Lying is typically used to refer to deceptions in oral or written communication. Other forms of deception, such as disguises or forgeries, are generally not considered lies, though the underlying intent may be the same; however, even a true statement can be considered a lie if the person making that statement is doing so to deceive. In this situation, it is the intent of being untruthful rather than the truthfulness of the statement itself that is considered. (Source: Wikipedia)
A lie-to-children is a lie, often a platitude that may use euphemism(s), that is told to make an adult subject acceptable to children. A common example is “The stork brought you.”
We are often embarrassed by our children; it is one of the many occupational hazards that are attached to the job of being a parent. Children are notoriously indiscreet and will spill family secrets indiscriminately. There is, for instance, a teacher in Cape Town who has it on good authority that Old Spouse and I dance rather energetically some Saturday nights and that, on one occasion; a wine glass was kicked over.
Another story that did the rounds in Cape Town was the story of how Original Bunn was born. She happily confided to her class that her mom and dad ‘knitted her with love’ and that ‘when the knitting was long enough, they took it to the midwife and she sewed it all together and made a Bunn’. No amount of protests to the other parents would assure them that she had never actually seen us ‘knitting’.
Today I am going to do the unthinkable thing; I am going to lie to my child. A letter came from school yesterday, highlighting the upcoming family sports day, specifically the involvement of parents in the ‘fun activities’. There is a section that calls for entrants in, amongst others, the Mom’s Hurdle and Sack Races.
I have proven myself a good parent by dutifully fulfilling my tuck shop duties, but I cannot and will not Hurdle and Sack. Ever.
So I have wrapped my ankle in an impressively thick bandage and will limp to fetch her from school just now. My ankle will remain sore, perhaps to make a miraculous recovery on Saturday night. Just in time for a bit of dancing…