50 Lies Kids Say That Parents Always Fall For

"If we get a dog, I promise I'll take care of it!"

teens words and phrases phat

Let's start with the good news. If your child is lying, this means he or she is smarter than other kids. According to developmental psychologists, kids who deceive have higher verbal I.Q.s and better "executive functioning skills." Fantastic, right? Well, here's the not-so-good part. They're probably so good at lying that they're fooling even you. A 2017 study, published in the journal Law and Human Behavior, found that adults are able to identify when a kid is lying to them just 47 percent of the time. That means you're falling for their tall tales more than half of the time!

Let's see if we can change that. Here are 50 of the most common lies by kids—meaning, anyone between the ages of one and eighteen, not yet legally an adult—that parents can't help falling for. You might laugh at some of these, but there are bound to be one or two that make you think, "Uh-oh…. I think they got me."

"If we get a dog, I promise I'll take it for walks and feed it."

Group of dogs Lies Kids Say

Always effective, and man do we always hope it's true. But we always know how this turns out: Mom and Dad are the primary caretakers of this poor animal.

"The school didn't send out report cards yet."

Failed term paper Lies Kids Say

As every parent knows, report cards always seem to find a way to show up late. If only those schools could get their act together!

"If you let me (blank), I'll never ask you for anything else ever again!"

kid eating Lies Kids Say

If I can get that in writing, and have it notarized by a lawyer, I'll totally believe you. And to spot even more everyday fibs, here are 40 Lies Everyone Tells on a Daily Basis.

"I need the money for books."

books Lies Kids Say

Yes, by "books" you actually mean "candy."

"He started it!"

Lies Kids Say

Nobody says this unless they've been caught red-handed and just don't want to be take the rap alone. Odds are, whoever you're ratting out didn't start it, they're just a co-conspirator.

"I think I'm too sick to go to school today."

Kid, school, relationship, fall Lies Kids Say

No actual sick person says this. If you're feverish or nauseous, you don't have time for indecisive pondering. You just want to be left alone to moan in the dark.

"Dad said I could."

be a much better father Lies Kids Say

Was dad looking at his phone when he said that? Yeah, spoiler alert: Dad didn't hear a word you said.

"I'm fine."

upset teens Lies Kids Say

It's not the denial, it's how the denial is said with folded arms, with a big frown, a furrowed brow, and an expression that practically screams "I am soooooooo mad right now."

"My phone died."

smartphone Lies Kids Say

One thing we know for sure: Your most beloved gadget on earth is never, ever, dead.

"The party is chaperoned."

party cups Lies Kids Say

You realize that a "chaperone" means a grownup, and not just a friend, right?

"I was late getting home because of traffic."

traffic Lies Kids Say

Nothing worse than getting stuck in midnight rush-hour gridlock.

"Of course I ate the lunch you packed."

lunch Lies Kids Say

Sorry, but they definitely ditched the celery for some chips out of the vending machine.

"I didn't block you on Facebook. That must be a mistake."

Facebook friend request Lies Kids Say

Congratulations on being the first person under 18 to be confounded on how social media privacy settings work.

"I'll be super careful with the car!"

kid instsgramming the car Lies Kids Say

Just hearing this one gives us chills.

"I have no idea how the car got damaged. Maybe somebody hit it when I was parked."

cars Lies Kids Say

Oh sure, it's entirely plausible that you wouldn't have noticed the back bumper was dragging against the pavement, making a loud screeching noise, until the next day.

"I'm just going to play this video game for two more minutes."

bad puns Lies Kids Say

We believe it was Albert Einstein who once said, "the dividing line between past, present, and future is an illusion." Or in other words, you have no intention of turning off that video game in two minutes, because time is meaningless, and also we are not suckers. And speaking of video games, consider giving your kids one of these 8 Cutting-Edge Video Games That Will Make You Smarter.

"I've never tasted beer."

beer tasting Lies Kids Say

No, we're not laughing at you, we're laughing at past selves who thought this was a believable lie when we were teenagers.

"I would never pour bacon grease down the kitchen drain."

Bacon Level Alabama Lies Kids Say

Says the young person who literally just poured bacon grease down the kitchen drain. And for more on decoding your kids' language, check out the 40 Slang Terms No One Over 40 Should Ever Use.

"I forgot."

words and phrases Lies Kids Say

No you didn't. When you're older and you're juggling too many responsibilities and your brain is fried from stress, you can say "I forgot." You're a kid. The best you can claim is "Whatever you told me wasn't as interesting as video games."

"The teacher didn't give us homework tonight."

teacher Lies Kids Say

Unless your teacher is going on strike tomorrow, sorry, we're having a hard time believing it.

"He's not a boyfriend, he's just a friend."

teenage boyfriend and girlfriend lies kids tell their parents

Uh-huh. You're not fooling us, darling.

"When you close the door, I'm going straight to sleep."

girl reading in dark Lies Kids Say

Works for us. No way you're hiding a Gameboy under your blanket. But be forewarned, we'll be on the other side of the door, ready to burst in at any moment and scream "J'accuse!"

"I'll do it tomorrow."

Teens on Phones Lies Kids Say

Sure you are.

"I didn't start the fight, I was breaking it up."

snowball fight Lies Kids Say

Of course you were. As Gandhi once said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world… with lots of shoving."

"Of course I'm saving my allowance."

saving money Lies Kids Say

You know, buying all the candy is not considered an investment strategy.

"I'm at the library doing homework."

teens at a EDM festival Lies Kids Say

Oh really? The library is playing more EDM in the background than we remember.

"Of course I'll wear that sweater you bought for me."

sweaters Lies Kids Say

We all know that, best case scenario, that sweater is going stay in your closet until it decomposes.

"I didn't lock the door. Maybe you didn't pull hard enough."

door with keys Lies Kids Say

Yes, we swear we didn't hear it slam, too.

"It's a clip-on nose ring."

nose ring Lies Kids Say

So you won't mind if I give it a tug?

"I took the chicken out of the freezer when you told me."

fridge Lies Kids Say

How strange it's so pink on the inside. Hmm.

"I always drive the speed limit."

speeding ticket Lies Kids Say

Strange that our neighbors down the street called us to say that someone resembling you, driving a car resembling mine, was drag-racing down the street.

"I love our family vacations."

traveling with family Lies Kids Say

We know you're just waiting for a cake with a file in it so you can break out of here.

"I didn't order that. The cable company must've made a mistake."

TV Lies Kids Say

Funny how the cable company keeps making that same mistake to homes inhabited by teenage boys. Such an inexplicable coincidence!

"I was up late studying."

Kids Studying on Bench Lies Kids Say

And… by "studying" you mean "texting."

"I need an extra $20 for gas."

Money Lies Kids Say

Funny how that gas tank always seems to be running on empty these days.

"I got you a gift, it just hasn't shown up yet."

girl gifting her dad Lies Kids Say

Maybe that's what you needed the $20 for!

"I never got your text."

someone on phone Lies Kids Say

So weird!

"I just cleaned my room. Somebody else must've come in and messed it up."

messy bedroom Lies Kids Say

I've heard that our town was being terrorized by a bandit who breaks into homes just to cover bedrooms with toys and unmake beds. I can't believe it happened to us! Hold on, I'll call 9-1-1.

"I already brushed my teeth."

teen brushes teeth Lies Kids Say

Get back in there, young lady.

"I'm listening."

teen not listening to parent Lies Kids Say

I'm sure you are. And whatever I'm saying sounds to you like the mangled trumpet of a Charlie Brown parent.

"I'm pretty sure the movie's PG-13."

Children watching scary movie lies kids tell their parents

Zombie Death Carnival—remind me: is that a Disney release?

"But I did study my hardest!"

kids studying lies kids tell their parents

Naturally, "studying your hardest" in this context means borrowing a better-prepared friend's flash cards and cracking open the textbook an hour before the exam.

"I definitely didn't eat that."

girl eating lies kids tell their parents

Ah, so mice made that fork-shaped hole in your sister's birthday cake?

"My friend's parents always let them."

wine health lies kids tell their parents

Of course your friend's parents let them drink wine with dinner. How European of them.

"I don't have to use the bathroom."

man holding lap lies kids tell their parents

Until we've been on the road for 15 minutes and there are no rest stops in sight, right?

"That isn't mine."

Girl holding generic backpack wearing black shorts and tube sock with tennis shoes standing on vacant street lies kids tell their parents

It's so weird how your friends' vape pens keep getting into your backpack!

"I'll be home before curfew."

watch lies kids tell their parents

Clearly, it was my mistake for not asking whose curfew you'd be home by.

"I'm not embarrassed by you guys."

teen embarrassed by mom lies kids tell their parents

Sure, you're not embarrassed by us—it's just our clothes, friends, family photos, house, and the fact that we still say "I love you" when we drop you off at school.

"I'm not tired."

tired kid lies kids tell their parents

Well-rested kids are notorious for practically nodding off in their cereal.

"I never cut class."

teenage boys playing video games lies kids tell their parents

Yyou must have had a lot of back-to-back free periods to spend the whole day playing Fortnite!

"I don't care."

teen and parent lies kids tell their parents

Ah, that practiced apathy. Just a warning, though: If you really don't care, we're going to make those decisions about where to eat for dinner, what clothes you're getting for school, and where you apply to college. What's that sound? A change of tune, perhaps? And if you want to be a better parent, nix these 40 Things You Should Never Say to Your Kid.

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