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American culture of overindulgence raising spoiled, needy children

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
5/27/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Children given too many children invariably fail later on

Those who have everything - have noting. It's a truism very much applicable in contemporary child rearing. While parents strive to have their children be kid to others, the American culture of overindulgence is leading to generations of spoiled, "me-first" children, who in spite of having lots of material goods and advantages - suffer from lack.

'When children are given too many choices,' Dr. McCombs continues, 'they are being set up for difficulty later on. When they go to school, they learn very quickly that they are not the boss, and many kids don't know how to handle that.'

"When children are given too many choices," Dr. McCombs continues, "they are being set up for difficulty later on. When they go to school, they learn very quickly that they are not the boss, and many kids don't know how to handle that."

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
5/27/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in Marriage & Family

Keywords: Family, children, overindulgence, sharing


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Dr. Margi McCombs, a family and child educator for more than 30 years, note that the American media inundates parents with messages about buying things that will make their children smart, bright, cool or successful.

This strategy doesn't help parents raise kids who are kind and loving to others.

Share the Good Word with your child -- by going here --

The good news is that kids can be made more loving and giving - even against these odds. Dr. McCombs offers five ways to help you create a loving home environment where your children will flourish.

First, parents should be parents. Parents often let children make all decisions for themselves, starting at two years of age. This places them in the "awesome role of boss," Dr. McCombs says. "It makes them happy, and it's a way for parents to avoid conflict, but it's a short-sighted gain.

"When children are given too many choices," Dr. McCombs continues, "they are being set up for difficulty later on. When they go to school, they learn very quickly that they are not the boss, and many kids don't know how to handle that."

Mom and dad should always be the boss. "Children feel much more secure when mom and dad are in charge," Dr. McCombs adds. "This creates an important layer of emotional stability in their lives and in the home." And it's a much better platform from which to teach awareness of others.

Most importantly, model the behavior you want your children to emulate. "If you're trying to teach your children to be unselfish, be sure to examine your own behavior so that you're not taking the biggest piece of steak on the plate," Dr. McCombs says. "As parents, know the landscape of your own heart. We can read our children all the Bible stories we want, but if we're acting selfishly ourselves, our kids will reflect our behavior."

You should also create your family's mission statement, which establishes your family's identity and figuring out your values. Then convey those values to your kids so they understand who you are as a family and what you stand for. It helps them know who they are becoming.

Even in the media frenzy of having it all, make your kids understand they can't have everything. Even if you have the resources, don't give your kids everything they want, Dr. McCombs urges. This creates false expectations about the world, which will not give them all they desire. Talk to your children, instead, about the things they dream about and what you can and will do for them.

And, above all, value conversation. Make sure everyone puts their cell phones and Ipads away - and this includes mom and dad. Talk to each other at dinner time, Dr. McCombs advises. "You'll be amazed at how liberating it can be for the whole family to be together without being distracted by a text message."

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