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Fibs, Lies And Half Truths

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I don’t know what happens in your house, but at this time of year the anticipation of Christmas really starts to ramp up.  I have no one but myself to blame for this given the extent to which my wife and I have lied to our children.  We took the decision that we would continue the tradition of Father Christmas in our house.  In my wife’s case, this included creating footprints in fake snow in our hall last year so that our children believed “he” really had been (my wife failed to spot the deliberate mistake that the footprints lead to and from our front door.  Mind you so did our children fortunately or that might have prompted a difficult conversation). 

This year I am embarrassed to say we have taken it a stage further.  When our children misbehave, we point to the house alarm sensor in the room and when this flashes we say it is Father Christmas watching and they need to behave or they will not get any presents.   My eldest son has decided that he should cut out the middleman and so now holds up the toy shop catalogue to the sensor and points out which of the toys are on his list. 

All this makes me wonder about the whole “when is it okay to lie to your children” question.  Some things are apparently okay, because they “preserve the magic of Christmas”, while others are not, but where do you draw the line?  Just as importantly, why do we get so hot under the collar when our children lie to us.  After all, we can hardly complain, if in our case our youngest child denies all knowledge of who wrote in pencil all across the kitchen cabinets, despite him being the only child in the house at the time, when we have propogated a huge lie ourselves (and mostly to ensure good behaviour for a month or two).

Posted: 02/12/2013 15:24:56
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