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We’ve all done this. Lie that is. Come on now – be honest. Don’t lie about it. In the course of our lives we have all had the opportunity and have probably taken advantage of that opportunity to tell a little-white-lie or two or three. Is that a bad thing? Maybe – maybe not. It depends.

I believe it’s okay to tell that little-white-lie so as not to hurt someone’s feelings. You know what I mean. When your very best friend asks if you like her new haircut, outfit, or the choice of restaurant she picked for the two of you to have lunch, your answer is quickly stated with a fake smile and “I love it!” All along  you are cringing at the thought of having to eat at that restaurant, seated across from the haircut from hell, in  the outfit that doesn’t fit! What is she thinking?

It’s even okay for your husband or significant other to say, “You look great!” when you know you have put on a few pounds in all the wrong places. This is a very safe little-white-lie. It makes you feel better and he doesn’t have to sleep on the couch!

So when is it not okay? Consider these points that I actually have heard second-hand from H.  So yes, I do know what I’m talking about.

  • It’s not okay to send an email to your child’s teacher saying Billy won’t be able to make that scheduled mandatory rehearsal tomorrow afternoon because he has other family obligations when Billy really has talked said parent into covering for him!
  • It’s not okay to tell your teacher you missed a performance because your Grandmother passed away – and she didn’t! Poor Grandma. 😦 (What ever happened to ‘The dog ate my homework’?)
  • It’s not okay to skip an afternoon  rehearsal because you were sick when you just left the class thirty minutes earlier with no signs of sickness, a smile on your face, and your girlfriend/boyfriend waiting in your car!
  • It’s not okay to send an email or text saying your child missed rehearsals last week because of sickness in the family when he really was goofing off with his friends!
  • It’s not okay to say, “We were out-of-town for that performance” when you child was really at home babysitting the younger kids for you!
  • It’s not okay to say you missed the performance because you didn’t have a ride when you never really tried to get one!
  • It’s not okay to say you didn’t know there was a rehearsal because you don’t get the emails! (Yes you do and it’s written on the board and talked about in every class.)

Is it really okay for parents to send out these messages to their children that it okay to lie? The majority of those ‘little-white-lies’ in the bullets up there were from kids. They had to learn from someone though and it’s usually from the parents. The first time you tell that little-white-lie is when your child takes it and runs with it – all the way through life!

Think about it next time you pick up the phone to call or text or open you computer to send that not-so-true email. Is this really what you want to teach your children? Is this the way to make them responsible adults? Will they even know what accountability is from your actions?

Okay, I’m done with my rant and I feel better. 😉 When was the last time you told that not-so-true little-white-lie?









About Elle Knowles

Elle Knowles lives in the Florida Panhandle with her husband and off-at-college-most-of-the-time son. She has four daughters, one son, and eleven beautiful grandchildren. 'Crossing the Line' is her first novel. The sequel 'What Line' is a work in progress. Recently published is Coffee-Drunk Or Blind - a nonfiction story of homesteading in the Alaska wilderness with her parents and four siblings, told through letters by her mother and remembered accounts from the family.

11 responses »

  1. Lying is a weird social device. If you say, I don’t want to, you get in trouble. So you have to come up with excuses to get out of things. I wish people could simply say I don’t want to and be done with it. When you’re lied to and you catch the person, it is a double slap in the face. It’s like they couldn’t even be bothered to come up with a good lie.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Its such a fine line between whats a little white line and whats an outright lie. your right, of course, we have all told the little white lie and its been the right thing to do. Oh what a web we weave when we practice to deceive…….thought provoking post

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Hmm, strangely once over fifty years ago. My dog ripped up the papers that were my homework. Tore them to shreds.Mostly in his dog basket and the rest like confetti all drooled over.

    I had not known it was an excuse when i told the teacher and got a surprising response in return.

    Why the dog decided to do so was always a mystery, to me. Although newspapers would get the same treatment/ So perhaps the paper was a fun thing? Always put them away after that.

    When I hear of it being an excuse, even to today. My ears burn in embarrassment. For I now know, how lame it must have sounded. … Live and learn!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ha ha, you’re too funny Elle! I remember lying my way through my teenage years, and they came back to haunt me, as I got a taste of my own medicine with one of my daughters :))

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ouch! That hurts. I still remember the first time I lied to my parents. Guilt came to live with me for a long while. And my first lie to my first girlfriend. She had a few not so nice things to say to me including Good Bye!
    I sometimes omission is just as wrong as s lie. It has same consequence. Great post Elle.

    Liked by 1 person


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