Have you ever lied to your kids? Probably. (And if you say you haven’t, you’re probably lying to us now.) We’re by no means justifying telling major untruths to your little guys, but sometimes a little white lie is an essential tactic of parenting survival. Behold, eight times when it's totally cool to fib.
When They Ask a Question Wiser Than Their Years
“Where do babies come from?” “What’s an autopsy?” “Why does Jenny’s dad sleep in the guest room?” If you’re not prepared (or don’t think your kid is emotionally ready to handle the truth), it’s totally fine to tell a small fib. For instance: Where do babies come from? The hospital, of course!
When You’re Teaching the Importance of Manners
Your quirky Aunt Martha knit your son a sweater that's by all counts hideous. But you're not going to say that. If he says something about not liking it later, gently tell him that when someone gives you a gift, the polite thing to do is to be nice about it, even if you don't really like it.
When Their Drawing Isn’t Museum-Quality
Sure, everybody resembles deformed sea creatures in your kid’s family portrait, but telling him it’s anything short of wonderful could stifle his creativity.
When They Ask About Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, etc.
C’mon, you’re not a monster. (See also: “Santa can see what you’re doing,” which is kind of creepy but very effective.)
When Junk Food Is Involved
You’re in the kitchen sneaking a quick snack from your secret chocolate stash when your daughter walks in. You have our full permission to claim the “chocolate bar” you’re munching on is full of vegetables and vitamins.
When They Ask What a Sign Says
Sure this only works until they learn how to read, but until then, how are they to know that the produce signs in the grocery store don’t say, “No fighting,” and “Listen to your parents”?
When You Bring in the Big Guns
What is it about perceived authority figures that make kids so obedient? Even if the offense has nothing to do with school, slipping in the old “I’d hate to tell Mrs. Johnson about this” should do the trick.
When Their Loudest Toy Is Driving You Insane
Oh no! Mom forgot to buy batteries. Sorry, guys…