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3 Bumps

Do you encourage your kids telling on each other?

I had that debate with their dad today.
My older kids are 6 and 7 and they usually don't tell on each other, they prefer sticking up for each other.
Their dad noticed that someone had painted on the wall behind the door of my bedroom and he assumed it was DD. He asked who did it and non of them answered. So later he told our son "if it was you sister, tell me. You don't want to take the blame if it wasn't you, do you??"

Poor DS said "she's done it for me too" so it was like saying "she did it" without realizing!!

So anyway, my point is, I love how they always stick up for each other. It drives me crazy sometimes when I'm trying to figure out who should get punished, but I love how they prefer to get grounded too instead of telling on each other!

Their dad thinks it's better for them to learn to tell on each other so we can know who's more likely to do what rather than be uncertain of who did what.

What do you think?

Answer Question

Asked by evie-1006 at 9:13 PM on Sep. 29, 2010 in General Parenting

Level 8 (222 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • I only have one child but I would not encourage them telling on each other.

    When my twin sister and I were kids whenever we told on each other we both got grounded. I was usually the one who got grounded for doing something I was not supposed to and my sister got grounded for telling on me.

    When we got a little older we knew how to stick up for each other and how to keep each other's secrets. It's one of the reasons we have such an amazing relationship IMO.

    Answer by mygirlpaige at 9:15 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

  • I don't encourage it. I think teaching kids to tattle is a bad idea. It could create potential issues with not being liked in school, for instance. As an adult it may sound minor, but I remember being a kid and seeing other kids miserable because they always told on the other kids. My kids would rather both get in trouble than fess up and tell me who did it, or admit to any wrongdoing.

    Answer by Ginger0104 at 9:17 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

  • I encourage them to stick up for each other. No tattling. UNLESS someone is bleeding, broken or dying

    Answer by matthewscandi at 9:23 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

  • That's a horrible guilt trip to lay on a child. "You don't want to take the blame for something she did, so tell me if she did it." First of all, your son shouldn't be taking the blame just because the other kid didn't confess to it (or he didn't tell on her.) Secondly, you don't put that kind of pressure on a child to tattle on anyone, or even to fess up to something they did. I don't agree with how their father handled that at all.

    I would trust my children to come to me if it's something serious. "Hey mom, I think Jill is pregnant." "Mom, I think she's at Joe's house instead of Julie's" .. Those kinds of things. If it comes down to coloring on the wall, eating all the junk food, or something such as that then either the right kid confesses or they don't. It'll get found out either way, but I don't want my children to feel obligated to rat each other out. The child who did it should confess, not be tattled on.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 9:27 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

  • My kids are still pretty little, but my oldest has no problem blaming everything on his little brother. It's rare that kids would stick up for each other. I like it that they do that. I would not encourage tattling.

    Answer by lowencope at 10:17 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

  • My 3 kids are teens now but we've always taught them not to tattle unless not telling could cause someone to get hurt. I want them to be able to count on each other.

    Answer by ceallaigh at 10:19 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

  • I only have one child so I don't really know. I know she tells if someone hurt her (like a little boy biting her today) but usually she doesn't.

    Answer by justduckie_mom at 10:40 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

  • We greatly dislike when the tell on each other. We prefer to hear the truth from the responsible child. We also don't want them to run tattling to us every time one of them looks at the other cross-eyed.

    Answer by Orionsgirl at 10:51 PM on Sep. 29, 2010

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