Post # 17
@TexasSpringBride: For a child that has abandonment issues, I would NOT consider spanking. It could make the lying worse. Especially at her age – 11 is too old for that.
Did the therapist come up with any other ideas besides explaining lying is wrong and taking her things away? I do not see how either of those things help at all with pathological lying. Does this therapist have a lot of experience with kids? I might consider seeing a different one.
Have you tried positive attention/reinforcement? That worked extremely well with some of my students with behavioral problems. They didn’t lie a lot, but they did lie sometimes and were also violent and antisocial. Positive reinforcement worked wonders for them, but it does take awhile, at least a semester.
+1. OP, I agree with this. An alternative school, military school, or a tour of a juvenile hall could do the trick. It’s worth trying, if nothing else works.
Post # 18
What about if you start a journal. Everytime she lies she has to write a detailed report of the following.
1. what was the lie
2. who did it effect, what were the negative outcomes
3. why did she do it
Take that to the therapist, maybe you can find a pattern of thought or behavior. Maybe if she sees it in her own writing she will realise what she is doing is wrong. Or it’s just a great punishment because you are calling her on it AND your forcing them to write it down. Stuff is just worse when there is a physical record of it
Post # 19
We have tried that. The school would like to do that but because the allegations she makes are things that are illegal they have to investigate regardless because if they dont they could be held liable and school policy requires them to investigate every allegation against a teacher and student.
We have done the ignore it…if we ignore her, she ramps it up and then we get calls from the school
Post # 20
Or I know juvi/parole officers have programs that are used for kids convicted of crimes but some you can opt into. I think it would really make her feel like what she is doing is wrong.
Post # 21
What do you mean by obnoxious? Honestly, it sounds like the most effective action is to take attention away from her. I’m talking in very specific, concrete ways, not just generally giving her less attention. She’s too old for bedtime reading, but as an example one punishment could be not reading to her on nights after the lies come up. Also, I think apologizing face to face to people might actually be enforcing the behavior by giving her the attention she craves. If that’s what you’re doing I mean. Maybe instead of face to face time, making her sit down ALONE somewhere in the house and writing out letters would work better…?
It’s sad for the other kids to miss out on the same one on one time. I understand she needs the help, but I feel like it might be creating future problems with the other kids. Is there a way to make it a little more balanced? My parents totally treated my brother and I differently in that I got more praise while he got more stuff. We both resented missing out on the other thing, and it didn’t lead to good things. ((Hugs)) What a tough situation.
Post # 22
This was my first thought as well. That if you start spanking her, she might report that you’re being abusive.
I dont have any suggestions though. I’m not a parent and the only experience I have with kids has been toddlers. I wish you luck though.
Post # 23
Something you said bothered me, she gloats that you give her more attention???? Do you think maybe she might be getting too much attention?? I know it goes against everything your therapist has told you, but it kind of sounds like she needs to be taken down a notch. I would ignore her negative actions completely and ignore her completely when she does them (it seems like it is the only thing that she values enough to be taken away, give her the silent treatment for a couple of hours when she does something bad, tell her that even though you love her you are very angry amd disappointed in her and do not want to see/speak to her until dinner or breakfast). And when she does something great then praise her for it and shower her with attention. I’m not a parent but that’s just my impressions on the situation.
Post # 24
@TexasSpringBride: My sister pathologically lied as a little kid. She’d just make up dumb stories for attention. May parents spanked her whenever she did, and eventually she stopped.
I understand a lot of people don’t like the idea of spanking, but my three siblings and I were all spanked, and we have all turned out just fine. Your daughter is doing things that could destroy lives. If this continues, in addition to getting others kids sent to juvenile detention, it could land her there as well – and if that happens, it will hurt her much more than a spanking. She does not seem to understand what negative consequences feel like, currently, so you need to try whatever you can to stop this.
ETA- after reading some PPs comments, I think they have good points – the spanking might result in her lying that you’re beating her, at least at the moment. And since she loves attention so much, completely ignoring her when she lies or does bad things, while giving her attention for good ones, might work out well.
Post # 25
This would be great as a part of a character education program for her.
OP, could you bring this idea (and others suggested here, even if you’re already doing them) to her school counselor? I think the counselor might come up with better ideas than the therapist.
Post # 26
These are things we are doing with her to correct the behavior.
Withholding items of value to her. She wanted a computer, we have taken it from her.
She has an Ipod and we have withheld it from her. We have taken her Xbox.
We have a goals board. When she reaches certain goals she receives a treat to something. She chooses the treat. We do it on a weekly basis because according to the therapist a month is to long to make her wait for the treat.
We praise her constantly for doing good things.
We spend tons of time with her one on one.
She gets individual teaching in class designed especially for her educational and emotional needs. The therapist consulted with the special educators to tailor make her classes.
Post # 27
🙁 Sorry 🙁 Seems like you guys are doing everything right! Wish I could help.. I can’t imagine dealing with this. 🙁
Post # 28
She is too old for a spanking. At this point, it would be considered abusive and give her even more issues. Also – I know you won’t want to hear this, but a step-parent should NEVER spank. You are not her parent. Her father is, and he doesn’t believe in spanking. It is time you drop this idea. I don’t disagree with spanking, but 11 is far too old for that. Please do a little research on other possible methods of discipline. Best of luck
Post # 29
What about some sort of activity too? Community service or a sport? I agree a counselor may have better ideas or be able to refer you to another therapist that specializes in this.
Also when I get in trouble as a kid my parents took away my door, that was pretty awful. Just as a general idea for punishment.
Post # 30
@TexasSpringBride: Do not spank her. That’s the last thing she needs.
Post # 31
You all have made some wonderful suggestions, We are attempting them all. The therapist already consults with the school about her emotional needs.
I made her write a letter to the sub who was relieved from duty and even that didnt help. She came into the living room while writing this post to justify her actions.
We really have tried to ignore outburst and her exaggerated behavior, it just seems like if we give her attention she gloats about it. If we take it away from her constructively she ramps it up til its out of proportion. This is what happened at the family get together. No one was paying attention to her and she told a lie that could have sent some kids to juvi and their parents to jail.
Im just at wits end. DH is at wits end.
Someone mentioned sports or an activity that she maybe likes to do.
She has been in drama class, she had done plays, she was cruel to one little girl when she didnt get her way that we had to withdraw her because on stage in the middle of the play the girl was stumbling over her lines and our dear daughter called her stupid in front of 100 people and told everyone in the audience she should have gotten the main part and that the little girl stumbling over the lines proved her point. We were mortified.
We signed her up for soccer, that didnt go well because she didnt make a goal she was hysterical for a week afterwards and refused to play anymore.
We have made her write sentences,
We signed her up for tennis and then shit hit another child with a racket because he didnt let her serve first. She continued to act up and the coach refused to coach her.
We have to think of things for her to do because she gets angry easily and either refuses to play or becomes so hysterical that she is uncontrollable.