Don’t tell your mum….

On the face of it this is a pretty harmless statement.  My husband often says this to our daughter when he’s taken her for a cheeky McDonalds, given her ice-cream before dinner or sloped off for a sneaky pint at the pub.  I’ve also been know to say ‘don’t tell your father’ if I’ve bought her something she really doesn’t need and we really can’t afford.

But, just imagine someone outside of your immediate family saying this; a sports coach, an estranged family member or some other unsavoury person.  It doesn’t have the same innocent ring to it does it?

This is why I’ve asked my husband not to say it and I’m going to try not to use it either.  I do know that some secrets are safe (gifts, surprise parties or harmless whispering in the playground between friends), but some are not.  I don’t want to instil that keeping secrets is okay.

When she is old enough, I hope to teach her the difference between good and bad secrets but at the moment I think she may be too young.

What do you think?

This great bit of advice was original given to me by my good mate, AnnieQPR.

Author: mediocremum

A slightly older mum of one, who drinks far too much red wine and has an unhealthy obsession with her slow cooker. During the day she's an ICT Trainer, Social Media/Online Marketing consultant and does a bit of public speaking. Full Profile on Google+

8 thoughts on “Don’t tell your mum….”

  1. I totally agree. We have surprises – which are like secrets but you know when you will ‘reveal all’. We don’t allow the word secret in this house. The rule is that if someone asks you to keep a secret then the first thing you do is tell mummy or daddy or both!

  2. I think that’s marvellous advice, although I must say that often abuse occurs within families and therefore children learn from an early age to keep secrets from parents. The best way is like you have said to avoid secrets at all costs and to protect our innocent babies. I work with families who have suffered abuse whether it be neglect/emotional or sexual and it is heartbreaking.

  3. It is so difficult to get this right. I’ve said the same in my home, and I don’t think they get the distinction when they’re so young. I like suprpise too. I just reiterated the stranger danger conversation to my kids this morning after I read that horrific story about the 8 yr old in Canada who was invited to go see a puppy….

  4. Right from the word go, my sister never ever used the word secrets with my niece. they don’t have secrets, they have surprises which works much better. Obviously this has changed when my niece started school and befriended a couple of little madams who would always go on about having secrets. But I like my sisters approach because when you think about it, there is something sinister about secrets. Like the ‘not telling your mother/father’ business. I think it’s the safer way to go.

  5. Totally agree – I don’t want my children to think they should keep secrets

    It’s one of the reasons why I don’t like Grandpa in my pocket which seems to me to glorify keeping secrets…

  6. Great advice, and something I hadn’t thought about until now – I often say to Olivia ‘Don’t tell Daddy hahaha’ when we’re eating biscuits / staying up late etc.

    It’s a shame that we have to think about things like this, but it’s very good advice. I shall think more in future.

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