Honesty is the basis for any relationship. Your daughter may lie to get attention or is trying to avoid punishment. Parents often don’t know how to handle dishonesty or issue the proper discipline technique when it comes to lying. The reaction is harsh and the discipline doesn’t address the problem. Here are some ways to teach your daughter to be truthful and issue healthy consequences.
Talk about reality and truth and how they are different from pretend, fantasy and make believe. It takes a lot of courage to tell the truth for any one at any age. It doesn't always come natural, so it’s the responsibility of you the parent to teach your daughter to be brave enough to fess up. This is another life skill she will need to know however, this skill will depend a lot on you.
Tell your daughter how important it is that the family can count on each other telling the truth even if it’s difficult. And that once the trust is broken it will take some time to build it back up. Parents try not to make the mistake of confronting your daughter angrily with threats and punishment. This will only encourage her to lie more. Make her living environment safe and you are guaranteed honesty.
As a parent you have to not only model honesty in your words – but in your lifestyle. In other words don’t just teach her about honesty, live it yourself. For example, if your daughter should ask you an awkward question, be honest. It doesn't matter how embarrassing or awkward it may be – be brief and age appropriate. Give her examples of how in working with people you are placed in awkward positions – but you are still honest. Let her know that because of your honesty people can trust and depend on you. In turn, you are given responsibility because of your trust.
Yes, you can give your daughter consequences for lying, but she needs to know that there is a benefit to being honest. Let her know that you appreciate her honesty. The ultimate goal is to create an open environment where there are no secrets and your daughter feels comfortable being truthful.
These suggestions should go a long way in ensuring your daughter tells the truth. These skills will encourage her to grow into a person that can be depended on and trusted.
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