Question: my middle child tells tall tales and I can’t tell why…is it for attention? I said we would watch Mary Poppins this weekend and she says they already watched it at her school (this makes her feel important? since her sister always talks about her school) but I know they didn’t watch it so what is going on? she tells about a girl who hugged her too hard then proceeds to tell me that girl was in Disney world all week.
Rachel’s Response: Kids do go through phases where they make up stories. Usually it’s not malicious. It could be a way of her depositing into her own emotional needs accounts (like you said, it could be making her feel significant, or she could be doing it to get attention/connection). Sometimes creative kids also make up stories just because they like to use their imaginations and crave stimulation. One thing you do is talk to her about the difference between “fun stories” and “truth stories” and when it’s appropriate to use both. Then you might want to set aside a specific time where she can tell you all of the “fun” stories she wants to… and you can listen to them and “oohhh and aahh” appropriately. That way, you’re meeting some of those needs that she may be trying to fill.