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Help with son who lies

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Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 23
Location: Missouri

PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 2:57 pm    Post subject: Help with son who lies Reply with quote

I have been homeschooling my son since April. Many things are good about it and we are happier for it.

But it's exhausting me to still continuously have to check to see if he's lying, manipulating, and taking the easy way out. Ever single chance he gets, he lies to me, he tells me he's finishing a project and hasn't even started, and in most instances will do shoddy, uncreative work just to get it done as fast as possible.

This week broke me, I was sick. I am pregnant and having major sickness throughout the day, we had a grandmother die, and I have a cold. And my son took advantage of the situation. He knew the work he had to accomplish (a lighter load due to my being so ill that he only really had some straightforward work, like say, math-u-see drills he is already comfortable with and answering questions after reading). He had a printed assignment list made with Homeschool Tracker and all he had to do was just DO the smaller amount of work. Even projects and/or are more hands-on that he initiates are quickly seen as things he has to get done as quickly as he can.

He lied to me everyday and told me he had it done. He checked off the boxes on the printout. Today I'm feeling a bit better and wanted to look at the work with him and nothing was done. Not even touched. This is only one example of how he tries to just get out of things at every chance. I always make him do the work. At PS if he didn't do it, he then didn't have to and took an F. We don't do that here, he doesn't get out of it and we take a kind of Montessori view of having the work meet a level of 90% or better to be considered done.

He has read the "Teenage Liberation Handbook," he has unschooled over the summer, he has watched Sir Ken Robinson on how schools stifle creativity, I've encouraged and listened to his input on what his interests are and how we can incorporate them. He's in theatre production outside the home, he went to homecoming at our local high school, he as friends.

I KNOW this is from keeping him in public school too long, I KNOW this is the culture of schoolwork in his head. We deschooled, I have switched methods if one wasn't working (Saxon to Math-U-See was one, losing grades for now was another). I just want to figure out how on earth do you get them to stop doing the work because they HAVE to and because they are enjoying learning. I want him to stop always lying, cheating, and manipulating.

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Joined: 15 Apr 2007
Posts: 472

PostPosted: Sat Jan 23, 2010 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sit him down, ask him what solutions he can think of. Write out a contract that he and you sign about what he will do and what he will get for doing it. A daily visible mark or reward then a bigger reward which does not have to cost money. It could be a sleepover, family game night, or a day fishing, whatever he likes to do that involves his parents or buddies.

When he screws up. Take everything away that he likes. Make his getting things back dependent on getting the work not only done on time but done well. Each day he has the choice to do well and keep his privileges or to screw up and lose all of them. Do not stack up days that leads to a no win for everyone.

When he lies or manipulates give him one warning on the ongoing manipulation, then give him a consequence he won't like. The consequence should be one that helps out the family and gives back a little of what he is "costing" you in terms of stress and time dealing with him.

Or you could just let him face his natural consequences.

Here is something by John Rosemond that I also go by, you may find it interesting.

Teen Proofing by John Rosemond

Perspective Principles

1.Be assured you are a responsible parent. Otherwise you wouldn’t be bothering to read this book and so on.

2.Teens can do bad things, (even things you never find out about) and still turn out okay.

3.You are not the only force in your child’s life.

4.You can do the right thing and things may still go wrong.

The First Great Understanding for children 2-8

1.From this point on in the relationship, you, child, will pay more attention to us than we, generally speaking, will pay to you.

Parents continue to supervise the child well. They will give him all the attention he requires (which is diminishing rapidly) along with a relatively small amount of the attention the child just wants. You are now the teacher and he is not the student so he must be taught to pay attention to you, not the other way around.

2.You will do whatever we tell you to do.

He can disagree and not like it but he must obey.

3.You will do what we say not because of threat, bribe etc., but simply because we say so.

The second great understanding for kids 8-12

1.You, child, are completely responsible for the choices you make.

2.If you make bad choices, bad things will happen, not always right away, mind you, but sooner or later

3.If you make good choices, bad things are less likely to happen.

Additional tips for parents

1.Don’t try to micromanage your tween-teen

2.Control freaks are never in control.

3.Mentor parents realize that they can’t control the kid, only their relationship with the kid.


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