Where to start with easy child, who's acting difficult child-ish (again)

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Shari, Sep 11, 2009.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    easy child 2's mom messaged me last night. Her computer is broken and she didn't think easy child 2 was telling the truth about her homework assignments, she asked me to log on and check the assignments. I did.
    easy child 2 lied to us on Wed, and her mom last night, about her homework. She lied to us both about asking her math teacher for help, and told us she asked her science teacher for help, but the science teacher refused to answer her, not once, but twice.
    It is the third week of school.
    I know she has problems. She was tested a couple years ago and does have minor working memory problems, but the school did not deem them substantial enough to warrant extra assistance, nor did the docs. Behaviorally, she's ok. Typical tween and somewhat catered to/spoiled (not held accountable for much) and the junk that goes along with that, but does not seem to be particularly out of the context of "normal", when you consider at home, she gets away with this (for lying last night, there is no repurcussion with her mother.)
    She claims to "forget" anything that isn't convenient. The lie about the math teacher....first she said she talked to him, then when I reminded her that I would verify with him, she said she forgot that she didn't have time and didn't do it. She lies all the time. I don't know where to begin to discern what's her choosing to not do anything and what might be a real problem for her.
    I do have her in counseling. Is there anything more we should even try to do? We are working with a lawyer to get visitation modified so we have her more, but that is at least a year away...anything else we should look into doing with her?
  2. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Shari... I know I wasn't totally a easy child myself... And my friend has a tween female too... And she and I both did/do this. I think it's a way to try and get control over a situation where she feels out of control.

    Keep something in mind, she needs to have clear, related consequences for the lies. In our home, though it doesn't always work, we have more dire consequences for lying than for messing up or doing something wrong. Mess up? Consequence. Mess up then LIE about it? MUCH BIGGER consequence.

    Just my $0.02.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I think this is what is considered fairly normal behavior for a kid who can get away with it. If it works, they will continue to do it. After all, there is a payoff to them. They get out of doing something that they dont want to do. Or they can do it later. Who wouldnt lie? It is easier for her.

    All you can do is keep your standards and enforce your rules at your house. What happens in her other life is up for grabs. She is smart enough to know the difference.
  4. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Both step and Janet gave very wise answers.

    easy child must feel her life is almost totally out of her control and is at an age where a parent must either learn to be wily about controlling her or lose control all together. easy child is attempting to figure out what she can control and what she cannot and what methods work to control which people. It is part of what she needs to do at this age.

    She also needs clear consequences for lying. At your house you need to let her know you are disappointed that she lies to her mom, disappointed that her mom does nothing about it, and you MUST decide a clear consequence for not asking for help, for not doing an assignment, and for lying. Lying needs the big HUGE consequence. Really HUGE.

    Running laps, doing pushups, other exercise, or HARD LABOR (have her dig a hole in the back yard. Start with 3 feet by 3 feet and 3 feet deep. Then have her fill it in (maybe work compost into the soil with fertilizer so you can plant flowers there or put veggies there). After it is filled in have her dig another hole. ALL across the yard. If you plant veggies, weeding is another good chore.

    Have her wash baseboards. ANy chore that involves hard work is a good consequence. I would steer away from anything relating to animals in case she starts to resent them and/or hurt them. At least for a while.

    If it becomes to intrusive to family life, you may need to let school handle school problems. At some point it is more valuable to ignore the school problems and have family time than to wreck family time to enforce what school should be enforcing.

    I wish I had easier advice. This was given to us by a very wise therapist. It WORKED for Wiz!!!! It is one of the major changes he got when he moved to my parents. That and my dad's incessant lectures and rambling - which drive Wiz up the wall.

    good luck.
  5. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I used to actually swat for lying, but when easy child came along, I was the only one in the group willing to do it, and it wasn't helping any for my status with her...so I quit and her punishment has been consistent at our house, but not as severe as I think it should be. Lying is a big deal. I agree, its HUGE. It doesn't help her mom encourages it for stuff (they sell produce in the summer and they tell the people they sell it to that they grow it themselves, but they don't...but she has to lie for mama).

    I think I'll go gather a trailer full of big rocks this weekend. Everytime she lies, she can move the pile of rocks across the yard, unless I have something productive that she can do (and not harm with the resentment and half-hiney doing of it)...

    So...do we punish for her lying to her mom? The conversation was really between the three of us...tho via text message.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2009