Tattletales: Why & How I'm Curbing My Kids' Tattletale Mentality by Tanya Kuzmanovic

Tattletales: Why & How I'm Curbing My Kids' Tattletale Mentality

Tattletaling is a perfectly normal behavior, especially in children just starting to develop a moral compass. But if left unchecked, this whistle-blowing mindset can escalate to the point where kids become unlikeable – to their peers, siblings, teachers … even to their own parents!

How an adult on the tattle's receiving end responds is often key to whether the behavior worsens or fades. It's a tricky business helping kids navigate through what is and is not squeal-worthy. The reasons behind it are just as important – if not more so –than the act being blabbed about in the first place. Here's how I break it down to my kids:

  • Is someone hurt?
  • Are you worried about something or someone?
  • Are you trying to win over a teacher or parent?
  • Do you want to get someone in trouble?

As with most human behavior, there are subtle layers and nuances that require deciphering – and I'm here to help guide them through it all. Basically, I tell my kids, "Don't be a tattletale, unless you have to be."

They're finally starting to get the hang of it.

The Secret Life of Your Teenager Is Real: Why I Don't Think You Should Bury Your Head!

In Real Life: What I Saw Through My Camera's Viewfinder Stopped Me Cold

Parenting Different Personalities in Kids: 3 Ways to Encourage Your Kids' Uniqueness & Interests!

Elisa All Schmitz 30Seconds
Great point, Tanya Kuzmanovic . Kids need to be aware of the subtleties. Thanks for sharing your perspective - I always find your approach really interesting!
Mike Prochaska
Omg this my Daugher!! It drives me crazy way she does this !’

join discussion

Please login to comment.

recommended tips

Relationship Issues: My Husband Won't Date Me or Do Any Romantic Gestures (What Do You Think?)

How Can We Expect Our World to Have Balance When Most People Aren't Living Balanced Lives?

Got 30 seconds? Sign up for 30Seconds.com and get the best of our tips each week!