Breakin’ the law

9 02 2006

Thursday two weeks ago, I had one of those dreaded “Parent Moments” where I received a call from the school telling me “Your son has done something very bad and we need to see you right away.”This of course, turned the short time I was at work into a circus with me having to explain why I needed to leave. Everyone else who’s a parent can understand because they all stop me to “share” similar stories about their kids.All this really does at a time like that is to make me feel like I’m a bad parent on parade. Before leaving I had to exhaust all efforts to contact my wife to meet me at home, after failing to reach her she amazingly enough happened to arrive home just after I did. We agreed that I would go talk to the boy’s teacher about what happened and bring him home. He was caught stealing a large crystal from a rock collection the class was studying. It’s understandable for a nine year old boy to do something foolish like this. However to explain where he got this rock to my wife and I was a lie that his teacher gave it him. To avoid being caught at school when asked if anyone saw the crystal, he lied that he saw someone else with it at the playground. Over a few days the teachers concern grew to where she planned to contact the cops about the missing crystal because of its value. This is when my son decided fess up, wrapped in another lie that someone made him do it. This is where the lies really become interesting. He said that an older boy who has been picking on him in the school yard told him to get the crystal, an older boy who’s been hiding in a tree, wearing a sky mask and shooting at him with a bee-bee gun. But it doesn’t end there, my son made the comment that this person has been getting him to do things for the past two years. Now, my children have very vivid imaginations, sure, but with this creation the Teacher sent my son to be evaluated by the schools counselor who advised the need for a district psychologist to review my son. At this point I feel this has gone far enough. I know my son, I talk to him and spend time with him and try to be a much better parent then the absentee that was my dad. I know this is my son’s attempt to avoid being blamed and punished. I get this. I also am not oblivious enough to bring in the circus of modern mental health to fix my son for me. But it did give me a fantastic way to call my boy’s bluff. When we got him home and sat him to go over his story for what he did and why he did it, I could be the parent of an Oscar winner for how well he stood by his story. Then very calmly I told my son that for how unbelievable his story is and the fact that the school has advised the need for professional help we were going to send him to an institution where he could get the help that he needed. The look in his eyes was priceless. Then I leaned in real close and said “This is the very last moment for you to tell the truth and not be sent away.” And with that came the confession. The remainder of the night was used to reinforce the need for truth. Yeah I know I used a lie to out his lie you have to think of it as a fight fire with fire moment. I’ve told my son time and time again that he can’t lie to me without me knowing it. Unfortunately, he’s getting better at it. I’ve discovered that parenting is just built on lies for the betterment of child raising. Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, Tooth fairy, and a long list of empty threats used in every day development are a part training children to understand the consequences of their actions. I may be a hypocrite but at least my son will thing twice before the next lie he tells.




2 responses

21 02 2006
Neal B

Well, as long as he’s not writing in wet cement, or encouraging others to do so, then I think there is still hope for him.

Seriously though, I think a lot of kids go through this phase. I did some stupid things myself, and I was always so terrified of getting in trouble that I always compounded it. He’ll get past this and in 15 years, you’ll laugh about it at family dinners.

17 03 2006

yeah…this will be funny someday. Especially if he pulls out the crystal and tells you the one he returned was a fake and him and his tree friend have been pulling off heists for years. What a great imagination. His lies to protect himself show a certain talent. Perhaps he would make a good actor?

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