Parents know that feeling when they realize their kid’s room has been dead silent for a while. The infinite amount of what if’s crosses your mind, and sooner than you know it, your body is in a race against time. Chances are, upon opening the door, you may have caught your beloved little daredevil in action.
So parents on Twitter who have experienced a fair share of close calls and deliberate stunts that were too far ahead to be stopped are sharing their experiences.
From a child who sneaked a baby penguin out of the zoo to a dad hearing “trust me, this is a good idea” from his kids’ room only to have the fastest sprint in his life, you wonder how on earth these sneaky adventurers came up with such ideas.
If you have kids in the house, chances are you are no stranger to their sneakiness. Sometimes their stunts are purely spontaneous and born out of boredom, other times they’re elaborate and pretty alarming. And even though some sneaky behavior seems essentially harmless, it’s always better to set the boundaries with your child to make sure their behavior doesn’t escalate.
First off, every parent should see sneaky behavior as something that happens for a reason. Your teen may try to test boundaries—like fudging the actual time they returned home for curfew—to see how much control they actually have over their own lives. In these cases, our little daredevils are quite simply testing us to see how far we allow them to go.
Kids are incredible observers, whether we realize it or not. So the best way to teach them not to indulge in sneaky actions is by being honest yourself. If your little one detects your dishonesty, (and trust me, they do!) they may lose their trust in you and not see being sneaky as somewhat of a big deal.
This can be as simple as fabricating a lie when you don’t want to tell your kid the truth, or prefer to avoid possible questions. But the next time you attempt preaching honesty, they may well remind you that you’re not very good at it either.
Another way of solving sneaky behavior is not being overly reactive. You may be tempted to lose your temper, but this won’t lead you far. Instead, you may want to address the behavior by giving your child an opportunity to explain themself.
You may also want to look for solutions and agreements so that sneaky behavior, e.g. a $5 bill that’s gone from your wallet, never happens again. What if you discuss ways of helping your kid to earn that money and make the unpleasant situation into a teachable moment?
It’s incredible how much we learn simply by talking to our kids without underestimating them. Ask them how they felt when doing wrong and whether they regretted it or not afterwards. At the same time, it’s also helpful to remember that kids often don’t realize how much their lies can hurt us. In this case, you may be expecting too much from them, and you want to start the conversation by addressing the problem from the very bottom of it.