4 Answers

Hello I wonder if some Mums can help with some advice. We have an 11 y/o daughter who likes to tell tales. They are not nasty or vindictive or anything like that, but they do seem a far fetched when she tells us these stories. When we’re sure it’s one of her stories eg: like the other day she told us 2 of her friends at school each had 90 cats. When both her brother and I said come on that’s not true. She is fair dinkum that it is and we don’t really pay it much attention, we just tell her we don’t believe her.
Today her teacher asked me to have a private chat with her. She told me when the class was asked what they had done during the holidays, Miss 11 y/o said that she and I went to Germany on a trip for 5 days. When the teacher questioned her and said 5 days, Miss said yes. “Just me and Mum, brother and Dad couldn’t go.” She was very set on her story being right. Apparently when she tells these tales she doesn’t make eye contact with anyone. For this tale that the teacher told me about, which of course, Miss 11 y/o, denied, we have banned her from any computer for the weekend. Has anyone got any other ideas what we can do about this to nip it in the bud. We thought not paying it any attention would do the trick but obviously not.
The teacher said in all other ways she is a great student and has lots of friends.
Any help please. Thanks in advance.

Posted anonymously, 6th May 2016

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  • It might be a confidence issue. Maybe she feels she needs to make up or embellish stories to in order for people to like her.
    I remember doing this as a child, the kids around me seemed to always do more exciting things, so I would make up stories to fit in with everyone else.
    My Mum sat me down and explained to me that I didn’t need to make things up to be liked, and that my true friends would like me for who I am.

  • I’ve not experienced this. For older children making up stories is often to get out of a punishment! And at younger ages it can be intelligence and exploring imagination, when reality/fantasy lines are still being worked out. But for the older child who isn’t avoiding punishment I think it can be a sign that they want to be popular, need confidence built, or want to be good at something and are competing with peers to come out on top (eg making up most elaborate holiday story). Don’t know if any of that might apply but whatever the cause the advice is to let them know,in private, that there can be disastrous consequences of telling tales like that, bragging about things that are untrue (if nothing else it is going to make other children feel jealous or left out and might impact friendships).


  • Maybe explain to her the story of the boy who cried wolf.. It is really that if something bad was to ever happen and she told a trusted person, That they would never belive the story.. That telling tales is a bad way to make friends that they can loose trust in a person who tells stories..
    Maybe encourage her mind and tell her to write her stores in a book. But not to tell them as if they happen in real life.. But make sure you go out of your way to read them if she does.. even make them into a little book.

  • Signs of a very creative mind lol. But very testing just the same. I guess,naps she’s not bring mean, nasty or vindictive it’s not really a massive problem. And the stories are so far fetched, you guys can easily pick it. Hopefully she’ll grow out of it

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