You know one of the things I really love about the Catholic church? Its stance that life is life, and that people are to be respected and cherished, from conception to natural death.
Inherent in that teaching is that children are human beings too. I remember as a child, how devastated I was each time I figured out that my parents and other important adults in my life - the same ones who always maintained that lying was bad and I shouldn't do it - had lied to me. How I was more crushed every time it happened. I'm not saying they made a steady habit out of it. Or that the lies were 'big.' But it happened enough times to really damage my trust in/respect for them (and consequently adults in general).
I had to call my mom on this at least twice while she was here. We were in the grocery store at the Deli counter. Sammy, feeling a little braver and more exploratory these days, started to walk behind the counter. Before I could say "Sammy, come back please!" (which works 90% of the time with him) she said "UNNNNNH! Don't got back there. They'll put you to work!" (Never mind the fact that he's now going to get the idea that work is a bad thing. That's another rant for another day.) Another time Sammy wanted to sit on one of coin-eating rides outside of Toys-R-Us. She asked if I wanted her to put money in. I said "No, right now he's just happy to sit on it. He doesn't need to know it moves." She said, "You can just tell him it only works when MawMaw is here."
"Don't make that ugly face. One day your face will freeze like that and you'll look like that for the rest of your life."
"Eat your vegetables so you can grow up to be strong like Popeye."
"Yes, of course there's an Easter bunny! It's just a strange coincidence that he writes just like I do."
I asked her what made her think it was OK to lie to kids. Her reply was something along the lines of "That's what we always did. We didn't think they knew any better."
Well, guess what, people! Kids are humans too, created intelligent by God and every bit as deserving of your love, respect, and TRUTHFULNESS as any adult in your life. They are not stupid, they are ignorant. You are not doing them any favors (and indeed are doing them harm) teaching them untruths about the world they live in and the way it works. Especially if right along side that you are trying to teach them that lying is bad.
Think about it.
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