the truth even if your intentions are good, after his friend Chef Pisghetti almost quits cooking when he mistakenly serves George Burgers.
If you’ve got your own little Pinocchio on your hands, maybe sitting down together and watching a few kid-friendly shows related to lying and honesty will help.
1. Super Why!: S1,E15: Humpty Dumpty and Other Fairytale Adventures: Pinocchio
2. The Adventures of Chuck & Friends: S1, E9: The Pothole
3. Clifford the Big Red Dog: S1, E26: The Kibble Crook
4. Curious George: S1, E19: Truth about George Burger
Disclosure: I am a member of the Netflix #StreamTeam, and as such I will be providing thoughts and suggestions about what’s currently showing on Netflix. As always my words and opinions are my own.