A Study Found We Want Kids to Be Honest . . . But Not Too Honest

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Chattanooga, Tennessee—

If you want an honest take on something, ask a three-year-old.  Then prepare yourself for brutal honesty . . .

A new study found parents tell kids to always tell the truth. . . but don’t actually want them to be THAT honest.  And you might be sending mixed signals by PUNISHING them for it.

Researchers found it’s tough for kids to figure out the level of honesty that’s socially acceptable.  One example is opening a gift they don’t like.  Adults know it’s okay to lie in that situation, or pretend you like it more than you do.

But a little kid might say something like, “I don’t want this, it’s UGLY.”  And because we tell them to be honest, they don’t get why that’s wrong.  Then they’re totally confused when their parent gets angry or embarrassed about it.

The study also found other adults also tend to judge kids in those moments, which is totally unfair.  So what can you do about it?  Unfortunately, not much.

It takes time to learn how to navigate something as complicated as Grandma’s emotions surrounding a lame pair of slippers she thought were great.  But at least don’t hold it against them if they’re brutally honest and don’t know any better.

(Study Finds)