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Is it normal for a 4 year old to lie?

Im not talking "wishful thinking" Im talking bold faced lies, that continue on even after she is confronted with the truth. I have explained to her daily what the truth is...Ive made it a part of our nightly chats... She is my fiances daughter, who up until we met hasnt had a mother in her life at all. Example: her teacher tells me she refused to take a nap so I asked her and she told me, after 4 times of me asking her that "I took a good nap today", I asked if she slept, she said "yes", I then told her I spoke with her teacher and she still said she napped. Its small things like this that are adding up, she has no concept and the punishments arent fazing her. Is this normal for a 4 year old to lie so much?


Asked by Anonymous at 2:54 PM on Aug. 14, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

This question is closed.
Answers (8)
  • I'm going to disagree with the parent that said you should just go along with your child when they lie and not punish them. If you let them lie to you now, it will only get worse. When my 4 year old lies to me, he knows that he's lying. I tell my children who are 4 and 5 that lying is unexceptable and I don't tollerate it. If they lie to me, and I know they are lying, they sit in time out. My 5 year old, isn't my child, but my fiance's child. Who's mother hasn't been around since she gave birth. It is stressfull when your in the position of being the (mom) to a child that isn't yours, because you don't want to overstep your boundries, but she needs to know that your the boss, and that she's not going to get away with things just because your not the parent. You still enforce the rules, and she needs to be aware that she needs to follow them.

    Answer by beckyjoe at 10:02 PM on Aug. 17, 2009

  • unfortunately yes it can daughter whos six has been doing it for a while have to just about PRY the truth out of her even when you TELL her you know shes lieing!

    Answer by blueeyedgrl2377 at 3:01 PM on Aug. 14, 2009

  • yes, it's normal. But also, a child's perception of an event is sometimes different from it. For ex. maybe she closed her eyes, rested, felt better and to her that was a good nap. When they say nap time, maybe she's see's others not sleeping, therefore nap doesn't equate sleep in her perception.

    If you want to teach not to lie, when you catch her in a lie say to her "tell me what happened and tell me the truth, if you tell the truth, you will only get a five minute time out, but if you lie to me, you will not get any cartoons today" for ex.

    This works for my kids. They know if they've done something wrong, the dicipline for lying about it is far worse than that of doing it.

    I have some friends who let their girl get away with lying, i've babysat the girl numerous times, and wow, i'm shocked at the fact that she lies soooo much. She's 7 now, and she lies uncontrollably and constantly.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:41 PM on Aug. 14, 2009

  • We use the lying= worse punishment. It doesnt seem to faze her at all. We are trying to ease up on her for other things, so she doesnt feel that she has to lie so she wont get in trouble... Unfortunately its causing some termoilal in our relationship bc my fiance thinks its very normal and I just dont feel that its normal for children to not know the difference between the truth and a lie.

    Answer by heatherette07 at 5:04 PM on Aug. 14, 2009

  • My daughter use to lie... Shes very smart for her age. (just turned 5) i sat her down and explain to her why she shouldnt lie... i also told her people wouldnt like her and couldnt trust her if she lied all the time. Then i talked about the importance of trust. Most importantly i dont lie, to her or anyone... i set the example. I reward her when she tells the truth. kids lie especially when they know theyll get in big trouble when they tell the truth. now my daughter tells the truth... And just say.. thank you for telling the truth. and so on...

    Answer by ladiesfirst at 8:30 PM on Aug. 14, 2009

  • I sure hope it's normal, because my 4 year old daughter lies all the time! Most of the time, I know when she is lying to me,and it makes me so mad! So, we just try to do our best to teach her that lying is wrong, and hope that one day she'll get it. She knows that lying to get out of trouble doesn't work, because she gets in more trouble for lying, but we reward her for telling the truth. I think it's just a kid's way of trying to have some control. Good luck!

    Answer by ginger813 at 12:24 AM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • It is okay~ I suggest that you go with it and nod your head and just say "really?" wIthout judgement or punishment, she doesn't seem to comprehend that. Continue to set good examples and she'll learn right from wrong.
    But yes, it's very common for them to make up truths.

    Answer by doulala at 2:06 AM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • ds is 3 and lied to me a few times. I told him if he is going to lie to me I'm not going to talk to him. I ignored him for an hour or two (i asked him every hour if he was ready to tell the truth and if he said no I reminded him that I wasn't talking to him. if he asked me questions I just went about my business as if he wasn't there) kids crave attention. just don't talk to them pretend they aren't there and they will get the point. give extra special attention once she does tell the truth.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:28 PM on Aug. 15, 2009