He did it again. Ugh! I don’t know why but middle school seems to be a difficult transition for Tyler. I think the stress of more responsibility is taking a toll on him. I admit it is a huge adjustment but it is a necessary one. We have been trying to help him out as much as we can. One thing that has gone up is his lying. The Husband and I have caught him in a number of lies this year. Mainly ones pertaining to him losing things. We have been getting on him about losing important items. Trying to encourage him to be careful with his things and keep a watchful eye on them. I already told you about one occasion when he told a big lie on two gym teachers at his school. If you haven’t read it then you can read about it here. Well guess what it happened again.
For the past two months Tyler and his class were working on a polar bear project. They had to answer questions about how global warming affected polar bears. They had to answer the questions on index cards. Now The Husband and I both made sure that he answered all these questions. There was a total about 10. He completed the questions over Thanksgiving weekend. He was suppose to turn them in that Monday. Well Monday came and I checked his work and signed his cards like I do with all his homework assignments. Then I told him to put the cards in his book bag. I walk him and Nishe’ to the bus stop. I come home and go in my bathroom and right on the floor are Tyler’s cards. So when he gets off the bus that afternoon I ask him if he was missing anything and he goes no. I said are you sure. He again responded yes. So I noticed he just wasn’t getting what I was asking him so I went with the more direct approach. I asked him if his teacher had taken up their cards or at least looked at them. He said that she hadn’t so I went ahead and spilled the beans because if she didn’t check them then he had no reason to look for the cards. I let him know that he had left his cards at home. When we got home I gave them to him and told him to put them away.
So I thought everything was good. Well that following Friday he came home and told me that his teacher took his cards to let another student use to get the questions. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary to me so I said okay. He was suppose to get them back Monday. So when Monday came and he went to school I reminded him to get his cards from his teacher. Later when he came home from school he told me that the teacher told him that his teacher informed him that she had lost his cards. He said that she had told him that the cards were sitting on her desk and when she came back they were gone. So he had to do the questions again. I asked him how he was suppose to do the questions again and he said that she told him that he would have to ask other students to help him get them because she couldn’t put the questions up again. I am starting to get suspicious. I don’t want to accuse my child of lying even though he has a history of it so I am just going with the flow to see how this turns out. So for the next four days I ask him every day if he has the questions. At first the project is due on Friday but then the teacher extended it to this past Monday. Well Thursday came and my son still only had about six questions. So he was missing four. I asked him what he was going to do. Oh I left something out he also told me that he had told The Husband about all of this. So I sent The Husband a text telling him that I was going to call his teacher because of what happened and that if his story was true that she couldn’t expect him to turn in a good paper without the questions and that he needed to get the questions if she wanted good work. I told him that Tyler told me that he had told him what was going on so I didn’t bother to mention it again. I tried to call that afternoon but everyone had gone for the day. He asked me why I waited so long to call the teacher. I said that I wanted to show Tyler that I trusted him and didn’t want to call him out for lying until I had to see what was going on. See my theory is that Tyler needs to learn to handle situations such as this on his own. Because I want him to know he can handle it. So I didn’t immediately step in. So when it got down to the wire I decided to step in. The Husband decided that the next day he would go speak with Tyler’s teacher but unfortunately she wasn’t there. So Tyler wrote what he could over the weekend. He had no other choice but to write from what he had. When he came home that Friday he had gotten two more questions and then he remembered one more over the weekend and then he turned in what he had on Monday.
Monday morning I called the teacher anyway because I wanted to let her know what Tyler had told us and why his work was going to be lacking. I also wanted to hear her side of the story. As we all know there are two sides to every story. I wasn’t surprised at what she told me. It sounded just like my child. She told me that on Friday that she walked down each row and checked the students cards and that Tyler had his at that moment. She said she simply picked up the cards checked them and then put them down. She said at no point did she collect anyone’s cards for any reason. She then told me that Tyler came back to her either Friday afternoon or Monday morning and told her that he left his cards in class. So she let him check to see if his cards were still there and they weren’t so she suggested he ask other students for the questions. So once again he lied. This was the other reason why I didn’t interfere I wanted my son to say you know what mommy or dad I lost my cards. The most his Dad and I would have done was to put him on punishment and remind of the importance of keeping up with his things. Which is what wound up happening anyway.
I asked him why he chose to lie and he said that he didn’t want to get in trouble. I asked him did he accomplish what he wanted to accomplish and he said no. I explained to him that if he keeps choosing the lying route he is going to damage a lot of relationships that he has and he is going to make people not to deal with him. I told him he already changed ours because now if he tells me something I have to question whether it’s true or not. I also told him that lying makes his consequences even worst and longer. I just want for him to see that he needs to work on becoming more responsible and that we understand he makes mistakes sometimes. Mistakes are apart of growing up. He had to go and apologize to the teacher the next day.
How do you handle your children when they lie?