Chris and I always knew parenting would bring its joys and challenges. What we didn’t count on was parenting something with Chris’ communication skills, my logic and stubborn squared.
We have met another challenge of parenting, and probably one many parents have dealt with at one time or another. Most recently, Kari has taken to lying and lying by omission.
There’s been the generic lies about cleaning her room or doing chores. Those aren’t particularly offensive, but her crimes are advancing! Halloween night she lied about dropping the toilet paper in the toilet at her Aunt and Uncle’s house. She left it in the bathtub for a surprise instead of telling someone what happened.
When we see her drop, spill, or break something, we tell her to be more careful next time and to clean it up. She’s never in trouble for accidents as long as she tells someone if she needs help or can fix it on her own.
Unfortunately, she’s taken to avoiding responsibility this year because “it’s boring” or she “forgot”.
The latest infraction was about her hat. Last week at her gifted school, where she only attends one day per week, her hat got ripped. She came home and the first thing out of her mouth was a story about how this other student snatched the hat from her head, ripped it, tossed it back in her face and then the teacher watching recess did not reprimand the student because he said he didn’t do it. Kari also said this student frequently bullied other kids and compared him to an actual little monster at her home school.
I emailed the teacher and the assistant principal. They investigated further yesterday when the kids were back at the school. As it turns out, the student is a shy little guy who is terribly quiet.
What actually happened, you ask? The kids went down a slide, her hat came off, the hat ended up under the student, he pulled it out from under him and handed it back to Kari. It got ripped on the way down the slide or when he pulled it out from under himself – regardless, it was an accident that just happened.
I was so heartbroken when the assistant principal called me yesterday. I had to apologize for my daughter lying. I called Chris. He was mad. I was embarrassed. We both are disappointed.
Kari knows how we react to accidents. She tore her jacket recently on a trip to Lambert’s Cafe on a nail on a playset out front. Honestly, all I said was, “Oh no. Your jacket got ripped. Stay away from that piece of the playset with the nail. I’ll try to sew it when we get home.” That’s it.
All I can fathom is that she thinks she’ll get in trouble for accidents. Well, by lying about it, now she can guarantee she’ll be in trouble!
Frustratingly, she still hasn’t admitted to lying and it using her typically infallible logic for evil:
J: Kari, did you lie about what happened?
K: I think the other student’s story is what actually happened.
J: Did you lie?
K: We just saw what happened differently.
K: Both stories contain truthful parts.
J: Like what?! Your hat got ripped, [student] was there, and he handed your hat back to you?!
K: And we were in the slide.
J: (insert Charlie Brown angry squiggle)
J:Kari, you know lying is bad, right?
K: Not really. Lying is just words. How can words be bad?
J: Did [student] rip your hat?
K: When he handed it back to me it was ripped.
J: Did he rip your hat?
J: On purpose?
K: I’m not sure.
Later when Chris got home I told him the recap of all of this. He said she’ll make a great lawyer or politician.
C: (as if politician Kari in a scandal) “I didn’t smoke the cannabis, but the cannabis did enter my airway.”
In all of this, at least Chris and I found some humor. We are still trying to figure out how to handle our little mastermind though.