5 Lies You Should Never Tell Your Children
What parent hasn’t told a lie to their children at one time or another? If we’re honest, I think we all have. However, there are some lies that can be especially hurtful to our little ones. With that in mind, we want to talk about five lies you should never tell your children.
It’s common for adults to tell “little white lies” to obtain comfort, peace and quiet. But what happens when we lie to our children? What if we promise them something and then don’t follow through? First of all, we’re teaching them that it’s okay to lie. And second, we’re demonstrating that they can’t trust in the things we say. To put it another way, our words lose their value.
When we lie to our children by making promises we don’t keep, we’re hurting them. So, we’re going to look at some of the times that lying to children can be especially problematic. Keep reading!
5 lies you should never tell your children
All lies have a harmful effect on children. However, there are certain times where lying to little ones can be especially detrimental.
As parents, we’re our children’s role models, so we need to avoid telling lies. However, there are times when our children insist so much that we make empty threats or empty promises. And other times, out of exasperation, we say hurtful things that simply aren’t true. Let’s take a look at some examples…
“I can’t stand you anymore!”
If you’ve ever said this to your child, I’m sure it’s not because you really meant it. Rather, your own anger and frustration caused you to lose your cool. The problem is your child doesn’t know that you didn’t really mean what you said. Children take the things we say at face value and believe them to be true.
So, when you accidentally say these kinds of things, you need to have a talk with your child. Once you’re calm, sit down together and make things right. Tell your child you made a mistake and you didn’t mean what you said.
“If you don’t do what I say, I’m going to call the police”
Every parent dreams of their children doing what they say without hesitation or protest. However, if we hold onto that expectation, we’re bound to end up frustrated. Sometimes, in order to get our children to obey, we try to scare them into it by making fictional – and scary – threats.
But when we do this, we not only hurt their feelings, we also scare them. Unintentionally, we’re sending our kids the message that, if they don’t behave the way we want, then we won’t want them around anymore. I’m sure you don’t want your kids to feel that way, so avoid making these kinds of threats.
“You’re fine, it’s nothing” – another one of the lies you should never tell your children
Another thing we often do with our kids – even with the best of intentions – is trying to downplay things when they get hurt. We do this because we don’t want them to become overwhelmed by the situation. However, rather than helping, we’re actually making things worse.
If your children fall, get hurt, and cry over a small scratch, don’t tell them it’s nothing, what are you teaching them? That there’s a difference between what they feel and the reality that their parents see. This is confusing for children; it makes it hard for them to know when their feelings have value and when they should ignore them.
“You deserve to have it all”
As parents, our children are the apple of our eye, the light of our lives, our everything. But that doesn’t make them better or more deserving than anyone else. We live in a society where it’s important for children to learn that they’re not the center of attention. Our kids need to understand that they’re not more important than others.
We should teach our children the value of humility so that they can integrate socially. They need to be aware that they deserve the best, but it’s best to obtain it through effort.
Helping children learn that they should be grateful for what they have keeps them from becoming tyrants. At the same time, help them recognize their own mistakes and show them that you’ll always be there for them.
Don’t teach your children that they’ll never suffer in life
Sometimes, we love our children so much that we don’t want them to suffer. Therefore, we paint a picture of a perfect world and try to keep them from getting frustrated. Often, this means promising things that won’t come true. Contrary to what you think, you’re not helping them – you’re hurting them.
What’s more, these kinds of comments cause them to lose trust in us. There will come a time when they’ll realize that, no matter what we’ve promised, we can’t protect them from everything.
The unexpected death of a loved one, a bad grade, the betrayal of a friend… Of course we don’t want to see our little ones suffer, but there are a lot of things we can’t control. That’s life. Sometimes you fall and have to get back up, struggle, and overcome obstacles. When children understand this, it helps them develop resilience. So, we should never try to camouflage problems. Rather, we should be sincere.
In short, as you can see, there are certain lies that you should never tell your children. The consequences can be much more negative than other types of “little white lies.”
Obviously, we should never lie to our kids, but there are some issues that are more complicated than others. What’s more, they have greater consequences. So, now that you know which lies can be the most damaging, you should avoid them for the sake of everyone.