Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Pants On Fire!

I don't know when children learn to lie, so I Googled it. Most sources say it's about the time they learn to speak. I'll vouch for that.

"Did you eat that chocolate?"

Big blue eyes look up at me and my pure, innocent angel shakes his head back and forth, "Uh uh."
Even has his little brother in on it.
These same sources claim that children don't even KNOW they're lying, that they are really just reacting to your body language and facial expression. Well, duh! Do you know how hard it is to get chocolate stains out of clothing?! I don't have 2 deep creases between my eyebrows for nothing, I earned them! But I beg to differ.

The early stages of lying are quite comical and so obvious, that more often than not, I would find myself pursing my lips in what I hoped would convey an angry face, not laughter suppression, and the tears in my eyes were from the deep disappointment I felt, not from holding my breath lest a giggle escape me. Case in point, someone very close to me, say as close as a brother, had a hard time breaking the bed wetting habit. My mother, frustrated from numerous loads of extra laundry loads of bedding finally threatened, "If you wet your bed again...(and honestly don't remember what the consequences were at the time, but it must have had an effect)." The next morning, faced with wet sheets and pajamas, my mother shouted, "WHY DID YOU WET YOUR BED?!" To which, my brother this close person to me said, "I didn't wet my bed...I just sweated a lot." Okay, it's plausible. But as a mother myself, we all know it's not true.

I'm pretty sure that once you become a mother, some gland in your body produces a hormone which is the human version of a lie detector. I know I have it. My mother has it. To this day she has it. I have no idea how she does it, because she lives 5 1/2 hours away, and even THEN will know when I'm lying not telling the whole truth. I used to think that if I just didn't call her for awhile, I wouldn't give myself away, but now just the absence of the phone call makes her suspicious.

It's always harder when you're the oldest too. You have no one to point the finger at, you either did it, or you didn't. Case closed. Poor Kaiden, he had no one to blame but the dogs, and I know THEY didn't do it. Someone should explain this to my husband as well, when you live with someone for eight years, I know it wasn't the dogs.

I know my youngest is lying by the how elaborate the story is. For example, I appreciate that he wants to give me flowers, I'd appreciate it if they weren't the purple flowers lining the front of my house. I've told him this several times. When I asked him why there were picked irises (I'm guessing, I don't even know what kind of flowers they are) were laying in the yard, this is the response I got:

Look at him, giving me a bold faced lie. No hint of remorse. Basically, he is telling me that lightning hit my flower and blew it off its stem. When I ask him why it isn't burnt, he tells me it's because it only burnt the green part. Also note in the video, at the beginning of the question, his eyes look down and away from me. In all my viewing of CSI and various crime shows, I know this is because he is formulating his story. He is also playing with his hands, another dead giveaway. He occasionally looks up at me with one eyebrow raised as if to say, "Is she really buying this? Because if she is, I'm going to add more detail..."

And my crime show watching has definitely enhanced my skills. I know that I can sit in the living room, see the bathroom mirror from the couch, and know exactly who is splashing water all over the bathroom floor. Don't even go there, you're already busted.

The one thing that absolutely blows my mind, and I know I'm not alone in this, is when they lie when I'm watching them do thing exact thing they are getting called out on. You know what I'm talking about. The other day, I noticed Kaiden...in my car. The window was down in the driver's seat and he was straddling the door.

"Kaiden! Don't sit on the car door, you're going to break my car!"

"I'm not!"

(What the? I'm sitting here looking at you. Seriously, how stupid do you think I am!) Shawn is standing right beside me, and I look over to verify that we are both witnessing the same thing. Shawn tries his luck...

"Kaiden, mom said get off the car door!"

"I'm not on it! I'm standing on one foot."


Do they learn it from their parents? Absolutely. But we tell WHITE lies. We tell the neighbor boy from 7 blocks away that we're eating supper and Kaiden can't play, because he's 3 years older than my son, and he really only comes over to play video games.

We are super quiet when the Schwan's man comes, because as much as we'd really love to buy some ice cream sandwiches, we're broke.

And yes, if you ride your bicycle naked the cops will come and put you in jail.

No, mommy isn't eating the last of the Reece's Pieces. What? Open my mouth and show you? Just a sec, (hey! they were mine!)

If you don't clean your room, you won't get to stay with Grammie for a week! (Are you kidding?!)

They are also aware that if they are going to tattle on one another, the one who tells the story to mommy first, has the best chance of "winning." You try to listen to each equally as the garble story comes up in as fast as they can tell it. Analyzing each to see who is lying is nearly impossible. Solution? Punish them both.


  1. I love love love this! All so true and that lightening lie is the best one I have heard all day. (I hear a lot of lies on a daily basis!) I am going to coin the phrase it's a lightening lie - such a good lie that it's worth the trouble listening to it!

  2. oooh it doesn't change when they're older either. My son (14) disappeared to the high school, yesterday afternoon, during their graduation, he doesn't know any seniors. We knew of a certain girl he likes, so we figured that was why he went. One of his friends comes to the door looking for him so we tell him where he is. He comes home later, my wife asked who he was at the high school with and he lists a group of friends including the one that came looking for him. She even had him repeat it, before she let on that his friend stopped by looking for him, so then he decides to come clean, he was with the girl. Were we ever this clueless? Paul