Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Lying and stuff

I'm frustrated.

You know that cute little guy Sam? The one I featured in my birth story? Yup, that's the one. Well he's been lying a lot lately. Any time he gets caught or questioned about something he lies right to my face.

This drives me absolutely nuts!

When he comes home from school all the kids have a snack. I usually have something yummy I've made for them, fruit bars, soft pretzels, bran muffins - or just some rasins & crackers or whatever. They all eat the snack & watch a video & then fight play together. Well, of late Sam has done this disappearing act after he finishes his snack. I usually find him sneaking more of the snack, some leftover biscuits or whatever from off the counter or candy from out of my purse. He hides behind the laundry basket or next to the couch, & gives me the innocent look while putting his hands behind his back.

In our house we require the kids to ask if they want something to eat. Yes I'll admit I'm kinda stingy & usually say no. They are served good meals (which half the time he chooses not to eat - very picky kid) & snacks & we are usually broke so we can't afford extra snacking all the time.

I get so angry! He gets disciplined every time but nothing seems to work. This is really why it drives me so nuts. I feel like I'm crazy when I have to repeat things over and over (yes I realize this is normal with kids) so much. He's been doing it for over a month now & it's gotten progressively worse. When he get's disciplined we explain that if he asked we might give him what he wants but if he sneaks it & lies about it he will get a spanking every time. (This is not the only issue he lies over, just a good and frequent example.)

My big problem is that I have a very small amount of patience for this sort of thing. I get angry, take it personally & start talking to him as if he's much older. You know, like, "why do you do this to me?" and that sort of thing.

Another problem is that this kid is extra sensitive - WAY extra sensitive. Everything seems to cut right to his heart. I know my reaction is very hard on him & I need to stop but I don't know how. We just feed off of each other. He sneaks food, I get frustrated. He lies, I get angry. I discipline, he cries. I console, he yells. He yells, I get angry. He cries & yells more, I get more angy & start making comments. It just keeps going on & on until we both need time away from each other to calm down.

I feel like such a looser of a parent when stuff like this happens. I know I have anger issues, I've had them for a long time but they've been aggrivated since we had kids. It's mostly the repeated willful disobedience that gets to me. Wouldn't it be great if they just came with a manual? I could look at the troubleshooting page, "do XYZ and the problem will stop." I'm sure my hubby could use one for me as well. But then life would be pretty boring & I wouldn't have as much to blog about :)

Anyway, I guess I'm just venting today. Gatta spew out the garbage sometime, why not make it available for the world to see?

So sorry this blog is not thought provoking, or spiritual, or funny, or well, even very interesting. I'm just a mom hanging on by a thread & trying to pull myself up.

I'd appriciate any advice you might have. Or some commiseration if you're going through something similar. But please - if you have a 'bad mommy' or 'shame on you' comment, just keep it to yourself. I'm well aware of my shortcomings, thankyouverymuch!

Have a wonderful day y'all!


Megan (FriedOkra) said...

It bugs me too. If it makes you feel any better, I confess to being a liar (to keep myself from getting into trouble with my parents) when I was a kid. It drove my mother absolutely CRAZY. She labeled me and would call me "a liar" to my face, which was AWFUL. (I do not like labels on kids, even now.) But she also punished me, time and time again, for lying, and finally I guess I figured out that the punishment for the lying was way worse than the punishment would have been for whatever I was trying to cover up.

I loathe lying now. So I did learn.

I'd try some positive reinforcement for truth-telling. I also have GREAT success with Bean by making her feel she's upholding a family code or standard, by saying, "In THIS family, we do not lie." It's subtle, but for some reason, it hits home with her, and she will often repeat things back to me that I've said OUR FAMILY does not do. (Like WE don't say stupid, or hate, or shut up, etc.)

Hang in there!

Mari said...

I read this and can so relate to it. Our oldest was such a good liar. She could look me straight in the face and spin such a tale, that I'd believe her. Then I started to never believe her, because she lied so often. We told her she would be punished if she did something wrong, but get extra punishment for lying. Also, depending on what she did wrong we would lighten up the punishment or really praise her when she did tell the truth. You'll be happy to know that today she is 25 years old and a huge blessing to us. Her lying days are behind her and she never even had to do prison time! Hang in there - it'll get better!

Sandra said...

This is like reading my own post, I struggle with the same issues with Jasmine at times and I think it's just her age right now.

IT's frustrating and it's hard to feel like you can't win with your own child, there have been many days that I feel helpless and the worst mother in the world...but then I remember, I'm human, I have feelings too and I'm learning as I go.

Don't be so hard on yourself, it's a tough time but just remember a lot of us out here know EXACTLY what you're going through and we'll all get through it together.

Here in a few years, we'll be posting on our blogs about this exact same thing and laughing about it LOL


Rebekah said...

My oldest lies too. I have explained to him time and time again and my kids know that lying is the one thing I will not tolerate.

I hate accusing him all the time but he does it so often. Working in law enforcement for so many years I have learned a few tricks on how to tell if he is lying. I usually explain that he will not get in trouble or the trouble will be much less if he tells me the truth.

But what kills me is that it is usually something stupid that he lies about. Or something simple I asked him to do and he didn't do it.

Josh has other problems so I think they I go easy on him sometimes over the issue... but I have days that I have reacted badly to his lying.

I dont know what the answer is but I guess there is some comfort in knowing that we're not alone as mothers in this issue.

Kate said...

I don't have any kids, so I don't have any advice. =( Sounds like you're nothing but a good mama, though.

Donna said...

I was a liar, unfortunately I was a liar at a much older age (High school and college) the thing that snapped me out of it. Is when my mom said she couldn't trust me. This was a shock what you won't even believe the times when I am telling the truth? Now it makes sense, then it was frustrating and I worked extra hard to tell the truth, and not get caught in another lie. I can't say if she believes anything I say yet, but I still try and only lie around Christmas, no Mommy I didn't get you the present you wanted. :)
The only advice I can give is what I do with my kids at work. If I know they are lying I give them a second chance. If (using your example) they have taken extra snack and were hiding and eating it, and say they aren't. I would say you are telling me you didn't take the snack that is behind your back? If you are telling me you did not take that snack then you will be in trouble for lying and taking the snack. However, if you tell me you did take the snack then you will only be in trouble for taking the snack and not for taking the snack and lying. Which is worse being in trouble 2 times or just once? This usually gets a truth statement and they get the punishment for the crime and not the crime and the lie.
I will pray for you, sounds like we are 2 peas in a pod, I also have anger issues and can already see my daughter pushing my buttons in bad ways in my future!

Manic Mom said...

Ahhh, just don't be hard on yourself. I think all kids tell little lies ... is it he's just sneaking food and then lying about it? Is he just really really extra hungry? How about some spoons full of peanut butter--that extra protein might fill him up!

Hang in there. : )

Julie said...

With consistency and love, you will get through this!! It's really hard to have your child lie to your face over and over again (I know, been there, done that). It DOES get better!!
I don't think you're a bad mom at all - moms who say they never get frustrated or do the wrong thing are either lying or in denial!

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