Home > Kids > Behavior and Discipline > Behavioral Problems > Lying > Dealing with a Child Who Lies
|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Dealing with a Child Who Lies

Elementary School Expert Advice from Barbara Potts

Q: My 11-year-old son lies to get out of trouble. Today a fire got started at my home -- he and his friend were playing with some flammable substance and lighting it on fire. He told me that he didn't know how the fire started, but his friend confessed that they were making a torch with the can of flammable liquid. What can stop the lying, and what kind of punishments will curb this behavior?

A: Your son's lying is definitely a problem. However, your more immediate problem is that he has begun to set fires and that he is lying to cover up other things he has done. You will want to get some help for your son on this issue as soon as possible. Your son's school counselor or your pediatrician can refer you to a therapist in your area who can work with him.

Honesty is one of the most difficult issues for parents. As you have seen, lying can be rewarding in itself when the person who's lying is not caught. The first task in dealing with lying is to find out why the person is lying and then help to correct the underlying reason. The therapist you contact to see your son can help you find out why he is telling lies, and then develop a plan to help stop this behavior.

More on: Expert Advice

Barbara Potts has worked as an elementary school counselor for many years. She has a BA in psychology from Wake Forest University, and an M.Ed. in Guidance and Counseling from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

7 Home Remedies to Soothe Cold & Flu Symptoms
The AAP does not recommend giving over-the-counter cough and cold medicines to children under 4, so treating children's cold and flu symptoms naturally can be the best course of action. Read about some home remedies that might help.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

11 Awesome Thanksgiving Games & Activities for Families
Looking for fun Thanksgiving Day activities for the whole family? Check out 11 kid-friendly indoor and outdoor activities that will bring your family together in the spirit of the holiday.

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!