Chris, a father of three and Daddy’s Down author is – dare I say – a real father. He’s tough as nails and he’s not sugar-coating anything for his kids. He recently had to have his dog of 12 years put down – which was hard enough for him. But then, he decided to tell his kids the truth. No “Spot went on vacation” or “Rover went to doggie-heaven.”

So, over dinner, Chris told his kids this: “Sometimes mommy and daddy have to make tough decisions. Last night, the ghost of Abe Lincoln came into our bedroom last night and told us that we had to make a decision. He said that in the name of freedom, we’d have to choose whether to kill one of you kids, or kill the dog. So, the good news is that we chose you over the dog. The bad news is that the lasagna we’re eating are made with dog meat. Because Lincoln said we’d have to dispose of the body ourselves, and it just seemed like a terrible waste to get rid of all this sweet, sweet dog meat.”

Okay, that’s not at all what Chris said.

But back in reality, Chris had to make the tough decision to be honest with his kids about their dog’s death. Kids “learn to deal with sorrow and grief” he says, “by having to deal with it.” As a nice side effect, Chris says that this angle also teaches your kids honesty, integrity and trust. All true. A lot more true than going the Lincoln-death-ultimatum route, I guess.

Sauce: Daddy’s Down