Parents Are The Worst Liars.
I’m just a walking, breathing liar. From the second I open my eyes in the morning – How did you sleep mommy? – to the second I go to bed at night, I’m spewing lies to the kids left and right. It’s hard to count the number of lies that I tell in a given day….
Okay. It’s time to go to the grocery store. It’s going to be so much fun! – Lie.
Sure, I would love to go to the park right now. – Lie.
You did SUCH a good job cleaning up your mess. – Lie.
If you do that one more time, no television for the rest of the week. – Lie.
And while I know all parents lie through their teeth, I’m not completely convinced it’s just a parenting thing.
How do you feel today? Fine. – Lie.
I’m sorry my house is such a mess. It doesn’t normally look like this. – Lie.
I think I’m going to stay home tonight, I’m not really feeling that great. – Lie.
Side Note: As a rule of thumb, anytime I woman says the word fine… It really means a tumultuous of things, none of which actually mean fine.
Even if it’s not a bold faced lie like telling your toddler the garbage man threw away their binky…. Where do you draw the line of a white lie? When is it okay to lie to others? And under what terms do we expect to hear the truth?
Is it okay if it’s to spare someone’s feelings? – You look like you’re feeling so much better today.
Is it okay if it’s to save a little face? – Yes, these cookies for the bake sale are homemade.
Is it okay if you do it to preserve innocence and imagination? – I can’t wait for Santa Claus to come tonight!
We lie like a rug and then turn around and expect our kids to tell the truth. Children are inherently honest creatures. They don’t mind showing their honesty even when it comes at the cost of embarrassment. They don’t give a second thought to pointing out the cashier’s 4-inch long fake, hot pink nails. They don’t hesitate to tell me when they’ve farted in public. And they sure as hell love to point out all of my flaws including the giant, crater-sized zits that rear their ugly heads during that-special-time-of-the-month.
So. Where do they learn to lie? Unfortunately, the answer is us.
Honesty helps our children to navigate their moral compass, ever-shaping their behaviors and ethical decisions in life. Yet here we are – lying TO them and lying ABOUT them… those sweet little innocent angels.
According to research, even little baby lies can be damaging to our children and not to mention – more exhausting for us parents! Lying is deliberate – no matter the circumstance. It’s unnatural and requires a lot of mental energy to keep the ball of lies rolling. A lie requires that we watch our words while monitoring our body language and facial expressions.
At the end of the day – the art of lying is arduous. I know WHY we do it – as we constantly teeter on the tight rope of lying to save our sanity, lying to maintain control, and lying to protect them. But perhaps we might want to take a look at the extent to which we do. Perhaps, there comes a valid time and place where lying to our kids that they have “5 more minutes” takes on other unintentional lessons. Instead, when the time comes, maybe we should use those opportunities to try to teach valuable lessons.
Today – I may really feel too tired to go to the park and five more minutes really means fifteen. I might be the world’s biggest liar, but dammit, one day I’m going to mean what I say and say what I mean.