This topic sounds like its something given, something everyone knows. But, it is really surprising to me when I speak to my friends and family how “Honesty” plays different roles at home. We always vouch that people should be honest with each other and honest to yourself but we see adults lying to kids (I’m not saying all parents do, but sometimes parents do lie).
My true story:
Kids tend to lie because they are afraid something bad will happen or they will be punished for “bad” actions. For instance, my daughters Crystabelle and Catherine was playing in the tub and spilled water all over the floor. What is their first reaction? What are they thinking in their little mind? REALLY depends on the adult. When I first became a mom, I would yell and scream, punish them at the “thinking chair” to let them know that it is not okay. This method worked for to stop them for a while and have them “behave”. But what I found out is that, they start to be very scared and careful to tell me what they do. Kids will always be kids, so they are going to get themselves into trouble; we can’t avoid or stop them from doing things. They are exploring!
So rewind back, if I had a chance to go back in time. I would instead let them know, “It is alright and thank you for being HONEST with mommy. Things happen and I see it is not good for such and such reason……xxx……….but I really appreciate you being honest to me and we will take care of it.”
Ever since I let them know that it is alright when things happen to come tell me the truth, they became much happier kids and were able to communicate with me. In matter a fact, they think twice before they do something or they would ask me what I think if they did A and B. Being honest is very important because that will accompany them throughout their lives.
The next time something happens, take a little time to step back and think about what you want to tell your kids. Instead of yelling, how can you make this situation into a learning lesson? How can we effectively communicate with our kids?
I would suggest some books you can read to tell during story time so they can be interested in reading (Click here for books related to Honesty) and it would also be a good chance to hint to them about honesty; so they don’t feel as if you are targeting them every time. We don’t really need to be sitting down the kids and lecturing them every time we want to teach them something. We can have role play, story time, park time, etc. to learn and open their horizon! Learning should be fun and happy!