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Why is it hypocrisy for a WS to teach children not to cheat?

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UnexpectedSong posted 9/13/2013 17:23 PM

I read often that BSes find it hypocritical that WS parents would teach the children not to cheat/lie/whatever. What is the preferred behavior when a child cheats/lies/whatever? What should a WS tell the child?

SisterMilkshake posted 9/13/2013 17:29 PM

It is hyprocrisy, imo, if the WS is still an actively wayward spouse. Or an XWS still involved with an AP. You would still want the WS to teach the children to not lie/cheat/steal whatever, but c'mon, it is a wee bit hypocritical. Do as I say, don't do as I do.

If it is a former WS than I don't find it hypocritical at all.

Aubrie posted 9/13/2013 17:31 PM

What is the preferred behavior when a child cheats/lies/whatever? What should a WS tell the child?

I guess it would be "hypocritical" because we are in a position where we couldn't "practice what we preached". However, I guarantee you that if our advice to our misbehaving child was, "Meh. Screw consequences. Do what you want." the reaction would be less than stellar.

I think for some WS, we're danged if we do, danged if we don't. Sad really.

aesir posted 9/13/2013 17:36 PM

I read often that BSes find it hypocritical that WS ...

So ignore the plural and focus on the only one whose opinion matters to you.

I personally think that if it is fine for a former addict/alcoholic/gang member/whatever to warn children of the dangers of their own mistakes...

UnexpectedSong posted 9/13/2013 17:39 PM

Okay. Of course it is hypocritical. But, as Aubrie said, what are we supposed to say? "It's okay. As long as you're not caught, you can cheat/lie/steal/whatever." ?

Active WS or former WS... it makes no sense that one would be criticized for still teaching the child the right thing.

I don't find it hypocritcal for anyone who has ever inhaled to tell the child not to. Or not to smoke. Or gamble. Or drink. Or swear. Or whatever.

UnexpectedSong posted 9/13/2013 17:40 PM

So ignore the plural and focus on the only one whose opinion matters to you

You're right.

I shouldn't be posting now. I'm in a pissy mood.

[This message edited by UnexpectedSong at 5:42 PM, September 13th (Friday)]

Simple posted 9/13/2013 18:26 PM

If my children ever lie/cheat/whatever, I think BOTH me and my FWS would sit down with them (could be separate instances) and explain the consequences of that action on BOTH sides. No way would I hide the truth from both sides from my kids, the destruction, etc.

We actually plan to have this conversation with our kids when they are old enough to understand and are starting to have relationships.

Again this is FWS, so I don't believe it's hypocritical at all, I think kids need to at a minimum know what NOT to do! I see it as learning from a person that failed at a challenge so you don't make the same mistake they did.

[This message edited by Simple at 6:29 PM, September 13th (Friday)]

silverhopes posted 9/13/2013 18:40 PM

Hypocritical or not, still necessary to try to tell the child the best values you can. The child will form his or her own values, but you want to give the child the best head start. The child, if s/he knows the history, might (or might not) become upset with the messenger, but it doesn't change that it's a good message.

hobbeskat posted 9/13/2013 19:01 PM

In a way, I think the WS is best placed to impart that wisdom- they're the ones who know the devastation their actions can cause.

uncertainone posted 9/13/2013 19:06 PM

Of course it is hypocritical

Why? Why is it hypocritical. So because I used to use a diaper I can't potty train my children? Seriously?

So a parent that's had an at fault accident or speeding ticket can't teach their kid to drive? A person that's spent too much money and saw how fucked that is can't teach a kid how to budget?

Jesus. We often grow the most from the shit we had to fix from our epic failures.

I'd think it would be actually quite effective. "Hey, I fucked up royally and devasted your mother/father/family. When you make these choices it's catastrophic and never works out. Here's what you need to look at and focus on when you find yourself using these thought processes".

How do you teach someone something by saying "I never did it. It's wrong. Don't do it”? "Well, Mom/Dad what did you when you were faced with this and had those thought processes?""I just said no because I have character and morals". Yeah, thanks. Guess I won't go to them for help when I'm struggling.

Thanks, Simple. That's a great post.

UnexpectedSong posted 9/13/2013 19:55 PM

The child, if s/he knows the history, might (or might not) become upset with the messenger, but it doesn't change that it's a good message.

I love this!

doesitgetbetter posted 9/13/2013 20:11 PM

I think it's absolutely the BEST person to tell a child the value of being honest/faithful/whatever. I will qualify that statement by saying that I think this is only true if the WS is a FWS and has truly recognized the damage their actions have caused.

Why is the WS the best? Because they KNOW the consequences of their actions. They saw how hurt people were because of what they did, they saw how they could have avoided their situation, they saw how easy it was to take the wrong path and likely saw how easy it would have been to just take the right one instead.

Who would be better to teach someone about the perils of smoking... someone who's never laid eyes on a cigarette before, or someone who's smoked, had lung cancer, and is dealing with having to go through life with a tube in their throat? Who will teach others with more impactful information? Who will relate better to those they are teaching? Kinda like getting sex ed from the nuns.... ya, uh huh, like they know anything. LOL (No offense to nuns, they just don't know how it all works in real world experiences)

FR2012 posted 9/13/2013 22:45 PM

Being a FWW, I know the consequences of my actions if it happens again. So who better to teach and instill into a child than the person that screwed up to begin with.

gonnabe2016 posted 9/13/2013 23:12 PM

What is the preferred behavior when a child cheats/lies/whatever? What should a WS tell the child?

That "cheating/lying/whatever is wrong." Period.

What happens AFTER that is where it might messy, though. IMO, a fWS can skate right through this because s/he is practicing what they preach. If a former *whatever* wants to lecture my kid? Good. More power to them because they are the ones that can say "kid, I BTDT. NOT a good option and here's why...."

It gets more dicey though if the WS is still a WS. It is still a proper message to give to the child, but if the child knows/senses/willfindout about the *cheating/lying/whatever* of the person imparting the message, then it's going to potentially end up causing some trouble.....and that's where the *hypocrite* thing could rear its head.

(this has reminded me of *high-lying season* with stbx--Casey Anthony/election year. The lies and mis-information were flying all over the airwaves and I just remember standing in my kitchen listening to stbx ranting about "people not just telling the truth because their lies are sooooo obvious!" Oh.My. Fun times.....)

aesir posted 9/14/2013 01:34 AM

If there is any hypocrisy, I think it is more important that the parent suck up the hit to the image their children have of them than it is to rugsweep potential problems their children are facing to protect their own ego.

If Napoleon were alive today, I am sure he would tell me not to invade Russia, and there would be no hypocrisy at all. Had he sent me a letter from near Moscow saying not to invade Russia and explaining that he had made that same mistake, and was now stuck dealing with the ramifications of that decision and it was a really bad idea and he wishes he never started out on that path and it was difficult to get out of that mess, that would still be a powerful message. It would totally suck if he thought I was going to invade Russia and just sorta went "Cool dude, good luck with that". It is the difference between being a guide or mentor and being an enabler.

I know, Napoleon invading Russia seems kinda random, but I am running out of metaphors for people giving good advice that they themselves failed to follow, and it seems a little offensive to always fall back on addictions or crime or something. Not to imply that WS's are like overly aggressive military dictators.

Trying33 posted 9/14/2013 03:05 AM

Great thread.

We must teach our children the right way of doing things even though we may not have done those things ourselves. Is it hypocritical? Of course it is, but tonnes of things we do as parents are hypocritical.

I drink diet coke and love it. My kids will watch me drink it and ask for some and I will say "No, it's really bad for you" That's sending a confusing message obviously but I don't wants my pre-schoolers drinking aspartame.

FWS or not, we all have an obligation to our young children to teach them right from wrong. We can work on our own wrongs in the meantime. This is just my personal opinion.

Landoes posted 9/14/2013 03:08 AM

No one knows the consequences of lying and cheating more than a WS. I think it's fitting. If you explain how those actions hurt others blah blah..

refuz2bavictim posted 9/14/2013 06:01 AM

When the words match the deeds, I can't see why that would be considered hypocrisy.
Whey they don't....well the results will likely speak for themselves. This goes for anyone wishing to teach or influence the development of children.

What should a WS tell the child?

It's not what the WS "tells" the child that matters, It's what they show/model.

Children know the difference. And they will imitate accordingly.

It has been my observation having worked with children, and watching them grow into adulthood that "Do as I say not as I do" is rarely an effective teaching strategy.

I am pretty sure that most often the kids I have taught, have mainly heard the "Peanuts" version of my voice.

Clarrissa posted 9/14/2013 06:39 AM

I don't think it's hypocritical for a FWS to tell a child not to lie/cheat/steal. I look at it as being like the old Scared Straight program. You know, a bunch of cons telling these wannabe gangsters/criminals *exactly* what they'll be in for if they continue down that path.

And a message *does* have more impact from someone who's BTDT and has firsthand knowledge of the consequences. If the child comes off with "Well YOU did" the FWS can come right back with a first hand account of how screwed up it was and how much pain and devastation it caused, both to the BS and themselves.

As was said before, it's only hypocritical if the WS is still actively a WS.

Sad in AZ posted 9/14/2013 06:45 AM

My personal observation is that BSs get angry when the WS pontificates about cheating. It's one thing to say "If you lie to me, there will be consequences." It's another thing to get up on the proverbial soapbox and launch a diatribe at your kids about the evils of cheating when you're actively schtuping someone who is not your spouse.

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