How to handle lying preschoolers

Naturally, as a parent, you’d get pretty upset when you catch you’re preschooler telling a lie. You wonder what you had done wrong as a parent for this to even happen. Don’t be too hard on yourself and especially to your preschooler about this. Lying and untruthfulness is developmentally normal for a preschooler. And that means that every parent goes through it.

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When children break something, spill drinks and even hurt people accidentally, it is only natural for them to deny the fact they had actually did it because in actual fact, they never really wanted for it to happen in the first place and also, they don’t want to get in trouble for it. Best way to deal with these incidents is to disregard the fact that they had told the lie and focus on how to fix the problem. For instance, if your child spills her drink and denies it, don’t go crazy over her lying about, just grab a cloth and ask her (nicely) to help you clean it up.

However, if your child does mess up and actually admits it, be sure to praise him for his honesty. If this is practiced, it will encourage him to always tell the truth as he grows older.

Bare in mind, there is a difference between lying and making up imaginary stories. She might tell you that she was outside and she had found some dinosaur eggs and the little baby dinosaurs are inside and they can’t find their mummy and the eggs need to be put in a nest to keep warm so that they can hatch. Unless it is wrong and hurtful towards others, stories like these are practically innocent. In fact, stories like these are great for your childs’ mental development. To encourage your child even more, try asking her for more details of the story, maybe she found some rocks she is pretending to be the “eggs”, try have her draw what the baby dinosaur may look like, what their mummy looks like, where do they live? Activities like these help with expanding their imagination and also helps with their critical thinking.

To avoid and discourage less fibbing in the future, talk with your child and explain why lying is wrong and how it effects other people. Of course you’ll be doing all the talking while she looks around the room, playing with her fingers or hair. But it’s always good to make it a habit to discuss these issues with your children no matter how old they are. Developing a relationship of trust and knowing that, in the future, you child will talk to you about pretty much anything.

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