Our 5-year-old son has been telling lies. Most of the time he admits to them when we are questioning him. How do we punish him for lying without dissuading him to confess the truth as he has been?
First, I recommend that you sit him down at a time of calm and find out what your son understands about lying. After you identify this, without preaching, clarify any misconceptions. Then, inform him of the consequences should he tell a lie. That way you are giving him a choice – to lie or not. The consequence is going to depend on his economy, which you and Dad will have to figure out. Most important is that you and Dad do not interrogate with “why” questions. Also, avoid trying to get him to tell the truth by asking him if he lied when you know he did. Just tell him what you know and then stand firm with the consequence. Do not consider this as a solution and give up if it does not work in a prescribed amount of time.
This is a family values issue and at his age, your focus should be to model what you stand for and teach personal responsibility.
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