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Parents should embrace honesty over 'white lies'
Most parents lie to their children, but in the long-run honesty may be the best policy, according to new findings.
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A British survey of more than 2,000 people has found that 60 per cent of parents fib to their children every day, while 89 per cent of mothers and fathers believe 'white lies' help keep their kids in line.

Fifty one per cent don't even feel guilty about lying to their children as they believe it is a natural way to deal with difficult issues.

However Dr. Zoe Chouliara, a psychologist from website Click For Therapy, says that while lying to youngsters may make life easier for parents, they should make sure to tell their children the truth whenever possible.

"Although white lies might have some short-terms benefits, perceived or actual, with children, in the long run they are not recommended for various reasons," she says.

"Children tend to learn a lot through modelling. If adults are modelling deceit, lies or secrets, they are learning that this is the way to cope with discomfort, distress or challenge."

Dr. Chouliara also noted that while being honest with a child may be awkward or difficult, telling the truth can help build a better long-term parental relationship.

"Authenticity and honesty are great ways of building a strong sense of self which is at the centre of healthy relationships, health and wellbeing," she continued.

According to the survey, commissioned for The Davina Hour, a new TV show in which presenter Davina McCall investigates the pressures of modern life, moms are more likely to tell their kids to be truthful than dads.

Thirty four per cent of mothers urge their offspring to always tell the truth, compared to 27 per cent of fathers. Exactly half of moms say their reason for lying is to not upset their kids, while 46 per cent of dads lie because they believe it is in their little one's best interest.

The Davina Hour's modern-day parenting special airs exclusively on TV channel W at 10pm Sunday 1 October (17).

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