Raising Truthful Kids

We all want to trust our children, but what do we do when they lie?

Begin by explaining to your child why lying is so wrong. Let them see how one simple lies can cast doubt on everything a person says. And make sure they understand why trust is so critical to maintaining healthy relationships — especially within a family.

friendsBut don’t stop there. Kids tend to respond more effectively to actions than to words. So explain to them what will happen the next time they are caught in a lie. And make the consequences severe and decisive.

Then comes the most important step: follow through on the consequences the next time you catch them lying. It’s also important to praise them when they tell the truth, especially when doing so may get them in trouble. Positive reinforcement is just as important as punishment when trying to change a child’s behaviour.

For more on raising truthful kids, go to the Focus on the Family website www.families.org.au

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