The American Calgarian

Tales of a Midwesterner transplanted in Western Canada

Would You Lie to Your Kids?

Well, would you?

“This cut is not that bad.”

“The shot won’t hurt.”

“An overweight, gray-haired man goes around the world in one night bringing presents to all children while riding in a sleigh pulled by flying reindeer.”

“Moms don’t get sick.”

We have all, at some point, told a little white lie, fudged the truth, massaged the numbers, to appease our children. It was an interesting thing when talking with friends, (it really is amazing the conversations we will have while running), when we were talking about nutrition and the lengths we will go to be sure that our children eat healthy.

I sometimes lie to my kids. There, I said it. I try really hard to be sure that they eat well, (not perfect), and work stuff in wherever I can. I purchased a book about hiding vegetables in your kids’ food and shared tricks with my friend Maggie about how to take it further. Maggie, by the way, is the master when it comes to hiding nutrition in stuff. Anyway, I have been known to puree carrots, cauliflower, beets, broccoli, basically any vegetable they won’t eat and can be hid nicely in a specific dish. Carrots are for tacos, broccoli is for meatballs, beets make a pink pancake, (not a winner in our house) and cauliflower in macaroni and cheese (again, not a winner). At first I was sneaky about this. Then, the kids caught me putting the carrots into the taco meat so I had to confess. About the carrots in the tacos. No mention has been made about the broccoli. And it will stay that way, if you catch my drift.

Another example.. I started adding flax seeds to my diet. One afternoon the kids were having some yogurt for a snack so I asked them if they wanted sprinkles. I showed them the brown seeds. Mid asked, “Are those chocolate sprinkles?” How did I respond? “Sure… but they’re so small, you’ll barely taste it.” Bingo. All three had “sprinkles” on their yogurt for a couple of months. It all ended when they saw me putting the sprinkles on my yogurt and read the bag. Darn reading and literacy education.

How we (partly) defeated McDonalds.. The last time we went to McDs for a quick meal on the run, one of my kids was a bit under the weather. I did not think much of it, really, just thought they needed some rest. It turns out he had a little stomach bug, as evidenced by his vomiting later that night. All three of the kids attributed his sickness with McDs. They asked me if it makes ME sick. I replied, “yes, fried food makes me feel yucky.” That, by the way, is not a lie, but when they asked for confirmation as to whether the fried food made their brother sick, I replied, “probably.” We have not been to a McDs since.

So, I was telling my running buddies about my little tricks and our coach asks me, with playful snark,”So, how do you feel about lying to your kids?”  I replied, “I guess, depending on the situation, I am pretty comfortable with it.” I mean, the above are little examples as to how I have gotten my kids to eat better. Moving forward, they are going to ask me all sorts of questions, and will I be totally honest with them? I just don’t know.

I am thinking of big questions like “Did you ever drink alcohol before you were legal?” “Did you have sex before you got married?” Big stuff. Should I be totally, 100% disclosure honest? Were my parents? (rhetorical question, no answer please) I stand with my initial remark, “Depending on the situation, I am pretty comfortable with it.” Now, it you will excuse me, I am off to bake brownies with nutrient-rich black beans.

So..  would you?  have you?  Discuss..

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2 thoughts on “Would You Lie to Your Kids?

  1. khourianya on said:

    So funny you should write this – I’ve been considering a similar post. Lately, we’ve found the only way to get Buggie to sleep at a decent time (she wants snuggles and to have us sleep with her) is to tell her that we are just going to brush our teeth wash our faces and put on our jammies – then we’ll crawl in with her. Funny thing…she’s almost always asleep by the time we get all that done… 😉

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