Dear Parent. My name is Sam Miller and for the last 20 years I have been helping parents regain control of the situation with their child as well as helping their teenagers deal with depression, addictions, anger, rebellion, anxiety, stress, lack of motivation, and more. Each reason will require a different approach when it comes time to speak with them about this.
Lying and stealing are common, but inappropriate, behaviors in school-aged children. While some severe forms of these behaviors can indicate a more serious psychological problem, most of the time it is simply a common behavior that will be outgrown. Lying and stealing are more common in boys than girls, and happen most often in children ages 5 to 8 years.
At Family Lives we hear from parents who are concerned about their teenagers lying to and stealing from them, other family members and friends. To fit in Peer pressure is behind a lot of the behaviour seen in teenagers, and wanting the latest mobile, computer game or new clothes, can drive them to use any means to get what they want. For attention Sometimes even negative attention can seem better than none at all.
Depending on the value of what was stolen there are legal penalties that may be associated with the act of stealing. However, regardless of the value, stealing engenders feelings of shame, embarrassment and guilt for both the teenager and the parents when it comes to light. There are steps you can take to stop your teenager from stealing again so they can avoid landing in serious trouble.
This is probably hard to admit, but yesterday you caught your teenager red-handed taking money out of your purse. To add insult to injury, you are pretty sure this was not the first time they helped themselves to some of your hard-earned cash. To nip this problem in the bud, and prevent it from blossoming into a full-blown issue that involves late-night calls from the police, check out these surefire tips:.
While finding out that your child has taken something which does not belong to her is stressful regardless of your child's age, it's often particularly upsetting when dealing with an adolescent. Before reacting, however, it's essential to consider the reasons why your teen might feel compelled to take something which isn't hers; while it's true that stealing is indeed reprehensible and should be taken seriously, young people face manifold pressures to engage in theft — whether they truly want to or not. Teenagers also do simply feel a very real need to rebel —their brains are strongly prompting them to assert their independence, which involves rejecting adult authority —leading them to sometimes make poor decisions while pushing boundaries.
However, shoplifting candy bars from a store and stealing with aggression are two very different acts. There is a fierce sense of competitiveness amongst teens and pre-teens these days regarding having the cool stuff, wearing the hip clothes, and sporting hot make-up or accessories. Many kids will resort to stealing as a response to this phenomenon.
When you discover something is missing, if you can, collect your evidence. Get your investigators hat on — find out which child is spending more than usual. It is best if a conversation about stealing is done when there is no doubt. When confronted with the evidence, if your child insists they got the money elsewhere tell them you will make inquiries in a couple of hours to check their story, to give them a chance to think about it and come clean.