I made a decision the moment I looked into my son’s eyes to never lie to him. We talk about where meat comes from and what it means to die. We don’t do Santa Claus and won’t do the Tooth Fairy. I know that may sound harsh. That’s just the way it is. (Don’t worry: He finds magic in lots of other places!)
What I haven’t decided is if making-up stories counts as lying? I think not? Here is the situation: A few nights ago we three were deep into battle over flossing and brushing M’s teeth. He was yelping and covering his mouth with both hands anytime one of us came near. Exhausted, we watched as M darted for the door only to find S’s foot holding it closed. He didn’t notice her foot and just kept tugging at the door, getting frustrated and then, finally, giving up.
At that moment, it dawned on me (maybe on S…but let’s pretend it was me for the sake of the story): Here is a golden opportunity to change to game. So, I/we told him that the door had a magic spell on it and wouldn’t open until he flossed, brushed and said the magic words, ‘hocus, pocus, open the door-us’.
Can you guess what happened next? You are right! It fucking worked! Four nights running, we have not battled over his oral hygiene. There have been no battle of wills. If it looks like one is coming down the pike, we just invoke the magic spell and ta-da!
I realize that this story may have us crossing very close to lying territory. That part I am not so keen on. The lack of battles? Well, that I love.