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How should we change our son's habit?

Q: I have a 7 years old son. He is a very hyperactive child. He cannot sit with his lesson for more than 15 minutes. All that he likes to do is watch cartoons. After school he is at the baby sitters place. My problem is that my child is developing the habit of telling lies. When confronted for the first 10 times he denies the truth and after sometimes he says yes he has done it. We never force him to take the blame on himself. Only after being hundred percent sure do we ask him this question. We have tried shouting and at times given him a little patting so that he does not continue it. For the first one or two days after the scolding, he tells the truth but then gets back to lying after some time. Please tell us what should we do to control this habit.

A:Please observe the situations when your son does not tell you the truth. Are they something for which you would have scolded him? Even if you are not strict, may be his baby sitter tells him that you will be angry if he does not do the right thing. He probably wishes to protect himself. It is not a very bad habit, as you say. Children are not always aware of the seriousness of the practice going on into later years. You must develop other strategies to make him be candid and truthful with you. But do so with a light touch and a gentle manner, not as if he has committed a crime. Instead of focussing on his being obedient and well behaved, try to focus on his being happy and relaxed. There may be a shift in his behaviour.

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