While there’s no doubt that I make parenting mistakes daily (hey, I’m not perfect), if there’s one thing I want to do right, it’s to make sure that I raise children who show respect, are responsible, and know how to say their please and thank you’s. I owe to society as a parent to teach my children the difference between right and wrong.
Of course, teaching children gratitude, responsibility, and knowing the difference between being honest and telling a lie isn’t easy. Just like adults, kids are tempted to touch all the bad stuff before the good. That’s why I try to enforce the right kind of values and morals before it’s too late. We all know that by the time they hit their teen years, it’s hard to reverse any damage (or lack of parenting) that has been done.
With that being said, you don’t want to raise a spoiled brat. Trust me! Yet, as parents it’s hard to avoid at the same time.
Here are just a few signs that you might be raising a spoiled child at home.
1. Never Saying No
Would YOU let your children swear at you or raise complete hell at home? Trust me when I say that you don’t want to be the parent that never says no. No means no, period. Humans have successfully parented using the word “No”, giving structure and boundaries to their kids for thousands of years. Personally I think you need both ‘yes’ and ‘no’ parenting.
Children need to know when to behave, have manners and have boundaries to keep them safe. On the other hand, they need freedom to use their imagination, learn what interests them and generally be a kid. With that being said, if you are continually a “yes” mom, there’s a good chance that your kids will have no respect for you or treat you like a door mat later in life.
2. Raising Entitled Brats
They always want whatever everyone else has. Once they have it, they want something new. Entitled kids feel they believe or deserve to be given something shiny or new or heck, even special privileges. A sense of entitlement complex is linked with narcissism and borderline personality disorder.
We all want things. But some people feel they are entitled to whatever it is they want, and they feel they deserve it all now. That can make for very difficult relationships, a lot of disappointment, and never receiving what is most important in life.
3. Not Teaching Gratitude
Teaching gratitude to your children will help them be happier and better prepared for adult life. Unfortunately, a lot of kids are more entitled than grateful these days. Lack of gratitude in children is chafing the patience of many parents, and it shows up in our culture of entitlement.
That’s why, no matter how difficult, long or tedious it may be, I always make kids write thank you cards to their peers or call a family members whenever they receive a gift on their birthday or a holiday. One thank you goes a long way and I would be doing myself a huge disservice by not teaching my kids gratitude. Plus, there’s a huge difference between wanting something, needing something, and expecting something.