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My child is lying, what does it mean, what should I do?

- Lying is a normal part of child development

Things you can try

  1. Step away and breathe before you respond.

    Working out the reason for their lies is more important than telling them off about lying to you.

  2. If they’re lying to feel special or fit in, show that you understand their feelings.

    Remind them that they’re great the way they are. You could say ‘I understand why you wanted me to think you got a special award at school/scored 100 goals at football practice. But, it makes no difference to me, I already know how amazing you are.’

  3. If they’re lying to avoid getting into trouble, make it easy for them to own up. And give them lots of praise when they do it.

    That way you’re sending a positive message that being honest is brave and good. Show them how to be brave and honest too by owning up and apologising when you get things wrong.

  4. Your child is unique and we hope there are some takeaways here that work for you. If you’re looking for help parenting children with additional needs, you can get specific advice from specialist organisations. Check out our list of support that we can recommend.

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