Lying!! Or...What????

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Jungleland, Jun 3, 2008.

  1. Jungleland

    Jungleland Welcome to my jungle!

    Hi family,

    Yesterday afternoon, husband had a golf date with the head boss of the company he works for, so Aly was here in the afternoon and evening with me.

    J was with Older easy child's for the day, so Aly and I had some alone time.

    My sis had purchased this cool sprinkler that the kids could run through and Aly was invited to play along with. Of course I said yes and she got into the swim suit she leaves here.

    Before going out to the backyard, I ask her if she is done with her period, or does she want to borrow a pair of shorts, just in case. She FLIPPED out, starting screaming and crying that she didn't want to lie to me. ????? So, in my confusion to this sudden outburst, I somehow get her to hear me asking what she is talking/screaming about.

    She says she NEVER had her period. I looked at her shocked, we had talked nearly every day, me sympathyzing over cramps, headaches and what a pain periods are. She went into detail with me how she took care of her sanitary needs at school and at home. This went on all week long, whenever we talked, etc.

    She told the school nurse, she told her teacher, she told her afterschool program. She shared with her Auntie, her older sister, etc.

    I am just not sure how to handle this situation at all. This isn't a usual "one lie" thing where it ends and she apologizes and pretends to learn from it. This is an elaborate "lie" or "Aly reality" that went on for a whole week and continued into last night.

    Her explanation of why she even said it in the first place was "I dunno". When I and husband said that wasn't good enough, she said she was "practicing for when it did happen". I am sorry, but this went WAY past practicing. It was right out lying and that is a HUGE no no in our family.

    I couldn't talk to her anymore last night about it, said I needed to think on this and talk with her about it in a few days.

    I mean, isn't this a very odd thing to do??? Carry on a "lie" or a delusion for an entire week. She wrapped up pads in toilet paper and threw them away all week long. husband said he never opened them up, said "why would I?", and I agree, why would we not believe that this was happening? He called me when he got home with her and checked her garbage and, sure enough, a ton of pads wrapped up with NOTHING on them.

    Last night I did tell her I was very disappointed in her not telling the truth and carrying on a lie of any sort for such a long time was unacceptable.

    Not sure what the consequences should be, going to call therapist this morning and see if she has any suggestions.

    I am so sad, how can I trust anything she says? And things were just starting to go so well with her and I. Why did she sabotage herself, yet again?

    I hugged onto her hard, told her that I loved her no matter what, but I had to be able to trust that what she tells me is the truth, always!

    Sad mamma,
  2. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I think she was "practicing for when it happened". Whether she did it due to anxiety over what would occur when it finally happened or if she did it for attention or if her grasp on reality is slipping sounds like something therapist should try and figure out. I'm sorry she lied, I know that is one of my hot buttons too.
  3. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    I agree. Reality slipping, some sympathy, delusions... who knows? I would talk to doctor. I am so sorry, it was very elaborate which is the scary part.
  4. KateM

    KateM Member

    While I agree it's imperative to speak to the therapist about this,here's my take on a possiblity. Maybe she has anxiety about this, told the first lie "to practice for when it happened" but then it snowballed and she felt swept away and overwelmed by the attention she received with this first lie. I am interested in how the therapist would handle this, because I can see this happening even with a easy child. With you not living together, maybe the attention she got and the "womanly bonding" was a difficult lie not to succumb to. I'm glad she came clean and told you the truth; that must have been a challenge for her after the elaborateness of her story.
  5. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    I'm with Kate. I think it was one of those things just snowballed out of control and she didn't know how to stop it. I truly admire the courage it must have taken for her to admit to you, her beloved mother, that she had been lying had to have been so difficult.

    This may be one of those instances where she has already dealt with consequences -- she's had to lie to many, remember the lie, keep it going and now admit it. It will take time for trust to be built back. I would talk to her, find out how she felt saying the lies, let her know how you and others feel about her having such a lack of respect for them. I think just knowing how disappointed everyone will be is going to be enough and no further consequence is really going to make a difference.
  6. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I could see it being an anxiety-related thing. difficult child 1 here has lied about stuff, even forged my signature, all because he was freaked out about a situation and that was just his way of dealing with it. TOTALLY inappropriate, but he was just not being rational. I'd definitely tackle this with the therapist.
  7. Jungleland

    Jungleland Welcome to my jungle!

    therapist's suggestion: Even though this was a pretty elaborate lie, deal with it as with any other lie. Let her know how the situation disappointed us, as we really want to trust what she says is the truth.

    Consequence is: We will have to be checking on her "stories" for a while to make sure she doesn't need help sticking with the truth.

    At first I was frustrated with therapist's advice, but the more I think on it, I think this is the right course.

    The more we make a big deal about it, the more attention she gets, negative or not, it is attention. So, just state the facts, we will be checking up on things she tells us until she can prove that everything she says is the truth.

    I feel much better after talking with therapist. I really didn't want to have to punish her for this, as it just didn't feel right.

    Boy, these kiddo's keep us on our toes, don't they??

  8. Star*

    Star* call 911

    I think.......someone at her school did start their period, and she saw that it got you some attention. Being smart she may have thought wonder what that's like or that she'd give it a try. When it DID get her attention - she liked it and was unable to stop lying.

    I'm with you - I'd have to take a few days to sort this out. This is for sure a Peter and the Wolfe story that could have an impact on your ability to believe her for serious things in the future.

    I wouldn't be upset about the fact that she was curious about having a period, but it sure does go to show you where Aly reality lives.

    I'm guessing at all this Vickie, but I think there is an opportunity to sit down with husband and Aly and speak about how dangerous it can be to lie (again)

  9. Allan-Matlem

    Allan-Matlem Active Member

    in my humble opinion the question is how can we teach our children to confide in us , to trust us especially when they screw up. When we are conditional and contingent with them for sure they wil lie to save their skins. Here there was a perfect explanation and a problem needs to dealt with in a loving and safe way
  10. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    I like the therapist's take on it. Even more importantly, that you didn't want to really punish her.

    Vickie, your posts are so much more loving and less angry -- this is more the person of old that I used to read about while I was lurking. I'm so glad to see her back.

    As to keeping us on our toes, that's putting it mildly. Time to dust off those pointe shoes if you took ballet or take it if you haven't.
  11. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    It sounds like possibly some attention was needed, and maybe some mommy bonding time, and she thought this was a perfect avenue for both. She also may have been really, really anxious - especially with only dad in the house. I remember not wanting my dad to have anything to do with me starting my period. I did the opposite, and hid it from my dad, and my sister his it from everyone. In retrospect, my sister just reversed what Aly did.

    I think starting your period can be traumatic for girls, and upsetting - and she is probably just trying to cope the best way she knows how with the pending concept of this new era in her life. I am so glad that you are not too upset about this, because I think it is more complicated than just lying.

    If she really is needing attention, maybe you can choose another thing that would forge the mom-daughter bond? Like shopping, or a manicure, or a spa day together?
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Well, heck, I posted a response and it disappeared. Not that I had a lot to offer. You've gotten some great feedback. I agree with-the therapist not to give her too much attention over it. I suspect it's just such a sensitive topic that we put more weight on it than we adults should.
  13. Jungleland

    Jungleland Welcome to my jungle!

    Hi all,

    Thanks for the responses! I had my bible study this morning with an amazing woman and she suggested that Aly maybe felt really anxious about starting SOON and felt the need to practice. So, tonight, they are coming over for a BBQ so I will try to find some time we can be alone and tell her I am supporting her with practicing and ask if there is anything else I can do to support her during this growing up time.

    I am coming to terms with my anger and falling back in love with Aly-Bo-Bally, as we call her. We still have many issues to work out, mostly me and my feelings of loss and sadness. It will take more time but I am sure it will be better in the long run.

    Living here on this horse ranch with my sister has been soooo therapeutic for me and J. I can feel myself healing daily. Not sure we can live together any time soon, but we are together almost daily and it is mostly good.

    Well, gotta go get some stuff ready for the BBQ, thanks again. I love you all!

  14. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

  15. house of cards

    house of cards New Member

    I think her consequence is that when her time does come it will be downplayed more then it would have cuz you have already been there done that, it nis amazing that she could keep it up for a week but then don't some people live with some lies for a lifetime?
  16. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

  17. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Kate, I'm glad you've had some advice from therapist that you feel helps. I agree about not punishing any further - I think this brought its own punishment. I'm with Kate (among others) in that I think this began as something small (just practicing" which got out of hand and as things like this snowball, she must have been feelnig increasingly dreadful, wondering when the bubble would burst.

    I would be talking to her about how she felt inside as the week progressed, knowing the lie was building, knowing that any attention was based on false premises. If she wants attention she needs to know she can come to you at any time and say, "I want some attention." At least it is honest. And at least she will be getting attention based on her, herself and your love for her - honest - instead of attention based on a lie.

    The fact that she cried, got upset over it - she is not a happy liar. That is good.

    I would talk to her calmly, talk about feelings and how to feel good inside even when bad things happen. Truth is always much more freeing, than trying to palm people off with a lie that will eventually turn round and bite you, when you least expect it.

    I remember when I was her age, I read a story on the theme, "Be sure your sins will find you out."
    The story was about a young girl, maybe about 8 or 9 years old, who asks her mother if she can go out to play. Her mother says it's OK, but to not go near the new house that was being built on the next block. Of course, the little girl was hoping she COULD go there, she always loved to explore the timber frame and imagine what it would be like to live there when it was finished. So she thought about it, played elsewhere for a while but found the lure of the half-built house too strong. She disobeyed her mother and went to play where she shouldn't.
    She was careful to not damage anything, she knew that it would be very wrong to do so because it would cost someone money to repair it and that wouldn't be fair. But she slipped on a beam and fell through onto the ground beneath. As she got up feeling bruised, she noticed that a long splinter of wood had come off the beam and stuck in her leg. It hurt so she tried to pull it out, but it broke off short leaving a long piece still in her leg.

    When she went home her leg still hurt but she didn't dare tell her mother, because then she would know she had disobeyed. So the little girl carried on like nothing was wrong. After a few days it stopped hurting and she forgot all about it. The house was completed, a family moved in, she ended up going over to visit a lot as she became friends with the new family's daughter.

    The little girl grew up and was in her final year of high school when she noticed a hard lump in her leg. There were also red streaks along her leg and it hurt to walk. Her mother took her to the doctor, who puzzled over it. He said, "Did you injure this leg recently? What about in the past? Have you ever had an injury where something caused a puncture wound there?"
    She had been about to say no, when suddenly the girl's memories came flooding back. She had totally forgotten about the long rough splinter from the half-built house. She told the doctor about it and he said, "OK, now we know what we need to do, I'll get treatment organised right away." And he left the room.
    The girl's mother was upset that her daughter was ill, and said, "Why didn't you tell me?"
    "I was afraid, because I had disobeyed you. And then I forgot all about it."
    The mother hugged her daughter and said, "I would have been cross but I would have made sure you got that leg seen to right away."

    The story finished with this moral: Always remember, it doesn't matter how long it takes - be sure your sins will find you out.

    Sometimes it takes a story as strong and visual as that, to make a point clear enough to a kid like Aly.

  18. So Tired

    So Tired Member

    I agree -- I think it seems to be an attention thing. My daughter had that problem with a friend at school. The friend said she had turtles and that my daughter could have one. I gave her permission and my daughter was very excited about getting her turtle. But then, every week it was something different with the turtles, they laid eggs, the eggs hatched, turtles were sick, turtles were at her grandmas, turtles were at vets. This went on for several weeks. Hmmmmm.... I finally called her Mom. No turtles. Never was. I think she just enjoyed the attention those non-existant turtles brought her. Sometimes kids just make up these things in a "wouldn't it be cool if it were true" kind of way and it is too hard to give up the attention you are getting about it....sounds like for your daughter the lie just got too big and got away from her.
  19. Jungleland

    Jungleland Welcome to my jungle!

    Thank you all and especially for the great stories.

    I forgot about the doozie my older sister told her friends when she was about 9 or 10. She told them we had a baby cow that lived in our backyard (we lived in the city!!). She kept the story going for several days.

    One day, after school a group of about 5 kids showed up to see our baby cow. My mom looked very confused and asked if maybe they had the wrong house? There was an orchard across the street, perhaps the kids meant to go over there?

    No, this is where D lives isn't it? Yes. Well, D told us you have a baby cow in the backyard and we could ride it.

    D was hiding in her bedroom when my mom called her out to address these kids. She was bawling her eyes out, so my mom told the kids, "oops, I forgot, we did have a baby cow last week but he was moved to a farm". Helped my sis save face in front of her classmates. But boy oh boy did she get a whooping when they left! LOL!!!

    I love to tease D about that to this day. She still feels horrible about it and very embarrassed!!!

    Will have to remember to tell Aly that her Auntie D did something similar around the same age and tell her about the aftermath! LOL

    Not sure I could handle things like my mom did, she is/was awesome about things like helping us learn a good lesson, but not hurting us emotionally. ya Mom!!!

    Hugs and thanks,
  20. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts


    We had the same lie from kt. She carried on the charade of having a period until she was admitted to Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Having said that, we never thought to check her discarded pads but kt's cycles were all over the place & we didn't have a clue as to the timing of her cycles.

    Once in Residential Treatment Center (RTC), the staff decided that it was time to get a grip on this ~ staff checked discarded pads & you guessed it, kt hadn't started her menses as of yet. On top of that psychiatrist ordered some type of hormone level blood work.

    To be honest kt wasn't "punished" for this elaborate story she had put together. Her sense of reality at that time was extremely skewed. therapist & attachment therapist worked with kt & it was determined that she really needed to talk about her changing body ~ her sexual awareness & just plain needed a great deal more "mom time" PLUS education education education.

    kt had education however she had questions that terrified her; it took a great deal of courage for her to bring up these questions. Once her questions were answered things settled a bit.

    When kt's period really did start (not to long afterward) kt would deny having her cycle so she wouldn't miss out on things or because she didn't want to be different from the few female peers she had.

    Really the first step is to determine if Aly really had a period or not or you may be surprised next month.