Calling my son’s bluff

My son is lying through his teeth these days. I think it’s a normal developmental milestone, but it’s kind of annoying. Luckily, I’m getting pretty good at calling his bluff.

This weekend, we went shopping for boots. Right away, my son picked a pair that was all black, with fur at the top, and silver righting. It looked like policemen boots. It was a good pair for a decent price, but the boot was shorter than I wished and didn’t have a drawstring at the top, so I was concerned snow would poor in (when we go to the mountain), especially since his winter pants are kinda short. I made him try another pair that was also black, but lacked the fur and the shiny writing. It was slightly higher, with a drawstring at the top, but he complained the boot hurt his feet.

To be fair, the two boots of the “pair” he was given were of different sizes. Once that small issue was fixed, he still claimed they hurt, but I had trouble believing it. He had tried another pair first and the way he was describing that they hurt when he moved his foot seemed plausible. With the boots I liked, however, he was remaining vague and I was pretty sure he was lying. So I told him that it was ok, if these hurt we would not buy them, but we wouldn’t buy the other (preferred) boots either, we would wait and find some different ones somewhere else that would be comfortable to him, but still made sense to me. All of a sudden, the boots didn’t hurt anymore. Funny that!

This morning, my son got up earlier than he is allowed to (before the alarm clock turned his light on) and complained that his tummy hurt. He has been doing that quite a bit lately, and it’s really hard to believe he’s telling the truth. This morning, I was pretty sure he just wanted an excuse to get up. I told him to go back to bed. He said he couldn’t because he was going to throw up. I stood next to him by the toilet bowl for a minute and it was obvious nothing was going to happen. So I brought a bowl to his bed and told him to lie down, that it would make him feel better, and hoped I was right that he was faking it.

When the alarm clocked turned on 10 minutes later, he was strangely healed of any nausea or tummy ache. I stuck to my guns: if he had really been sick earlier, he was not going to preschool, even if now he felt better. When he asked for an extra portion of scone, I said he could not eat much since he had been feeling sick. I was really hoping my strategy would work, because if not Zak was going to be stuck with him at home all day and hate me for that! But after a long, stubborn while, it worked. He admitted that he had lied about being sick, and in exchange he was allowed to eat some more and go to preschool.

Of course, there is a danger here… he could have really been sick and changed his tune in order to go to preschool, or the boots could have really been uncomfortable but he said the opposite because he really likes new stuff. The lying is so hard to deal with! I try to explain that I can’t believe anything he says anymore because of it and he says “But it’s really real!”. But he always says that, even when he lies! So how am I supposed to tell the difference? This morning I was pretty sure I was right since I don’t think 10 minutes of lying down should have cured him if he was really sick. But it’s not always that obvious.

How do you deal with lyers?

One Response to “Calling my son’s bluff”

  1. Mireille Says:

    Pour une fille qui pensait arrêter son blogue tu as été particulièrement active dans les derniers jours! J’ai été surprise de la lecture qui m’attendait!

    Cela dit, je trouve que tu as super bien réagit pour les mensonges. Si vraiment les bottes lui faisaient mal aux pieds, il est «puni» de mentir de toutes façons puisqu’il doit endurer des bottes douloureuses. Je te gage que si c’est le cas, il va avoir eu sa leçon au prochain achat! Cependant, j’aurais plutôt tendance à croire ta version et que les bottes lui font très bien. Et pour le mal de ventre, ça demande du courage pour un enfant d’avouer avoir menti, alors je ne crois pas qu’il l’aurait fait simplement pour avoir une 2e portion. Et si cette portion le rend malade parce qu’il avait vraiment mal au ventre, il apprend une leçon aussi!

    Bref, je pense que tu réagis de la bonne façon. Lâche pas, tu vas l’avoir à l’usure!!!