I’m sure there are more than 10. When I tell another 10 I’ll call it “10 More Lies I’ve Told My Children.” And then the third post might go “Another 10 Lies I’ve Told My Children.” I had a set of books when I was younger. I had a black godfather (yes shock horror, expecially in the days of apartheid). And everytime he visited he would bring me a book. I love books. I always have. He gave me all 5 books in the “Tell me Why” Series and they were like gold to me. I read them from back to front over and over. I digress.
The point is we tell small little lies to our children every single day. FOMO 1 called me out last night about it.
FOMO 1: You’re telling her (FOMO 1) such lies.
Me: parents tell their children lies all the time
FOMO 1: So what lies are you telling me?
Me: None. It’s only reserved for small children and to save my sanity.
FOMO 1: You’re such a liar!
Me: I call it creative thinking and it avoids tears. Sometimes a small white lie saves me from hurting her feelings. Do you want your sister in tears and whining and complaining?
FOMO 1: No
1. “If you don’t get ready you’re going to school as you are.” As much as I don’t care about sending FOMO 2 to school with her pink pajamas, hair and teeth not brushed, I wouldn’t. It’s only happened once and we got to her nursery school and she suddenly decided to get changed in the car. Her hair was done, she’d had breakfast and her teeth were brushed.
2. “If you don’t stop fighting/whining/crying/hitting, we’re going home.” I only make this threat if we’re going somewhere nice, to play, to a playdate, to a restaurant, to buy new clothes. There’s always something in it for them so of course they don’t want to go back home. I have gone around the block and FOMO 1 got a fright and stopped the bickering behind me.
3. “If you don’t stop you’re not going to the party.” I love this one because it works for about a week before the party and on the day. Not once have either of them NOT gone to a party. FOMO 1 generally doesn’t usually believe me these days but she still treads on the side of caution.
4. “If you don’t eat your food you’re getting it for breakfast, lunch, dinner etc.” This never happens because they always get new food and I end up with containers full of half eaten food that no-one wants and we can’t do anything with that end up getting thrown away 2 weeks from now.
5 & 6. “The shops didn’t have any.” That ‘whatever’ it is that you wanted from the shop. I did remember. They did have it. I just didn’t want to buy it for you. Next time we go to the shops they insist on coming with. FOMO 2 now knows the layout of our local store and will make a point of showing you they have it and starts whining about why I didn’t buy it. The next lie is “They didn’t have it the last time I was here.”
7. “If you don’t get into bed NOW you can go to bed on your own.” Usually I end up walking out, back in, out, in, so now I just do a lot of threatening. The most I’ve done is not read a bedtime story because “now it’s too late and if you wanted a story you should have gotten into bed earlier.” It means so much for them to say goodnight so I would never leave them to scream and cry themselves to sleep. FOMO 2 wouldn’t anyway. She’s kick up a storm and get out of bed and scream right in front of us until we said goodnight properly. It’s more stressful but much easier to threaten a few times.
8. “If you don’t brush your teeth they will fall out.” This has to be the dumbest thing we tell our kids. Their teeth ARE going to fall out from around the age of 6. We take her to see Rise of The Guardians and there’s the tooth fairy. Now we have to explain that, yes you must brush your teeth everyday, and even so, they are still going to fall out but it’s a good thing because you will get your big teeth and then you can be big like mommy and sissy. Lies. Luckily the dentist saved me and complimented her on having such beautiful teeth.
9. “It hasn’t been 5 minutes yet.” It’s been about 15 minutes but you can’t tell the time yet so I’m using this until you can tell the time. This is reserved for when a parent doesn’t want to do something, go somewhere, wants to read a bit more etc.
10. “5 minutes is up.” Time to get out the bath. It’s probably been about 2 minutes and 10 seconds you can’t tell the time yet so I’m using this until you can tell the time.