Monday, February 26, 2007


Do I look that stupid?

Heh. What is it with teenagers, and tweenagers for that matter? Lying!! Why do they try to get away with the un-get-awayable? Do they think we're stupid or what?

The background: Thursday night when I pick up pizzas, I buy a bottle of lemonade. We have a tradition in our family that the kids get fizzy primarily for 'special' occasions. It doesn't reside in the fridge for daily consumption. Parties, celebrations, (and when they have ridden many kilometres on a bike.) Whenever anyone in the family has 'done good', we celebrate, and they can have fizzy. So, Thursday, Alison's haul at the swimming carnival was certainly meritorious. (And Zoe swam well too) So, yes, I bought a bottle of lemonade.

Arrive home with the pizzas - nothing has been done in preparation. Mum gets the poops, and they don't get lemonade, and it sits unopened in the fridge.

Fast forward to last night. Alison asks if they can have the lemonade. Guess they didn't do much to earn it yesterday, but maybe I did on their behalf - (40 km of mountain bike riding.) Or maybe I was just too stuffed to say no.

"Yeah, ok", I relent. Ali gets it out of the fridge, and hmmm.. interesting... it has been opened and about a glass worth has been consumed.

"Rightio, who opened the lemonade?"

"Not I" said Alison. "Not I" said Zoe. "Not I" said the teenager who had arrived home at least an hour earlier than the rest of us.

"You're kidding aren't you!" I say. "One house, currently 4 occupants, and you expect me to believe that not one of you opened it!!" We all look at the obvious culprit.

"Ah, duh... yeah... well, I only took a little bit."

"Well, none for you for dinner then."

"But it was only a little bit!!!"

"Um, Caitlin. You might just have got away with it, despite it not really being the right thing to do (especially as the celebration was not, that day, on your behalf.).. But you lied about it!! What possessed you to lie?"

"Um, it was just an automatic reaction."


Automatic reaction. Deny, deny, lie... ??

I can't figure it. Does she really think I'm that stupid? Unless.. (recalling my university psychology lectures), there has been a variable schedule of reinforcement occuring. Translation: Is she actually getting away with it more than I realise, so that it has actually become a Pavlovian response to lie as an automatic response.

In which case, maybe I'm not as on the ball as I thought I was.

Guess we are all only human... and we all make errors. And some are far dumber than not picking up your teenager's propensity to lie!

I'll leave you with these for a chuckle:

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Oh Trace - I am not sure there is a "right" answer to you conundrum - I think it is an ingrained teenage response.

I am not sure if it was Bill Cosby or Tim Allen (like they are really similar) who I read with their reflex "it wasn't me" whenever a parent raised an eyebrow - only this is the flipside in a way, because it WAS!!!!

Good luck - and lucky you - I have a daughter that gets a 3pm curfew on fizzy drinks, otherwise the house explodes!!!
Since I tend to go off the deep end (do my 'nana) on a regular basis, I guess my kids are going to resort to teh "wasn't me" refelct too, in years to come. I find it cute that my daughter atually owns up when she has tipped a box of cocoa on the hindsight, of course.
You, as a parent of a teenager, are stupid. By default. Your IQ drops 40 points every time they walk into the room. I have 3 teens. My iq goes into the negatives when they're all around. I'm so stupid I can't even breathe right.

I do the same thing with fizzy-and any that's left over is MINE.
Well Said Rootietoot.

They think mothers are so dumb they won't notice the first several inches missing from a drink bottle or those several cookies removed from the second layer.

They do outgrow it.

Until then they truly do think that the whole world is about them and that they have it all figured and covered.

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