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dd is 3 and 3/4, she tells stories, we don't consider them lying sinve she is too young to really know the difference. At school they are discussing lying but they are all positive discipline so its called:Are you telling the truth, or are you telling a story? When dd is really adamant about something having occured that hasn't or didin't or greatly exaggarates I just seek HER truth. Sometimes kids are still feeling the hurt from something and stories are their way of healing. Role play works well too...either way for the next few years thats how we'll do it.
I'd think around 5-6 we'll have to dig deeper for answers about how to deal with this,our dd's stor chart said she'd be a kick butt story teller so we'll have to think of this soon!! Hope people have good suggestions!
my son knows the difference. he thinks its funny to 'trick' mommy and daddy. such as 'jacob did you poop in your diaper or did you fart?' and he will say 'no mama, no fart and no poopy' then i will ask him again this way 'dont lie or you have to drink lemon juice' and he says real fast 'i sorry mama, i pooped in my diaper' (we use lemon juice for alot of reasons for our son... when he says a bad word and knows its bad he gets a finger with lemon juice touched to his mouth, same with when he tried to spit, or say something bad. we want him to associate it with bad things from his mouth so when he lies and we bring up lemon juice, he associates it to spitting and swearing and biting and knows its bad so he doesnt do it nearly as often now)
I'm sorry, I'm truly not trying to start an argument here at all, but developmentally children do not have the intellectual tools to know if they are "lying" until they reach between 4-6 years of age. Your son ,like every human I've ever met ,does not want to tell others when he has pooped or tooted.
Young children will naturally try to avoid situations that they do noy enjoy ie getting a diaper change, Jacob has figured out how to try and avoid this.
From everything I have researched I've learned that children can learn to lie around 3 years old if they have advanced speech and my son has excellent speech so I conclude he does understand and he lies about more than just diaper situations. I was only using that as an example. There are many reasons a child lies, but I do believe he knows what he is doing because sometimes as soon as he says a lie, he will run to me to tell me he is sorry and give me a hug. Then he tells the truth. I'm sure Jacob has learned to avoid alot of things but he lies to avoid them and I don't want him to think it is okay to do this, so I use my way to make him acknowledge it. I know you are not trying to argue and neither am I, but I do feel that he is capable of telling a lie at 2 1/2. It is relatively new and I am trying to break it before it becomes a habit.
Echo hasn't learned to talk so no lying here but I want to share a story that my friend told me about her then 4 year old.
Her son had begun to lie about everything. The sky is brown not blue, saying that he was eating pizza when he was obviously eating a sandwich and then bigger things like saying his Dad hit him or that Grandma was yelling at him when there were people there that could see that those things had not happened. They tried to explain the difference between the truth and a lie and he just wasn't getting it. Sooooo, they sat him down and talked to him about the bible. They told him that if you were good and followed "the golden rule" that you would go to Heaven but if you were bad and did things like hurt people or lie than you would go to Hell. He started to cry uncontrollably and nothing that they did was calming him down. Finally he was able to get out the words "But I don't want to go anywhere! I want to stay here with you!"
This was a few years ago and it's now looking like he may have aspergers which explains a lot of his earlier behaviors. I'm an atheist so I won't be using the threat of eternal damnation with my daughter but I haven't put a lot of thought into what I will do. I'm looking forward to hearing everyones responses.