White Spots for Lies

“You know those white spots under your nails? My mom told me that I would get one of those for every lie I told.”

The informant was told this constantly by her mother, and it was obviously a way for her mom to scare her into always being honest. She said she also felt a sense of guilt because she had some white spots under her nails (actually due to a calcium deficiency) so she felt like she may have lied without knowing it. Obviously when she got older she realized this wasn’t true, but she says that everytime she looks down at her nails she’s reminded of it, so in a way her mother is always there to remind her to be honest. This reminder, even when she is old enough to know the original statement isn’t true, shows the insight her mom must have had in telling her this and instilling this semi-fear into her at a young age. Many parents say things like this, like my mom always said my nose would grow if I lied, so it makes sense that every parent comes up with their own version of it to instill honest values in their kids.