“When a child is allowed to do absolutely as he pleases, it will not be long until nothing pleases him.” -Anonoymous
This quote perfectly describes the “entitled child.” Too often, I’ve had to sit back and literally “bit my lip” while watching friends of mine make a parenting style out of this quote.
Children need boundaries, limits, and expectations. They also need a parent with a backbone. Too often, parents find that it is simply easier to give-in to their children rather than enforcing limits and/or rules. They don’t want to engage in a power struggle, or worse yet, make their child upset. I say, “LET THEM BE UPSET!”
There’s no reason any parent should have to bend over backwards simply to appease their child…this is what creates an entitled child.
An entitled child believes that he deserves to be treated special…that he should get “preferential treatment.” This is a great way to teach narcissism.
How can you tell if your child is entitled?
- He or she is more of a “taker” more than a “giver”
- He or she complains about having to do basic chores
- He or she always wants an option that wasn’t offered
- He or she frequently tries to bargain or make deals
- He or she pouts when things don’t go as desired
- He or she is impatient and/or has a low frustration tolerance
- He or she expects others (usually the parents) to fix their problems
- He or she always expects to have the “latest” fad or fashion
How can you avoid raising an entitled child?
- START YOUNG!
- Discourage the “materialistic” mindset
- Teach and practice patience
- Help your entitled child “give back” to the community
- Get out of the habit of rewarding your child for every positive behavior
- Avoid allowing your child to negotiate options that weren’t offered
- Avoid bailing your child out of trouble every time
- Set firm limits and enforce them