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My step son is a compulsive liar

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My step son is a compulsive liar

Postby Mysterious » Mon Oct 31, 2005 12:26 am

Hi, Hope you can help. My 12 year old step son is a compulsive liar. His mother was also a compulsive liar and died almost a year ago from alcohol abuse. My husband and I are trying really hard to stop his lies telling him that he'll lose friends and the respect from others if he continues to lie. His mother lied constantly about her absolutely everything. During the last month of her life she told us she had various illnesses and of course we didn't believe her and she then died. A classic case of 'crying wolf'. We've always been there for my step son even before his mothers death but now he's been living with us for nearly a year and his compulsive lying is getting us down. I take the attitude that if my kids are in trouble they are to tell me i.e. at school and I will help them all I can backing them 100% but if I find out they lied to me then it makes it difficult in the future. My step son is always in trouble at school and at first I gave him the benefit of the doubt and supported him all the way. But on many ocassions he had lied. I ALWAYS give him the opportunity to tell me the truth if he's lied telling him that he will be punished more if we find out he was actually lying in the first place. He simply cannot tell the truth! Even telling his friends some ridiculous story that he was grounded because he broke a policemans nose and got arrested! All children tell lies ocassionally, or bend the truth to get out of trouble. I have 2 children of my own and have never had to deal with a compulsive liar before I met my step son and his mother 6 years ago. I hope someone can understand what we're going through and how best to support my step son. We completely understand that he's had a difficult couple of years and that his mother was no fit example but he has his whole life ahead of him and I would hate to see him end up the same way as his mum. It seems we're forever shouting at him but we've tried every tactic to get him to stop! Please help!! Amanda
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Postby Antoninus » Mon Oct 31, 2005 9:29 am

It sounds like maybe learned behavior from his mother. Especially if his mother was the dominant personality in the house. He saw his mother getting attention becuase she told stories and learned that that was a way to get attention.

What kind of things does he lie about? I mean is it about things being wrong or to make himself look better or exagerating his accomplishments. What he lies about can be an idicator of why he does it.

Also consider that you arent his biological mother and some kids can REALLY resent that.

Lying may also be a way of coping with his mother. He felt he had no control over the world and lying was a way to make a world that he could understand and control or to reassure himself that things were in-control.
They can't touch me while I'm alive, and after I'm dead, who cares?
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My step son is a compulsive liar

Postby Mysterious » Mon Oct 31, 2005 11:18 pm

Thanks for the reply. I'm glad that there is help and advice out there. i didn't know that compulsive lying was such a common problem until I searched the internet last night in desperation.

I'm positive that my step son learnt this behaviour from his mother as for a long time it was just the two of them in his family home. She had a very poor memory which isn't good when you're a compulsive liar! I have an excellent memory which is why I could see through many things she said and my husband was so gullable. My husband and my step son's mother split when he was only 18 months old.

I met my husband when my step son was nearly 6 years old, I already have 2 children from a previous relationship and my step son was always included in all family holiday's and days out. He stayed with us Friday-Sunday every other week. He even spent all Christmas holidays with us every year. He has always been treated the same even with my parents treating him as their own grandson.

In the early days I always treated him better than my own son as he was so believable!! Whenever he said my son hit him first, did something wrong etc I believed him. In actual fact 99% of the time he was lying. My son was constantly told off by me and my husband and now I feel extremly guilty that I never once believed my son. My son had 4 years of punishment every other weekend. I only became wise to his lies about 2 years ago.

He lies about absolutely everything. Some major some minor. It's sometimes making himself out to be Mr Tough Guy, beating people up. Or sometimes he's done something really bad and when we point out that he's blantantly lying he really believes himself telling the truth. He does exagerate his accomplishments and some of his friends are now calling him a weirdo liar because they have found out he is lying all the time.

I would believe that it has something to do with his mother's death if this was a new thing. But he's always told lies even before she was ill. We have tried talking to him as a grown up explaining what the implications would be if he continued, we've tried ignoring him when he lies and sometimes we've gone completely ballistic! What do we do now? Seek professional help? I really don't understand why he does it because I catch him out EVERY time and he knows it.
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Postby Antoninus » Tue Nov 01, 2005 6:55 am

Well for starters, dont beat yourself up over the way you treated your son. You didnt know that your stepson was a compulsive liar. But I would definately talk to your son, tell him that your sorry for comming down so hard on him and not believing him. Just make him understand that you believe him now, if you dont acknowleage that, it could cause some problems later on. Trust issues and the like, he'll feel like he cant tell anything to you because you wont believe him

As far as your step-son goes, I would reccomend sitting down with him and just flat out asking him "Why do you make things up?"
They can't touch me while I'm alive, and after I'm dead, who cares?
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Re: My step son is a compulsive liar

Postby stepup » Tue Mar 01, 2011 2:55 pm

OMG, this sound like the same thing i am going true, expect my stepson mom is still alive and we have joint custody. His mom lies so much to us and the worst part is that both of them lies about his school. We find out that everytime they tell us that he is doing great, we contact the school and attend Parent/conference and look like a fool. Our son look us in the face and tell us he was on the honors roll come to find out he had C's and D's . My husband ground him all the time. But the same has being going on for over 11yrs now. We has two other children together but my 12yrs stepson is the oldest and our littles look up to him. But he is a bad example and it's hard for me to watch him, his mother and my husband accepting this behavior. What can i say or do to make things different. I am at my limit just letting our stepson lies and lies and gets away with it. He is failing school, he a lying and his real parents are not doing much about it. I know my stepson for over 9yrs and i want to teach him so much i love him and i can stand to see him go down the wrong path but i have no control over how his parent are raising him.
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Re: My step son is a compulsive liar

Postby skrduncan » Thu Mar 10, 2011 7:51 pm

I am going through the same thing!!
My fiancee's child is 12 years old. He has been living with us for a month now, and the lies are constant!! I have an 8 yr old son who lives with us, too, and I am so worried about what effect this is having on him. The 12 year old seems to have no remorse for the lies; he stumbles and bumbles his way through an explanation every time he is busted in a lie. It's disgusting and sad to watch...I was much more patient a couple of weeks ago, but now I am at my wits end at it has caused so many problems between my partner and me.

Today is the final straw as my stepson left his phone on the kitchen table and I went through it. My senses told me that I needed to see something, so I have zero guilt about looking at his texts. Turns out this morning he texted a girl he met a couple of weeks ago (who is also 12) that he was on his way to his dead brother's funeral!! By the way, he has a brother who is very much alive and well and in college. Imagine how I felt when I read that text, so I read all of them. OMG I almost wish I had not done that, but I now know that this child needs HELP. He texted to the same girl yesterday that he had just found out his brother died in a car accident and that he now wanted to kill himself. She texted back: "I'm sorry if this sounds harsh, but I do not believe you." "Why would you just text me that and not call crying to talk about it?" " Please do not text me anymore." So, this girl is on to his lies and sadly, he has lost another friend due to his habitual/compulsive problem.

I have his cell phone in my back pocket. He gets home from school in 30 minutes and I am really at a loss as to what to do now. He will ask me where the phone is, and I am not going to lie. I will say I have it, and that he is not getting it back. I have no idea how all of this go down, but I did tell his father about it a few minutes ago on the phone. His dad agrees to take the phone away and that he will be sitting down with him tonight to talk about what happened.

The thing here is, we were given 3 days notice that the 12 yr old was coming. He lived in another state with his mom and she called my fiancee to say that she was bringing the child to live with us now. I have not even been able to get used to this new way of living, and now he's a liar to boot. We really really need some advice and help...

Thank you to all who read this.
Sue
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Re: My step son is a compulsive liar

Postby headlesshero » Sat Mar 12, 2011 7:58 pm

I hate to burst all of your bubbles, but they are going to have to want to stop lying. You, nor therapists, or anyone else can make them do this. You can give them pep talks, you can scold them, punish them, but it won't work. They have to realize that what they're doing is wrong, not just because you said so. The only thing you can do is be supportive, compassionate, etc for the time being. Then when they finally tell the truth, reward them for it, no matter how good or bad the truth is. It will teach them that telling the truth gets them somewhere faster than a lie.

Also, keep this in mind, children and adults, lie for a reason. In some cases it's because they're not receiving enough attention, etc. Really examine how the child is being treated, if there wasn't a source for the behavior. Well I suppose even if there was an outside source. If it was taught to them from a parent, then you'll really just have to tough it out, and let them learn the lesson on their own. It's very difficult reversing years negative surroundings, but years of positivity and awarding good behavior can do just that.
愛し過ぎた 俺の堕天使。
一人きりの悲しみはどこに行けば殺える。
Les Misérables・・・
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Re: My step son is a compulsive liar

Postby DallasMom » Thu May 10, 2012 10:24 pm

My 12 year old son is a compulsive liar. I don't understand why. I've come across this forum today while I was looking for advice on how to handle this situation. I was seriously thinking of a boot camp to send him to. My pet peeve is liars and especially the ones I can get away from. I thought of counting down the 5 years I have left to take care of him. I tried to do reverse phycology on him but Child Protective Services says that is a form of mental abuse. After reading the last comment by headlesshero, I have come to the conclusion to just let life take its course. Who wants to birth their child in this world and watch them fall? Because our children have some type of blockage in their brains that routes them to be disobedient, we as parents have to witness our "precious babies" learn the harsh life lessons on their own.
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