Read these 42 Honesty and Trust Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Infidelity tips and hundreds of other topics.
Being betrayed by your partner is one of the worst things that can happen in a relationship. If you want to save the partnership or marriage, it is necessary to rebuild trust and gain back respect. There are some things to keep in mind to help you in the rebuilding process.
- Make a decision. If you want to save the marriage, making the decision to trust again starts the healing process. Worrying and waffling about what to do just makes things worse.
- Face your feelings and let go of the anger. Write down your thoughts and get out all of your negative emotions on paper. If you wish, burn the paper and let it go up in smoke so it is released into the universe.
- Don't forget to take care of yourself during these tough emotional times. Eat healthy, drink a lot of water, stay away from alcohol and exercise. Try to laugh as much as possible.
- Don't be mistrustful of everyone. If someone has violated your trust, it doesn't mean everyone will.
- Allow yourself to go through a grief process. Even if you work on saving the marriage, your relationship will not be the same. It could be better but not the same so it could feel like a death has occurred.
The biggest process in regaining trust is to trust yourself first. If you trust yourself, you will make the right decisions and be guided to do the right things to save the relationship.
Building a strong healthy relationship between two people takes work, but it also takes honesty. When trust is gone because of lies and deception, the relationship is probably over. If trust and honesty are so important in maintaining a strong relationship, what does it take to stay honest?
1. Integrity and self-esteem become the grounding factor to honesty in a relationship. If a person does not have integrity, lies are too easy to tell. Small lies can turn into big ones and soon the trust is permanently broken.
2. Use your instincts. Your inner voice knows if someone is lying to you or not. If something your partner is saying to you doesn't ring true, dig deeper. Always listen to your gut instinct.
3. Build an air of honesty from the beginning. Telling the truth enough becomes a habit and there is nothing to fear when the truth comes out.
4. Listen carefully to each other. Do not read things into a story that is not true. Slow down, don't assume the worst and let the full truth be told. LISTEN to your partner without speaking.
It's true what they say “The Truth Shall Set You Free”. Honesty is always the best road to take in a relationship, no matter how much the truth hurts.
When trust is lost in a relationship, more often than not, that relationship is over. Why is it so hard to rebuild trust after infidelity, lying, hidden addictions and other secrets? The bonds of marriage are considered sacred. For some, hiding a few empty beer cans is a sign that someone is not trustworthy. For others, coming home late or money unaccounted for are signs of broken trust. It's different for everyone depending on the state of the relationship.
When trust is lost, it takes a long time and hard work to rebuild and have it work long-term. The funny thing about losing trust is that it requires consistency. People are trustworthy in a relationship or they aren't. If the spouse does and says everything with consistency, there will not be any deception. When you trust someone, you can predict how he or she reacts. This predictability comes with time. If you trust someone, you rely on his or her behavior. You count on them to be a rock for you. Every rock is significant because the rocks metaphorically build a foundation to a strong relationship.
After the bonds of trust are broken, decide if you can do the work to make the marriage whole again. Ask yourself some crucial questions. Do you want to become vulnerable enough to rely on this person to be your rock again? Can the crumbled rocks of the marriage be put back together even stronger? If you cannot answer yes, it may be time to end the relationship and get on with your life.
You don't have to be a criminal to lie. Detecting deception is the main goal of law enforcement or security firms, but many ordinary people want to know if their partner is being deceptive in their relationship. According to David A. Gershaw, Ph.D. “Even trained observers do not do much better than chance in detecting deception.”
If one of the partners in a relationship fear the other partner is not being faithful in their relationship, loud bells and whistles usually go off in their head. Intuition plays a large part in detecting truth or deception about people. Stories or stated facts do not seem to ring true. Partners aren't where they said they would be or they are acting differently than they usually do. A partner may be evasive when answering questions or they may not look people in the eye. These cues are examples of people being deceptive and isn't hard to pick up on these things.
Caution should be taken when confronting a partner about infidelity, cheating or lying. The subtle clues of deception could also just indicate anxiety and may have nothing to do with infidelity or lying. Try not to accuse your partner of being deceptive before the facts are known.
There is an art to lying. People who are compulsive liars can be good at it with their words, gestures and signals. If you are concerned about whether your partner is lying to you watch and listen to what they are saying and how they say it.
- Do gestures match what is said? Does someone say “I love you” and then frown or look away at the same time?
- A lying person gets defensive quickly. A liar is uncomfortable facing questions and may turn their head.
- Lying people usually don't use contractions in the lying statement. For example “Did you go to the strip club with your friends?” The lying answer could be “No I did not go to the strip club with my friends.” The answer does not include a contraction ‘didn't' and they are repeating back the question exactly.
- Lying people are uncomfortable with silence. They feel the need to fill the quiet with made up details. This is a sign of too much information.
Another tip for catching your partner in a lie is to ask them to repeat back the entire story from the end to the beginning. If people are lying, they have only memorized the story from beginning to end and can't repeat the same story from other way.
It isn't easy for people to trust again once infidelity has been discovered. Especially in marriage, a sacred bond may be easy to break but not so easy to repair. In order to rebuild trust, try looking at the problem through spiritual eyes.
- Forgiveness is necessary in order to trust the spouse again. Forgiving someone does not mean you are saying that infidelity is ok. However, without forgiveness, there will be no trust in the future.
- Honest communication must begin. An intimate conversation about the true reason behind the infidelity helps to rebuild the trust. There are many reasons why partners are unfaithful, this is a time to be honest with yourself and then be honest with your partner.
- Accept the spouse for who they are. During the time of rebuilding trust, it is not a time to beat the spouse over the head with attitude. Be open and let your spouse be vulnerable to who they really are.
- Rebuilding trust takes time. Don't rush this process by setting deadlines. Show the spouse that you can trust them and commit yourself to a long-term process.
Partners have to want the marriage to work in order for trust to come back. When couples dig deep and do the work required to ‘fix' the problems that compelled the partner to become unfaithful, real trust can come back.
The time following the disclosure of infidelity is a delicate one, and both partners in a relationship may be feeling bruised and uncertain. You may feel concerned about future cheating, and want to implement an infidelity test or emotional boundaries. Some ideas for easing the pressure:
-- The partner who was cheated on may want to go over things again and again, asking for the smallest details of the other woman's or man's appearance, what happened between them, etc. The cheating partner should be patient with this -- it's part of a process of trying to understand what went wrong -- but should also focus on the feelings involved.
-- The partner who cheated should make an extra effort to be truthful and dependable in the smallest things. If you say you'll pick up the dry cleaning, do it.
-- Plan some extra time alone together and try to spend it having positive experiences.
When infidelity comes to light, the parter who was cheated on will likely perform an infidelity test in one form or another. It is important that both partners express appreciation for one another's efforts during this time.
People evaluate personality characteristics in potential partners before making commitments. This process of evaluation is how relationships grow and blossom. Is the person honest, trustworthy and respectful? Honesty and trust are two things that are required of most partners for a long term committed relationship or marriage.
Honesty isn't just about speaking the truth to your partner. Honesty must begin with self-evaluation and being truly honest with yourself first. People become deceptive when fear enters the picture. Take the fear out of a relationship and trust your instincts regarding your partner. Ask yourself some key questions before committing to a relationship.
- What personality type do you react well with; Type A, laid back, etc.
- What makes you angry or frustrated?
- Are you able to be yourself around your partner? Have they seen you at your worst, sick or angry?
- Do you have realistic expectations about your relationship or are you living in a fantasy world?
- Is it easy to talk to your partner and do you feel a necessity and desire to be honest with them?
- Have you learned from prior relationship mistakes?
Evaluate the answers to these questions and be honest with yourself before making a commitment to someone else.
Is your partner being honest? One way to find out, of course, is to ask. But before you jump into a confrontation or snoop around to catch a liar, it's a good idea to find out where you stand.
First, look within. Are you dealing with stress and anxiety, because of issues in or outside of your relationship? Have you been betrayed in the past? Sometimes, people who are anxious or insecure may take out those feelings on a partner, snooping and spying rather than solving the real problem -- particularly if something about the current situation reminds them of bad events in the past.
Your partner has caught you lying, and it's a big one. Maybe you've tried to defend yourself, or tried to pretend it wasn't a big deal. It's time to make some major decisions -- the kind of decisions you've probably been putting off.
Maybe this is it, it's over. If this isn't the first time, you may need to work on a pattern of compulsive lying. Yet depending on what you still have in common -- children, for example -- it may still be worth working to rebuild a degree of trust. Let's say that you really don't want this relationship to end, and that your partner is willing to give you a second chance.
Of course, you need to apologize. Do it as many times as you need to -- not just for lying, but for the hurt and pain you caused your partner.
Beyond that, though, you need to understand what caused the problem in the first place. Honesty begins with yourself. Were you dealing with feelings you didn't think your partner could handle? Were you overstressed or underappreciated? Were you just looking for some excitement?
Infidelity is happening in record numbers. Many people feel like the only recourse to discovering the truth and proving deception is checking out options such as the infidelity test. According to the International Detective Store Vice President, Bob Leonard, “A lot of men are coming in here to buy it – women too.” The test uses a drop of a chemical onto the spot in question. Generally, the bed, or undergarments are checked for suspicious substances. If the test comes back positive, it is up to you how to react.
Can you talk with your partner about how you feel? If you're angry or sad, do you feel like you have to hide that from your partner? One of the hallmarks of lasting relationships is the ability to talk about emotions, and be honest even when you're uncomfortable.
The first step is acknowledging your real emotions to yourself. It's very common for people to channel uncomfortable emotions into "safe" paths -- blowing up at home because they're worried about work, or getting anxious and jealous over nothing because of old insecurities from a dysfunctional upbringing.
Develop the skill of describing your feelings in words. "I'm frustrated because of the traffic," "I'm happy because I got a raise," etc. This is about feelings, not thoughts. You might have a thought about why the traffic is backed up, but your feeling comes from inside you. Feelings aren't good or bad in themselves -- they just are.
The next step is to reach for these words in discussions with your partner.
Infidelity is usually kept secret from partners. Many people will go out of their way to keep the partner from finding out about an affair so a habit of lying occurs in the relationship. Habitual lying is also compulsive lying. It is easier for most people to lie concerning the who, what, where and when instead of facing the music with the truth.
Fear causes people to lie. In the case of infidelity, they are afraid of losing the relationship or of judgment by their peers. The offending partner lies to the spouse, children, boss and friends. They are afraid to stop lying because they generally will feel bad when the truth comes out. Generally, one lie turns into many and the habit begins.
Since lying compulsively is a habit, breaking this habit is possible through hypnosis. This is not unlike hypnotherapy to stop smoking or gambling. If there is no therapist in your area, self-hypnosis techniques require several sessions and can achieve lasting results. However, if the lying is a result of infidelity, it will not stop unless the partner ends the affair. If there is no affair, the reason behind the lying has ended too.
If you've made a commitment to stay with someone who has lied, cheated, or deceived you, you may feel like you're entitled to demand special treatment forever. After all, you're the good person, the one who stayed faithful.
Real healing, however, comes when both parties are willing to examine their behavior and see how they contributed to the situation. Instead of being "the bad person" and "the good person," they work together to build a new and better relationship. You contributed to the situation in some way, even if it was just overlooking "red flags" early in the relationship.
At the same time, remember that neither of you is responsible for the other's feelings or choices. You own your own feelings, and can choose to deal with them in a variety of ways. You own your own choices, including dealing with the consequences. That may mean making changes even if you weren't the one who lied.
It's not always easy to do. Very few things that are worthwhile ARE easy. However, if you've betrayed someone's trust, think about what you've done. Explain to your partner that you are truly sorry for that betrayal.
The shattering of trust is perhaps the most brutal thing you can do to another person. Admitting your remorse is a step towards starting to repair the damage. You'll probably have to do it a few times before your partner starts to believe you, but saving the relationship will be well worth it. And in the end, you two will be much stronger because of it.
Your partner has cheated on your, or revealed some other form of dishonesty. You decide you want to try to make the relationship work. How do you rebuild the trust?
Your partner has to realize that he/she has created a huge breach of trust, and that it is up to him/her to help repair it. He/she should work to not put you into situations where your trust is tested, and to be, if anything, over-communicative.
On your side, it will be very difficult to work through the feelings of anger and disappointment, no matter how much you wish for things to work. Accept that it will be difficult, and that it will take time. If you are both enthusiastic about making the relationship work, it will be able to heal and come through strong.
A relationship is built on trust. If you cannot trust your partner, or your partner cannot trust you, then there is no foundation for the relationship. If a partner is capable of lying about small things, there is only his or her judgement to draw the line between those and larger situations.
Sometimes it seems easier just to lie, to get past a small sticking point. If instead you tell the truth and work through the consequences, you will find your stability is strengthened going forward.
When cheating and lying become part of a relationship, anger is almost surely present as well. It's important to recognize that the anger may have been there well before the infidelity. Maybe she was angry because of his lack of attention. Maybe he was channeling anger at his boss or his mother.
Anger in itself is not good or bad. It's just a signal, like a red light. It means "something is wrong." You have the opportunity to choose how you respond to that signal, and what you do with the energy it generates. Controlling anger -- channeling its energy productively -- is not the same thing as denying it exists.
Don't be afraid to ask for a break in a discussion with your partner if you're overwhelmed with anger or another emotion. If you are angry enough to hurt yourself or someone else physically, get away from the situation and get help now.
If it's not that bad yet, try to find a productive outlet -- maybe something physical, like exercising or housecleaning. Don't drop the discussion, though. Set up a time to talk further.
It does not necessarily take a liar to know one. There are ways to catch a liar in the act of lying or deception by watching body language and paying attention to personality changes. According to Paul Ekman , “A liar may betray himself through linguistic mistakes, but the main sources of betrayal are the emotions. Emotion reveals itself, sometimes in contradictory ways, in the voice, body and face.” If you are trying to detect infidelity and catch your partner in a lie, see if there are deviations in how your partner is acting around you. For personality traits, if they are usually quite talkative and are now very quiet, this could be a telltale sign of lying or at least hiding something. Is your partner looking you in the eye or do they look away? A general rule of thumb is for a liar to be nervous and may even perspire.
Rebuilding trust after infidelity is a two-way street, requiring almost superhuman effort. Some couples can't manage it, and ultimately go their separate ways. Even if you don't stay together, the work put into giving your relationship its best chance to recover is work that can help you avoid repeating bad patterns.
Start by keeping your promises to one another. If you say you'll be there at 7, don't think 7:15 is OK. If you promise not to bring up the cheating in front of his friends, don't do it.
You may well be feeling vulnerable now. Use this time to build genuine self-esteem by choosing a more fulfilling, interesting life. Spend your free time with people who bring out the best in you.
If you are going to discuss something honestly that can be touchy, make sure you do so in a good setting. Don't open up a difficult subject when both of you are tired, just home from work and cranky about the day. Give yourselves time to have a relaxed attitude, a clear mind and a good outlook. This will help the discussion focus on the issues at hand, and not get inflamed by an unpleasant truth into a full blown confrontation.
People lie to preserve something they value -- their self-esteem, their peace of mind, their meal ticket. So the real question is not "Why did he lie?" but "What is he protecting?"
Instead of becoming a human lie-detector test, it's often more productive to look at the overall pattern of keeping secrets. Does this person deceive family members, friends, employers? You may have a compulsive liar on your hands, someone who uses lying as a survival tool and needs significant work and help before she is ready to be truly honest in a relationship.
Hey, if you *weren't* attracted to other people I'd be worried. It's not love if you feel like this is the only person on the planet, and that nobody else would do. That's an obsession. Love is accepting this person as the one you want to be with, even *though* there are many, many other possibilities out there. There is not only one male and female in the world. There are millions. Love is about saying to a person, "even though there are many others out there, some smarter, some stronger, some faster, some more musical, YOU are the one I choose to be with because your unique qualities are what I seek".
Meeting other people in the world that you are attracted to shows you're still alive and capable of relationships. Keeping them just as friends without becoming a cheating boyfriend or girlfriend, and coming home to your partner every night shows that you still love him (or her) best of all.
Online profiles aren't necessarily honest. During your first meeting, you'll want to stay safe and have an exit strategy.
-- Pick a public meeting place you are familiar with -- bookstore cafes and coffeehouses may be more friendly than bars. When discussing the date, tell the other person you have an appointment, a commitment, something you have to do about an hour and a half after the time you agree to meet. This makes for an easy getaway if it isn't going well.
-- If you have alcoholic drinks, drink in moderation. Do not leave your drink, purse, or backpack unattended.
-- If you like the way things go, exchange business cards and make plans for a second meeting. Never get in a car with someone you don't know, or put a stranger in your car. Also avoid giving out your home number (use a cell phone for dating purposes) or address.
It is tempting, if you've done something that you KNOW will upset your partner, to want to lie to them about it. "It'll just upset him/her," you think to yourself. You rationalize that you are shielding your partner from harm by not divulging this information.
What you are really doing, though, is shielding yourself from the consequences of your actions. Your partner has a right to make his or her own decision how to act, and how to behave, and this is based on a trusting relationship with you.
Your partner deserves to have a full view of the situation to decide how to live a day to day life with you as a cheating girlfriend or boyfriend... it is up to you to be open and provide your partner with that clear, honest view.
Every relationship has rules. Most of these rules are unwritten and unspoken. When something happens to shake the foundations of the relationship -- infidelity, deception, major life crisis -- it may be time to talk about these assumptions and whether or not they still work for both of you.
Like many couples, Stephanie and Paul have an unspoken rule that they will have sex only with one another. When Stephanie stops wanting sex, Paul is understandably upset and considers having an affair. Instead, he asks her to go to couples therapy.
Over the course of several sessions, they discover that Stephanie has been affected by her father's death, which has triggered old memories of sexual abuse. She needs some time away from sex to process those old issues and reconnect with her adult sexual side. That's fine, says Paul, but what about me? They may agree to see a sex therapist, or to buy some erotic movies that Paul can watch in private.
Keeping a hurtful truth from your partner may easily backfire the next time you get into an argument. While you may keep a secret for weeks or months because you do not wish to hurt your partner with it, if you get into an angry argument over something this information may spring up as perfect ammunition. You may, without thinking, fire it at your partner as a way to wound him or her.
If instead you choose a good, quiet time to constructively talk about the situation with your partner, then you have 'defused a potential bomb.' Your partner now knows and understands the situation, and it won't be lurking in your mind if you get into an emotional argument in the future.
Sometimes it's tempting to shield your partner from painful truths - that a friend is talking badly about them, for example. However, knowing the information and not sharing it is almost always worse than shielding. Your partner is bound to find out in another way, and the other way might be much more painful than if you told them yourself in a proactive, constructive manner. You are the best person to know how to reveal information to your partner, and can choose a way that will be easiest. Other people would not be so caring, and could cause a great deal of harm.
There is a time and place for everything, and there is something to be said for not overloading your partner all at once. The first date is probably not the place to spend hours enumerating every lover you've had, and how good or bad each one was, and how you broke up with each.
It's good to explain things in stages - so your partner can get to understand the general way you are before you get into the nitty-gritty. If he first learns that your father and you enjoyed motorcycle trips often as a child, it might make more sense to him why you dated 8 bikers in a row. If his own experience with 'biker chicks' is what Playboy channels show, his view of the world and yours might differ greatly.
Take the time to lay the background and bases out - that way when you get into the details of your life, your partner has a context in which to place them.
It's happened. You've made an effort detecting deception of your partner, and you've found evidence of deception, a big one. Maybe Mr. I've-Stopped-Gambling slipped and left today's race program in the car. Maybe Ms. Fidelity was seen by a trusted friend leaving the No-Tell Motel with that guy from Accounting that she swore she didn't like.
Before you start screaming, give some thought to what you want to accomplish from this scenario. Do you want to stay with this person? Do you want an amicable breakup? Would you stay with your partner if he or she went to couples counseling and wrote an apology letter? It's possible that these decisions will change based on your partner's side of the story, but setting goals can prevent hasty decision-making.
It is probably one of the hardest skills to master, but it is also one of the most important. Try to listen to what your partner is saying without jumping in and criticizing him or her. Just listen, and accept, and try to understand your partner's point of view. When your partner is done, try to say back to him or her, "You are saying ZZZZZZ, yes?" without being critical or cynical.
You'll find that just making that effort to understand and acknowledge your partner will make a huge impact on your ability to talk to each other.
At some point as you explore each others' pasts, the talk of past lovers will come up. What should you say about them?
First off, if your current partner is jealous about your past lovers, be sure to read the tips area on jealousy. Being honest at all will be difficult if your partner is upset because of partners that are now out of your life. That is the first hurdle to overcome.
Assuming you have a trusting, loving partner, talking about past lovers can be a great way to learn more about each other. It gives you each a sense about what you liked and didn't like about the partners, what they did and didn't do that made you happy. It's a great learning exercise to help understand why you are the way you are now, and what you would like to be happy.
There's a difference between being constructively honest and being destructively truthful. If you are about to yell out "your ex always told me you were an awful lover," even if it's true, this might not be the best way to help educate your partner in becoming better in bed. Take a deep breath, think about it, and always try to phrase a honest statement in a way that has a constructive outcome.
It's easy to beat on someone if they tell you an unpleasant truth - you react harshly to the news, and take it out on the message bearer. If you do this, though, you reinforce the idea that this person should avoid telling you truths if they *think* you won't like it. This is a dangerous situation to get into.
When someone tells you something honestly, even if it hurts, step back and realize that it was probably difficult for the person to tell you the information. Remember this even in tough situation, like catching a cheating spouse. Make sure you react to the news, and not the sender ... and make sure the sender knows that you value the truth.
If you and your partner are fighting, honesty can be a brutal weapon. Saying things like "my ex was always better in bed than you are" or "Your friend told me she didn't want to spend time with you any more" might be honest, but it is incredibly painful to hear things like this in such a blunt and pointed manner.
Look through the argument tips for help keeping your arguments constructive, and do not use honesty as a whip. It will keep you both from being honest later on, if you see honesty in your relationship as something that is harmful.
You always want to be honest with your partner, but do so in a way which helps the relationship, not harms it. To tell your partner that "You might want to wear a darker shirt, it compliments your figure" works better than saying "that white shirt makes you look like a whale" ...
The way things are taken by your partner might vary greatly depending on who else is around. If you are invited to the new employee luncheon, it might be a bad time to go into your spouse's horrible snoring habits or the way he looks tubby when he wears vests. Sharing truths with others about your partner, when those truths might negatively affect the way they view him, should be done with forethought.
That's not to say you should ever lie - but there are certainly questions you can tactfully avoid. If your partner has a tendency to reveal personal items to others, sit down with your partner and explain how this ends up harming you and making you uncomfortable. "But it's true" is not exactly an answer. It's true that we all go to the bathroom, too, but you hardly sit and discuss this with your co-workers (at least most of the time!!)
Parents tell their kids to be always honest and truthful, but then punish them when they hear truths they don't like. Realize that it was very difficult for the child to tell you a truth that they knew you would not like. Praise them for being honest, and then truly evaluate what has happened. See if the situation is something you and your child can work through together, to help teach your child that honesty is the best policy.
Above all, set a good example yourself. If you are wrong about something, admit it. Be truthful and open in your dealings with your own family, even when it is not easy. Your children will appreciate the guidance.
What do you do if your partner asks how he/she compares to someone from your past, and the comparison is unfavorable?
No person can ever be great at every single thing. It can easily happen that your current lover is fantastic at many things, but is simply not as good as previous lovers in certain areas. You want to phrase this constructively, though.
First off, never lie and claim your lover is much better. It's always better to tell the truth, but in a constructive way. Point out the things your lover *is* better at, and if there's something in particular your lover is not very good at, say playfully that maybe you both should practice at "ZZZZ", whatever it is.
After a few sessions, with you providing guidance and helpful comments, your currently lover might be able to far outshine your partners of the past!
Is a relationship in trouble if partners are keeping secrets from each other? Maybe or maybe not. Secrets in a relationship may be a good thing. There are certain things that really are no one's business, especially in the beginning stages of a relationship. When the couple decides to make a commitment of marriage or even living together, there should be fewer secrets, not more. If you have doubts or concerns about the faithfulness of a partner, keeping information to yourself might keep your partner honest. Some examples of information to keep secret are:
- How many people you have slept with. The number really doesn't matter, remaining faithful in the relationship does matter.
- Income level. It isn't anyone's business how much money you make, especially in the beginning. The commitment rule applies here.
- Experiences at strip clubs, one-night stands, and things you aren't very proud of. You don't have to bear your soul and confess every indiscretion or embarrassing moment to your partner.
- If friends ask that you keep their secrets, don't tell your partner the secret. You are under no obligation to divulge everything to the partner. Be loyal to the friend and keep their secret.
Mature adults in their 40's and 50's have many life experiences and probably have more secrets than someone has in their 20's. Tell your partner the secrets you believe will strengthen the relationship and keep the others to yourself.
Should you perpetuate myths that young children hear about Santa, the tooth fairy, the easter bunny, and other such inventions of the mind?
There is a lot of debate on this subject. Many feel it is a harmless illusion, like wizards or fairires or invisible friends. It is something that many children share, so to leave one child out would make them unusual in their group of friends.
On the other hand, many parents point out that a young child trusts his parents completely for honest information. When a child realizes that his parents have been lying to him for years, this can often be very traumatic. This also tends to happens at a tender stage in their development, when he is now 'choosing' to follow his peers or his parents.
What path should you take? Sit down and think about what truly seems right to you. Do not choose a path just because "it's what everyone else does" - decide what is really best for you, your family, and the way your family works together. If you decide to tell the myths, be sure to watch for signs your child is doubting, and prepare to handle that stage with love and understanding.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|