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He lies,steals and manipulates what could can we do?



New member
Feb 21, 2015
Hi All

I am contacting this forum in regards to my younger male cousin,Kevin. His mother is my older cousin. I suspect he is a narcissist. If anyone can read this long description and provide some insight I would be grateful.

He is a middle child to a single mother and is 13 years of age.

When he was younger he liked to tell what he said were "jokes" or a fib or two but then would quickly tell you he was lying by saying "No, I trick you..." we thought is was strange but we didn't really see it as a big deal because he would tell the truth right after.

Initially at this age his lying wasn't the main problem, it was more his anger and defiance. He would say "no!" when someone would ask him to do something a lot of the time. His older brother would get verbally and physically abused by him. He would say things to get him upset such as "Your hair is ugly" or throwing things at him. Once I stopped him from kicking his brother in the face.

This calmed down but he has continued to constantly decieve and manipulate people as he got older.

His older brother took on more of a parent role to the fault of my older cousin unfortunately. The oldest boy had the bulk of the house work,childcare(the third child,7) and weaving through his younger brothers lies and carelessness about the responsibilities they were suppose to share. He would drag his feet on cleaning,picking up his younger brother from daycare or doing anything until someone else did it.

If he wasn't doing this he was skipping school. Kevin left the house after everyone and got home first so he would put on his uniform as if he was going to school and stay in it all day. Once everyone got home he would talk about his day as if it happened even telling you what he had for lunch until his mother would get a call saying he wasn't there. He did this reguarly in elementary school but as they moved to a better area with a better school system she is notified when he isn't there so he no longer does this.

He also doesn't like to dress for the weather,when it is freezing he will wear a spring jacket with it open or no jacket at all because he wants people to see his clothes,he wants to look cool. On halloween it was 40 degrees and he walked over without a jacket in just a quarter length shirt because if he were to see his friends he didn't want them to see him with a jacket on.

The oldest boy recently had a nervous breakdown because of the stress and confessed he has suicidal thoughts. He told his mother he had too much responsibility with the house,taking care of her youngest child with his own bahavioral issues and how Kevin would never help him and constantly lie or drag his feet on projects which put even more stress on the situation.

While we were all very upset over this Kevin expressed concern but would continue to torment him,telling him to leave the house and why doesn't he just get up and do something, he wished he wasn't his brother. Why is he there? This deeply hurt him. We expressed that he was depressed to cut him some slack and he even knew that he was suicidal but this did not stop his behavior. At the time I did not know the extent of his torment on his older brother. He would call me and tell me how his brother wouldn't talk to him,how no one believes anything he says and how he is ignored and blocked out of family issues/conversations. I would later find out he was the the result of a lot of dysfunction

In the past I asked him why he lies and he told me he lies to get out of stuff he doesn't want to do.

But that doesn't explain his need to say and do things to get reactions out of people. I suspect he likes the drama and dysfunction. He feels comfortable in it.

But I couldn't wrap my head around how he could continue to pick on someone who was literally at the end of his rope.

Once his brother left the home for his father's(it was a last straw because his behavior started to become defiant and even dangerous to his health with drinking and skipping school) things got even more out of control. He even told me how sad he was that his brother left when he was very instumental in his breakdown.

Now all the house work and childcare falls on him. Which means it doesn't get done. He will constantly say he is too ill,too busy with school work or too tired to get his brother from school or clean. But if he does get him and spend time with him, his fuze is very short he will tell him to be quiet if he asks questions and wait for meals when he is hungry.

Of course he is able to complain his way out of most of his responsibilities, which he has always done. He doesn't do nearly as much as the older brother did. But I consider it his karma for trying to push everything off on his older brother.

While we(the family including his mother) can't get him to do anything we ask of him or respond to our calls or texts when we don't see him he will continuously hold the family accountable for things we said we would do for him,such as bring him treats,take him places,buy things for him.


A few months ago his mother gave him her pin code to go to a local mart to get money out for a car service she was receiving. She found that he took 20 extra dollars out but if you were to ask him he would never steal money from his mother and the machine and bank statement is wrong. I was pretty appauld how he would look you in the face and say his integrity level is just too high to steal or lie but he does this all the time.

He would take the money his mom gave him for a haircut and buy his friends candy but tell her he "lost" the cash.

Most recently he started to skip meals. He says he just doesn't eat and will nibble on something at lunch but skip breakfast and dinner. I assume he is depressed and may even feel guilty about treating his brother the way he did because he is seriously withering away. Which is probably making him even more miserable and given he is home a lot by himself just gives him more time to think about how to lie and manipulate people.

He loves attention,good or bad but only shows any real concern when it affects him.

Most recently he said he lost 3 sets of house keys and his mother's car keys which they spent 2 days looking for. She eventually had to spend 300 to get another set made. And this week he "locked" the keys in the house. Which I also suspected was on purpose. The other day he didn't lock the door but this week he locked the keys in the house? This was the only set she currently had because he "lost" the rest. She had to spend more money to get keys made and the door unlocked. She told him if he doesn't find her keys he isn't allowed to have a key or his cellphone for a month. He told her that he shouldn't be punished for a mistake but several minutes later he produced the keys. These keys he said he spent days looking for. Kevin is well aware of their financial struggles but continues to steal,lie and inconvienence.

I suspect he has a personality disorder,possibly narcissisitc and some of the stuff he does even sociopathic sad to say. It's like he doesn't care or has any compassion for the things he says and does to people. He likes to see people run around like chickens with their heads cuts off or in his face asking what he needs or why he acts the way he does. You can never get a straight answer from him on his real motives or reasons.

And now that he doesn't eat and is stealing money, I think he needs to be in the hospital. He has proven himself to be untrustworthy and I don't like the fact that he picks his little brother up from daycare regularly. I truly believe he is slipping and he shocks me every time. He is seeing a school counselor/phyciatrist and if you listen to him he is just misunterstood,mistreated and cant do any better. It's the Kevin show all the time!

Can anyone shed some light on this or what we can do? What does he have? Anything would be appreciated!

Last edited:


Well-known member
Aug 17, 2012
The West Country
This sounds like an incredibly stressful situation for the whole family.

The thing is, as he's only 13, he won't get a diagnosis. But that doesn't mean he can't be treated in some way.
Has there been any improvement since he saw a school counsellor? Does the counsellor give any feedback to his mother?
Does he see any professional outside of school?

Oh and are you in the UK or elsewhere? I only ask because I can only make suggestions of what you could do if you're in the UK..
Like getting his mother to make an appointment with the GP and ask for a referral to CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service).

I'm not a psychiatrist or anything like that, but from what you've said, he seems to have some issues that need to be worked through. It sounds like things can't go on the way they are.

With all due respect and I really don't want to sound like i'm being judgemental of their mother/your cousin, but why was the eldest son left to do most of the housework? Does she have issues of her own or is it work business?
I can't help but feel for him. It's really hard to have a sibling capable of such cruelty and not get much support - I know how that feels.


Well-known member
Jan 5, 2011
Ah, Ignore my PM to you, the boxes to reply have come back on! Just a technical glitch probably.

I think he is just 13. You were possibly spoilt with the older boy, who was so good. This lad sounds like a typical child to me. I've brought up two to adulthood. He needs parameters laying down, firmly, on his behaviour and any discipline has to have a threat of what will happen, eg all computer privileges taken away for a few hours, then escalate to a day and so on. But you, or the adult around, must follow through. Calm voice and very strong action.

BUT its just as important to give time to the boy when he isn't being bad and so he learns that he gets rewarded for good behaviour, no matter how small that behaviour might be. It is so easy, I know as a parent, to only respond to bad behaviour and just ignore good. The child grows up learning that the only attention they get is from bad behaviour and so does that. This child needs warmth and attention, with a healthy dose of very strictly enforced rules with consequences if broken.

To make you smile, my husband would tell my kids, "Right, F you wash up and E you dry up". If they didn't or objected it he said, "OK, so now you have objected or ignored me, you can wash up and vacuum the floor. If you continue, I will continue, and add in cleaning the stairs, ironing...I can keep it up far longer than you..." He would follow through, as children always push the limits, just to check you mean it.

He is a child.
angry butterfly

angry butterfly

Well-known member
Jun 5, 2011
i would agree with your evaluation. the question is though what to do for him and the family.
he is definitely lacking a strong male figure. does he have much contact with his father?
I can understand the older boy leaving. is he doing ok now? do you think your cousin is becoming anorexic?
if he is he would be more likely to get help for that. I think though what he needs more than anything is a strong male influence.