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Caught DS lying. He doesn't get how serious I am about hating lies. What punishments do you use?

(68 Posts)
CrapBag Tue 05-Feb-13 17:59:07

DS has only just turned 5 so still young.

He keeps scraping his school shoes and the fronts are getting so scuffed they are in danger of ending up with holes in. After always looking after his shoes, this has been the first pair that have ended up like this. I found out he is having races at school and starting off by having the top of the shoe on the ground, then when he sets off the whole top part of the shoe is completely scraped.

They are clarks and not cheap. I don't want to go down the cheaper shoe route as I know they are not going to last 5 minutes, we are on a tight budget but I do like to get decent shoes and so far they have had no problem in lasting.

Anyway, after I showed DS a different way to start off his races, it stopped for a while. Then he started scraping them again. I took his wallet with his money that he has been saving and I told him if he didn't stop I would be taking his own money to buy new ones (although as he hasn't outgrown them yet, I won't be getting new ones but he doesn't know this). This was enough and I thought we had cracked it.

Then yesterday he had scraped them yet again. First time for a while. He was adamant he hadn't done it, swore blind he didn't etc etc. I asked him about it again this morning and he STILL insisted he hadn't (it was obvious they had just been scraped as DH had cleaned and polished them the night before and there were new marks). Then DS changed his story and said they had been scraped and he blamed another child for doing it. I asked how and he came out with some crap that definitely did not make any sense and would not have resulted in shoes being scraped. He finally told me that it was him and that he had done it through having races.

I was FUMING!!! Not about the scraping so much but the fact that he lied over and over and he blamed his friend. I took his leappad that he has just got for his birthday and I said I would be keeping it for a while as I was so angry and disappointed. I also told him it was more about the lies and blaming that I was angry about.

This evening I wanted him to tell DH to reiterate how we do not tolerate this behaviour and he was adamant he couldn't remember what we had talked about (this morning), then I left them to it and DS came out with the same crap about his friend doing it, so he carried on lying. I was so annoyed I didn't go swimming with them, something I enjoy doing weekly.

I don't know how to handle this. How do I make DS understand that he is not to lie and blame others and then even after he has been punished and we have talked about it, he denied it all yet again. He clearly learned nothing at all.

Corygal Tue 05-Feb-13 22:20:14

He's lying because he's frightened of you.

Tell him why lying is wrong. If you want him to stop, show (don't tell) him that he can trust you for next time.

MechanicalTheatre Tue 05-Feb-13 22:22:33

Agree with others. I lied to my mum all the time because I was terrified of her reaction. And once went about for 6 months with stinking shoes because I'd peed in them and didn't want to tell her sad

Still hate getting into trouble now - if a boss/friend/partner says they want a word, I cringe.

lynniep Tue 05-Feb-13 22:22:52

what everyone else said op. also ds1 also 5, is a killer-of-shoes. he went through 4 pairs in reception (including clarks x 2) and one pair in y1. I then discovered kickers. he has managed to wear these for a whole term without putting holes in them. the fronts are scuffed to buggery but a quick polish improves that. please don't be too harsh. I know its annoying and expensive but they really aren't aware they're doing it at the time. I don't like lying either, but its part and parcel of growing up x

piprabbit Tue 05-Feb-13 22:23:14

My DS has been scraping his school shoes too. I am ekeing them out by colouring in the toes with my faithful Sharpie pen.

I have no idea what he is doing to get them in this state, but I know he is having a whale of a time at school and I'm not going to upset him over something he really is too little to control. FFS - he can't even work out which way round to put his trousers and jumper after PE, let alone think through the potential for shoe-scraping in everything he does.

piprabbit Tue 05-Feb-13 22:25:30

Oh, and take a look at this video to understand a bit ore about why your DS is lying.

livealoha Tue 05-Feb-13 22:32:00

He's not lying because he's frightened of you - that's just mean

It's a developmental phase apparently

Have no idea how to make it stop

Stay calm and be 'disappointed' is my trick

Flojobunny Tue 05-Feb-13 22:37:05

Way too harsh. As for DH polishing his shoes the night before, way too precious. Who the hell polishes 5 yo kids shoes? I usually rub them over with the Clarks spongey liquid stuff once in a blue moon! DS shoes are very scuffed, who cares?

steppemum Tue 05-Feb-13 22:42:55

actually livealoha, when children are worried about the reaction they will get, they will give you the answer you want to hear so that you don't react.

when a child is frightened of your reatcion, they will not tell you the truth.

The best way to get your child to tell the truth is to be calm and not react or punish the lie.

So I would say that yes, he is lying because he is worried about op's reaction as he know that she is upset about the shoes.

I would also say though, that at 5, many kids can't actually remember what happened or why their shoes are scuffed, and also that sometimes what they tell you - their version of the truth - is real to them, so they aren't lying, but telling you their version and they don't understand that it isn't 'true'

bigmouthstrikesagain Tue 05-Feb-13 22:45:51

my ds is currently on a tech (pc wii etc.) ban til friday. He lied last week about using a rude word on a website and he tried blaming his younger sister, then this week taking and eating a 100 g choc bar (my stash!shock ) without permission, before breakfast and (trying to ) hide the fact.hmm angry

He has been given the 'we are disappointed with you' speech and the punishment to underline this, but he is 8 and in yr 4 so I expect him to have better impulse control, I cannot abide sneakiness sad

Op your ds seems awfully young for you to have such high expectations. I would ease up and keep talking to him instead of issuing further punishments or sanctions.

abbierhodes Tue 05-Feb-13 22:49:31

I'd lie to you, OP, you sound scary. sad

You didn't go swimming with him? But he still went, with his dad? So the punishment wasn't withdrawal of swimming, which would be understandable- but withdrawal of mum? Wow. Poor boy. sad

VerySmallSqueak Tue 05-Feb-13 22:49:36

I think if you don't want them to lie you need to ensure that they are not too scared to approach you.
Sometimes you need to let little things go,to show that sometimes just telling you the truth is enough.
If they have done something that does need addressing,it's also about helping them work through any consequences of their mistake.

usualsuspect Tue 05-Feb-13 22:52:10

I'd lie to you too if I was a 5 year old boy who wanted to play with his friends and was scared of scraping his shoes. You were way too harsh.get him some black trainers and let him play.

BeaWheesht Tue 05-Feb-13 22:54:18

You need to learn to pick your battles.

Why did he lie? Because he knew you'd kick off. He didn't want to lose his money - fair enough IMHO especially considering he's been remembering up until now not to do them.

Maybe think about the fact he's little, he's at school, he's learning new things and he's trying to establish himself in his peer group - stop making him worry about something like shoes fgs, seriously.

You will run into a whole heap of trouble if you don't allow him to feel confident and comfortable enough to come to you or dh, honestly, iiwy I'd be feeling pretty guilty right now.

Fwiw I totally believe in my kids respecting their property, not lying, and I always follow any 'threat' with what I said I'd do BUT you have over reacted massively IMHO.

catladycourtney1 Tue 05-Feb-13 23:06:04

I do think that you need to teach your son that lying isn't acceptable, but I also think that five is a bit too young to expect him to worry about taking care of his shoes. Let him have fun. When he's a bit older, you can teach him why it's important to look after his things, and he can take trainers with him to play in if he still wants to do things that might wreck his smart shoes - at five, he doesn't understand that you have to work for the money to buy his shoes, so he won't understand why you're angry! I'd hate to think my five year old was too worried about the state of his shoes to be able to enjoy himself - he's got the rest of his life for things like that.

Kewcumber Tue 05-Feb-13 23:12:20

bleedin' 'ell I thought you were going to say he was 15!

who gets cross about a five year old scuffing their shoes shock ? I thought that came with the territory. buy shoes from tkmaxx or m&s perfectly good shoes and you can replace them every 6 months

CrapBag Wed 06-Feb-13 10:21:56

Thanks for your responses. I haven't read them in detail as I know what they say and I had already reached that conclusion myself. I know I am a shit mother which is why I am not reading them properly. I don't need other people to tell me what I already know.

Yes I am too harsh on him and I do recognise that he was probably too scared to tell me. I admit I was not quite as angry with him about the scraping as my post sounds. I typed the post when angry about lying and blaming someone else (it was more the blaming).

PostBellumBugsy Wed 06-Feb-13 10:29:05

Crikey CrapBag steady on. No one said you were a shit mother. There was just a general view that kids scrape their shoes, so there are probably better battles to pick.

The more angry & cross you seem the more likely a little kid is to lie, because at the end of the day they want to please you. They want your love & they don't want you to be cross with them & punish them.

No one is saying that your DS should be encourage to tell whoopers, but sometimes you have to not back kids into a corner - so that they feel like they have no option.

Take a breath & please don't think that you are a shit mother - but do read through all of the advice.

IndiansInTheLobby Wed 06-Feb-13 10:33:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

steppemum Wed 06-Feb-13 10:34:58


You are not a shit mother.

We all have our moments and I also find it very frustrating when something that costs money gets trashed. The fact they can't understand that I can't replace it and there isn't any money to fix it, actually makes the frustration worse.

It is good at times to post on places like mn. It gives us some perspective and allows us to see ourselves through others eyes.

When it works at it's best, we reassess and use the advice to find a better more constructive way of dealing with things.

Making changes in our parenting is not being shit, it is learning and growing and becoming a better parent.

If you are very upset or fragile though, then posting on here in the way you did can be very hurtful, as people will repsond to the emotion in the post.

If you had posted 'I feel like a crap mother because I shouted at ds over his shoes' you would have had a quite different more supportive response.

Don't beat yourslef up. Today is a new day, take a breath, and start again smile

DewDr0p Wed 06-Feb-13 10:42:42

CrapBag I don't think you are a shit mother.

I do think it's normal for 5 year old boys to scrape their shoes though. And I think you overreacted a bit.

I nodded a lot at There was.never any incentive to tell the truth as she went mad about everything so I always thought it was worth giving lying a try. This is what my Mum was like too. However at 5 I just think the boundaries between truth and fiction can be a bit blurred. It might be he can't really remember what happened but feels that he needs to give some account of it?

I know how rubbish it is when you're worrying about every penny. We've had situations where something has got broken - really quite minor in the grand scheme of things - but I have just felt like crying because it's yet another £30 to conjure up out of thin air. You sound quite stressed and maybe that's the real issue you need to address?

Fwiw I've got 3 boys (youngest is 5 like yours) and have learned not to worry too much about what their shoes look like, as long as they fit and are functional. Definitely look into the rubber toed ones too.

BeaWheesht Wed 06-Feb-13 10:46:40

You're not a shit mother but I think you should read the replies rather than burying your head in the sand.

PartTimeModel Wed 06-Feb-13 12:38:56

Your not a shit mother - you're a learning mother like us all! smile

PartTimeModel Wed 06-Feb-13 12:40:15

"You're" - <sigh>

MechanicalTheatre Wed 06-Feb-13 12:40:15

Not a shit mother. Just chill out about stuff like shoes, it doesn't really matter.

nevergoogle Wed 06-Feb-13 12:48:13

Out of the blue this morning, DS1 who's 8 said his friend "has just got new shoes and his mum says he can't get them dirty so now he doesn't run with me at out and about time". He said, "he's not even allowed to get the soles of his shoes dirty! that's what shoes are for!" he said.
Which strangely is what i posted on this thread earlier. Finally something DS1 and I actually agree on!

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