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Are My Grandchildren Lying?

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From a grandmother in Canada: My grandchildren ages 7 and 8 have been telling me for almost 2 years that they are afraid of mommy, my Grandson age 7 started soiling his pants, so I took him to the doctors and he said he’s afraid of mommy and she smacks them quite a bit in the head, I got the CPS involved and they sent the children to counselling. The counsellor seen the children one time and informed the children’s father the children are lying and are making stories up to get mommy and daddy back together.

I am at a loss are these children lying or is the counsellor listening to their abuser (the children’s mother). Am I worried for nothing for the past few years ? If these children are lying I can get over it, but if they aren’t how can I help, their dad suffers from clinical depression and can’t or won’t help his children.

Are My Grandchildren Lying?

Answered by on -

A.

I’m sure this is heart-breaking. It’s possible the counselor is correct. Children often do their best to try to get their parents back together regardless of the quality of their family. But what concerns me is that this has been going on for 2 years.

I’m concerned that the counselor reached a conclusion after only one interview. You didn’t tell me if you have that information directly or if the children’s parents said so. If the latter, I do have to wonder if they are telling you the truth. Parents often don’t want others to know if they aren’t adequately caring for their children or worse.

If there was only one interview, I do think a second opinion may be in order. I’m concerned about the length of time the kids have been telling you these stories and I’m concerned that the younger child is soiling his pants.

I also think these children need some professional help, regardless of the findings. Whether they are being abused or lying, these kids need some help from an experienced, licensed child therapist. If they are being abused, they need to know that they are listened to and that adults will protect them. If they are lying, they need to be helped to accept their parents’ separation and to learn that lying is not an acceptable way to manage their distress.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

 

Are My Grandchildren Lying?

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2019). Are My Grandchildren Lying?. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 14, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2019/05/17/are-my-grandchildren-lying/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 15 May 2019
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 15 May 2019
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.