I don't know if I should be laughing or crying. Initially, when this happened, I couldn't control myself and laughed. Even when I was giggling, I was thinking "What did I do wrong? Surely this is a 'C' in parenting."
This morning, I insisted that Aaron drink a full glass of water. He doesn't like water. I get that. But everyone needs to learn that there are things that need to be done even if we don't like it. So, I've been making a conscious effort to get him to drink.
Anyway, I was in the kitchen and I saw him walk out onto the deck. He goes to the edge and starts to tip his glass over but stops suddenly. He looks into the house and must have thought that he would be seen too easily. So then, I see him walk carefully down the stairs without spilling the water. I quickly tip toe out and was just in time to see him pour the water out onto the grass. He had such a guilty look on his face and I just couldn't help myself. I laughed.
And then I kinda cried inside. My baby tried to deceive me. My sneaky four year old went behind my back to do something he knew wasn't right.
If he was an adult, sneaky deception like this might translate to fraud! Things like identity theft come to mind. Criminal offenses!!
What did I do? Am I too strict? Have I shown him some example of deception? I actually didn't punish him because I was worried that punishing him might just send the message that he needs to sneak around BETTER in the future so he doesn't get caught.
On some levels, deception is 'ok'. Like, telling somebody they cooked something really nice when it was awful. I think we all do some sort of deception in our lives. Unfortunately, how do you teach a child when it is 'ok' and when it is not? The easiest way is to teach that one person should never deceive another. At least until they strengthen their own moral compass. Yes? No? Maybe?
I'll definitely be paying more attention to what I do (and of course what he does).