Kids Lie

Why Do Kids Lie? How To Handle A Kid Who Lies?

Updated on July 5, 2024

We all know that lying is bad and kids who constantly lie will get into problems later in their life. Do you know why your kids lie? Some children lie often because of many reasons. If parents do not identify and correct them, that will affect their future life. Let us analyzes the reasons why kids lie and also find how to deal with a kid who lies often.

Why Do Kids Lie?

Usually, most children tell white lies to hide something or for other small benefits. If they start deliberate lying, parents should correct them in a cool and calm way. If children lie about serious issues, parents should not get angry, but call and sit with them, discuss the matter and try to solve it.

White Lies

  • Cover up something
  • Check your response
  • Make a story exciting
  • To experiment
  • Get attention
  • Get something they want
  • avoid hurting feelings

Children might lie to cover something up so that they don’t get into trouble.

Kids might lie to check a response from parents or others. They want to know how you will respond to a kid’s lie.

Make a story a more exciting experiment. For example, pretending something that happened in a story was real. To get attention or make themselves sound better.

Get something they want. For example, they’ll come and ask you, mom let me have a bar of chocolate before dinner.

Avoid hurting someone’s feelings. They don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings.

This sort of lie is often called a white lie.

When do children learn to tell lies?

Children learn to tell lies from around the age of 3 years. This is when your child starts to realize that you aren’t a mind reader. So she can say things that are not true without you always knowing.

Children lie more at the age of four to six.

Your child might get better at telling lies by matching her facial expressions. So you will not recognize it at all. However, at this age, if you ask her to explain, she’ll use usually honour the lie. As children grow older they can lie more successfully without getting caught out. The lies also get more complicated because children have more words and are better at understanding how other people think. By adolescence children regularly tell white lies to avoid hurting other people’s feelings.

We all know that lies are bad and a child who is brought up without correcting all these things will turn out to be very unsuccessful in life. So let’s see what can be done to different types of lies that our children tell.

How to handle a kid who lies?

Initially, we have to encourage the truth at home itself. We have to practice and inculcate our children with the understanding that we have to stick to the truth always. You can do this by emphasizing the importance of honesty in your family or helping them to understand what can happen if they lie. You can do this in a variety of ways. You can have conversations about lying and telling the truth with your children. For example, how would mom feel if you have lied to me and if I know that you have told me a lie what will be my feeling or what will be my loving bond towards you after that, and all you can sit and casually talk to your child.

Always you cannot ask them why did you do that? why did you tell me this? Just avoid such questions. Praise your children when they own up to doing some mistakes or something wrong. I am so glad that you told me this. You can just hug them, you can just give them a small kiss. That will be very great.

Be a role model always

You should tell them like, ” do you know what happened yesterday? I made a mistake in my office but I told my boss what happened and he was telling me it’s okay we can correct it tomorrow.”

This is the way you can tell the children how important it becomes telling the truth always. Even that hurts sometimes. For example, your preschooler might say my teddy bear rock it. You could say something like this okay I was wondering why the teddy did this? When you sleep tonight I will ask the teddy about what happened actually. Like that you can handle.

Handling deliberate lying

The second is handling deliberate lying. If your child tells a deliberate lie, the first step is to let her know that lying is not okay. She also needs to know why not. For example, if she comes and tells you that she did not do this or you find her drawn on a wall, you should ask her okay, who did this? Deliberately she tells no it’s not me. So how will you handle it?

You can tell the examples like, “see how beautiful your house is. If you are drawing like this what will happen and you are telling me you have not done it. Did I do that? No. You know I have not done it. Nobody else is here. So I know it is you. Why are you lying to me? Like that you can make examples with them.

Sometimes you should do many things like making time to talk calmly with your child and tell her how her lying makes you feel. How does it affect your relationships? What might others think? Like that you can tell your kid. Always tell your child when you know that she is not telling the truth.

Try to avoid asking questions like tell me the truth, you are a liar. I know that you did it or you are lying to me like that. Don’t ever blame your children. You could instead say something like you are usually very honest I know but why you are doing like this. What happened to you? Like that you can mingle with them and ask things.

Make it easier for your child not to lie

You can start by thinking about why your child might be telling lies. For example, if your child is lying to get your attention or considering, she needs a hug or she needs your time that you are sitting with her for. She wants you to sit with her for some time and talk to her. Like that many things are there.

Lying about serious issues

The next one is lying about serious issues. Sometimes children lie or keep secrets about serious issues. For example, a child who has been abused by an adult or bullied by another child will often lie because she fears that she’ll be punished or will end up in big trouble. Usually, this happens in between the teenagers also. If you suspect something like this meaning you have to do many things to reassure your child that she’ll be safe always but tell us the truth. Let your child know that you will do everything you can to make things better.

Some children might lie frequently as part of a larger pattern of more serious negative or even illegal behaviour like stealing, lighting fires or hurting animals or something that. They have to be handled separately which could include third parties also. When something happens don’t argue with them.

As a golden rule when it might seem like no matter what you do your child keeps lying, keep praising your child for telling the truth and also tell them the consequences of lying. Your child is less likely to lie as they get older.

Reference: Dr Maithili

Why do kids lie? How to deal with a child who lies? | Dr Maithily

Kids lie – What parents should not do?

  • Never corner your child
  • Don’t label your child a liar

9 Proven Ways To Stop Your Child From Lying


Hope that you could find a few reasons why do kids lie? There are many reasons for kids lying. You should identify the real reason and try to correct them. It is necessary to make them understand the importance of always telling the truth and avoiding telling lies. Otherwise, that will affect their future life. We have discussed a few tips to handle a kid who lies. Always be calm and make them understand the importance of always telling the truth. Parents should not tell lie at home. If you lie to your kids, they will also tell lies.

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