I'm Dr. Laura Schlessinger welcoming you to our YouTube channel. And our letter from Sheila:
"I want to know how best to handle a situation with my niece. She stole some makeup from me, then denied it. I called her parents and they found my missing makeup. They said she would return the things 'she helped herself to' at a public restaurant with her parents and my in-laws present.
She knows I would do most anything for her but she stole plain and simple from me. She also lied to me and I can't stand a liar. What can I say to make her think before she steals or thinks of stealing anything ever again?
I'm just as mad or madder at my sister-in-law for her reaction. If this had been my daughter, she would have been over at their house returning their things and apologizing immediately. I did not hear from them at all until the email about her 'helping herself' to my things."
Well, you know, I mean she did return them in full view of you, her own family, her grandmother... I don't know what else you would've wanted. I don't understand why you're still mad when they made her take responsibility. Maybe you need to have a private conversation with her saying, "You know what? ..." I mean, I remember having this conversation with my kid when he was very little (because all kids lie) and this is what I did with him - I picked him up at school. I had told him earlier, "We're going to stop by McDonald's [rolls eyes and says "I'm sorry"] and get French fries on the way home from school." [Says in excited voice to mimic Deryk's reaction as a child and does a little dance] "Oh! That's wonderful! I can't wait! We're going to do that! Yeah!" I picked him up from school and drove slowly right past McDonald's. And he said, "You didn't stop!" I said, "I lied." He started to cry (he was just a kiddo) and I said, "That's how I feel when you lie to me."
So you give that person sort of a taste of their own medicine because that's when they understand. I don't know how old your niece is. My kid was really a kiddo when I did this and it made a very big impression. I mean, there were fibs from time to time..."Did you do your homework?" [Looks around, rolling back head and not making eye contact] "Oh, yeah." But that's just kind of normal. Kids are always trying to get out of trouble or out of doing something they don't want to do. But this was outright theft and she brought it to her house. There's something [makes sweeping motion over face with flat hand, palm inward] strange about the fact that she stole something that could easily be identified. That has me concerned.
So I'd like you to sit with her privately and pull the maneuver like I pulled and explain to her that the essence of a relationship between two people is that we really can count on each other, and we know when we can't we are [takes hands from being close together and pulls them apart] separate and we will behave like that forever.
I'm Dr. Laura Schlessinger. Until next time here on our YouTube channel, go do the right thing.