Yes, I have spent a lot of time encouraging us to lie responsibly to spare our children the many ugly truths out there. And yet, I have not broached the topic of when they lie to us… and it’s never to protect poor maw and paw! They’re out to save their own hides- every time. And my demi-Hellenic children seem to be particularly crafty. Such weavers of tales, they are truly descendants of the likes of Homer and Euripides!
Of course, some lyin’ in the old apple is likely the tree’s fault… but you cannot allow your kids to pull the wool over your eyes. A ten year old who can successfully bamboozle his parents today, will at fifteen be cruising around in a Trojan horse while you sit there smiling like an idiot, thinking the Greeks should start an online gift registry.
So, take this innocent little fib one of my children tried to pull on me.
“Hey- what does homework look like for you tonight?”
“Oh… homework?” His hesitation is a dead give away. The game is afoot.
“Yeah- you know, that exciting ritual we participate in every weeknight as a family? Lots of screaming and tears involved-sometimes some learning?”
“Right, right! Weird. Don’t have any.” He shrugs innocently and continues to rub his thumbs all over his damnable smart machine, avoiding eye contact.
“Huh. That’s weird because Mrs. Harpy always assigns homework. The woman is relentless! Ruins most happy hours around this place….”
“Mom, you know her name is ‘Harper!’ Sheesh!”
“Sure, whatever you say. So let’s see that assignment pad.”
“That won’t help because I have already completed everything that’s on the list.”
“Show it to me anyway, along with the ‘completed’ homework as evidence.” He shifts uncomfortably.
“Oh, thaaat homework! Yeah, I’ll get it out. I haven’t finished it yet.”
He hadn’t finished it yet.
You have to kick the Trojan horse’s tires a bit to see if it’s hollow. Last thing you want is a houseful of Greeks. And I oughta know. My house is chock full o’nuts!