“Do you have a poopy diaper?” I ask as I detect a smell wafting through the room.
There is a quiet pause and then he says, “Yes. Two more minutes?” while holding up two fingers.
I smile and agree.
My little boy did indeed lie, but knew the result of a lie (a time out) so he opted for the truth – with a caveat.
Telling the truth when you have a poopy diaper and you are engaged in some wonderfully fun activity is no fun at all because you have to leave the activity. Lying is a much smarter choice.
So we’ve worked on this one. A deliberate lie gets a two-minute time out which is definitely a break in the play time AND also gets a change of diaper (It’s kinda a no-win situation for the kid).
The truth gets rewarded with a nod of the head affirming his response and then a question asking if he’d like to change the diaper now or in two minutes. He always opts for two minutes and he never protests when the two minutes are up.
Well, he does protest. He just does it by leaving the room during those two minutes and getting engaged in some activity away from us. Our brilliant boy has already realized that we don’t always relish getting up and changing his diaper and sometimes he takes advantage of that by allowing us to forget that we’ve said “Two more minutes”.
He’s a bright one.
And little girl? She’s still in her sweet innocent I-can-understand-you stage where she quickly toddles into the bathroom to get her own diaper as soon as we mention anything.
That will change.