I read and watch all of the chatter surrounding Lance Armstrong and his eventual confession about actually doping while participating in professional cycling, and also his confession about lying for the past several years.
So many thoughts go through my head.
With all of the hype around the topic, it's no surprise that my 10 year old asked me the other day, "Mom, what is 'doping'", followed almost immediately by, "Why did he lie about it?"
Obviously, I had to explain the term to him and then explain reasons why it's been such a topic of discussion recently.
The second question, the one about lying, came just after we watched the CEO of Livestrong talk about the effects of Lance's revelation on the Organization, and it needed more thought on my part in order to provide the most meaningful explanation.
If you've read any of my other entries in this parenting blog, you'll know how I feel about teaching kids personal values. One of the primary ones to teach at a young age is the negatives of lying. It's a hard lesson to learn, and some don't ever learn it. Some, as Lance indicated happened with him, lie to perpetuate their own reality regardless of the effects it has on others.
Kids who are taught personal values, such as telling the truth, at an early age are much more likely to have a strong sense of virtue and want to do what's right with others, and do it for God and themselves... just because it's right.
I can't begin to know Mr. Armstrong's upbringing, his inner drive to perpetuate the narrative that he was the best of the best, at all costs. I feel for what he put others through who competed with and against him the honest way. But this post isn't so much about him, as it is about what we can and should learn from it all.
I'll be purposefully inserting some discussion with my kids about it, and hopefully get their wheels turning about the choices and consequences surrounding this situation. I hope that some good can come from it.
For more on the topic of teaching children virtues, visit teaching your children values.
Also, for more threads on all-things-parenting, visit the positive parenting pipes I've put together of different parenting sites.