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Redwood_City_Mom
Redwood_Cit... asks:
Q:

How can I teach my kid the difference between a 'good lie' and a 'bad lie'?

I'm wondering how other parents help their kids understand the difference between "good lies"  and "bad lies".  For example, my son recently caught me in a lie.  A friend's mom called to invite him for a playdate.  He'd been to this home for a playdate before and had asked not to go back.  (He and the boy had some dissagreements and the mom was no where to be found to help them work things out.  I think my son felt a little scared in their home).  So on the phone (almost without thinking) I politley told the mom that he wouldn't be able to come play because we had a doctor's appointment.  As soon as I hung up my five year old looked me in the eye and said "Mom, we don't have a doctor's appointment today".  Ouch!

So I sort of sputtered for a while about how sometimes grown-ups have to tell small lies.  He stopped me and said "why did you not just tell her I don't want to go?"  Double ouch!  I said something about not wanting to hurt her feelings but my head I was thinking "he's right...this is a double standard!  I expect him to always tell the truth - even when it's hard.  There's no way I can make him understand 'social lying'.  Yikes!"

I'd love to hear how other parents handle this.  What do you say to your kids to help them understand the difference between a "good lie" and a "bad lie"?

In Topics: Communicating with my child (The tough talks)
> 60 days ago

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ronald
ronald writes:
Great question, and I know the issue well. The best way to avoid having to lie is to not lie at all. Alternative answer that you might consider is as follows: 1) Today is not a good day for Bobby to play.

Ron
> 60 days ago

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BrookeO
BrookeO writes:
There is no such thing as a "good lie."  Telling the truth is hard sometimes but you should not lie to get out of a hard situation.  Your son will be better off learning how to gently tell the truth from you then how to lie from you.  Best of luck.
> 60 days ago

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