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Dealing with lying is frustrating and confusing for many parents. Unfortunately, teens and pre-teens often lie or tell only part of the truth. Kids lie for many reasons: to cover their tracks, to get out of something they don’t want to do, and to fit in with their peers. Sometimes kids tell white lies to protect other people.

Help them understand

You probably already know that teens can be very self-absorbed. Despite your teaching, they may not understand just how hurtful lying can be. It’s important to discuss this with your teen when you catch them in a lie. Calmly explain that there’s no need to lie and provide other options.

Talk about problems

Instead of coming across as the strict disciplinarian, talk to your child using a non-judgmental tone and get them to open up. Generally, lies are told to avoid an issue or to avoid hurting someone’s feelings. Explain to your child that lying hurts your feelings more than the truth would. If there’s a problem, it needs to be discussed so that a solution can be found and implemented.

Get to the root of the Issue

Keep in mind that it’s difficult being a teen. Between peer pressure and the desire to fit in, your teen may result to lying to avoid conflict at school. If you feel that your teen is lying as a result of trying to fit in, talk to them about it without shaming them.

Do not overeact

Parenting is hard work, and parenting a teen is twice as hard. These young people are stuck between being a child and an adult and they’re desperately trying to find their place. Be understanding and empathize with them. It wasn’t that long ago when you were your teen’s age.

Wondering how your child fares on the skills like managing emotions? On the Mai app, you can assess these skills, along with getting daily activities which your child can do to improve each of these skills.

Download Mai

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