a betrayer and a fink?

I often hear parents warning thier kids not to be a tattletale and began mulling over the reasoning behind this seeminly unsavory quality. Webster's defines a tattletale as an "informer".....I'm okay with that. In an age where bullying is all too common, do I really want to silence my sons' voices? Or do I want them to feel comfortable telling an adult about physical or emotional harm that is being inflicted on them? I am hesitant to send a conflicting message about when to tell me about problems and when not too-especially for very young children who don't understand some of these complexities.

The rubber really meets the road when we take a look at the MOTIVE behind tattletaling. Synonyms for a tattletale include, betrayer, canary, deep throat, and fink. In no way, does that describe the spirit of tattletaling in our home. When it does, then we will have another conversation about the condition of our hearts, but for now, I'm encouraging my kids to speak up and learn that they can come to me anytime, anywhere, about anything. Heaven forbid I miss an opportunity to help them sort our thier problems, arguments, or concerns in a productive and Godly fashion-after all, that's my job!

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Amber Lia

A former high school English teacher, Amber is a work-at-home mom of 4 little boys under the age of 10. She is the best-selling author of Triggers: Exchanging Parents’ Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses and Parenting Scripts: When What You’re Saying Isn’t Working, say Something New. She and her husband Guy own Storehouse Media Group, a faith-friendly and family-friendly TV and Film production company in Los Angeles, CA. When she’s not building sand castles with her boys on the beach, or searching for Nerf darts all over her house, you can find Amber writing to encourage families on her blog at Mother of Knights (www.motherofknights.com).