Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Parent to Parent: Lies
When teaching kids right and wrong, lying is one of the big no-nos, but what happens when kids are learning to lie from their moms and dads? It's a hot topic these days after the big balloon boy lie controversy. In tonight's Parent to Parent, Seven's Lynn Martinez looks at what some call Pinocchio parents and the damage they can do to their kids.
WSVN -- As lies go, the balloon boy scam is the mother of them all. The Heene family in Colorado telling authorities their son was trapped in a runaway balloon all to get attention, and maybe put them in the market for a reality TV show.
The Heene lie was exposed by their son on national television.
Big lies and even little ones can do lots of damage to young kids.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "The trust that they have for their parents will be destroyed."
Dr. Valerie Goode says, for parents, lies are downright dangerous.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "They trust you, they're born with blind trust, and here when we lie to them, we take it away."
Even if parents tell white lies for good reasons, Dr. Val says beware. If the child finds out about the lie, it can erode the parents' credibility, weaken the child's bond with the parent, distort a child's reality and worse, lying to a child teaches the child to lie.
The damage can last a lifetime.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "You are affected. You may grow up not trusting other people because of a lie, and it can be one lie that your parents told you, if it's big enough."
And Dr. Val says, including your children in a lie sends the wrong message.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "They don't learn very good coping mechanisms. In order to grow up in a healthy way, you need to learn to tell the truth."
The Heene case is a good teaching example about lying because it shows how telling a lie has consequences.
Police: "We do anticipate at some point in the future there will be some criminal charges."
But unfortunately, for little Falcon Heene there's another consequence. He'll be known as the balloon boy for the rest of his life.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Dr. Valerie Goode
Softpedia: Parents Lie to their Children
New York Magazine-Learning to Lie