Monday, December 01, 2008

Spoiling Your Kids?

Can parents give too much to their kids? Of course! It's called "spoiling your children."

Many kids don't hear the word "no." Parents today tend to be weak and soft with their kids. They give in to their kid's demands because it's easier to buy whatever it is they want than to spend the time explaining why they won't buy it or deal with the sulking when the child doesn't get what they want.

In addition, many children don't know what it is to work for something. They are not given chores to do around the house. Rather than a strong work ethic, they grow up with an ethic of "give me."

The major problem is that as soon as the children grow up, their requests get bigger and more expensive. They expect to get everything they want. In the continued process of spoiling their adult children, parents will reach for their checkbook whenever their grown children ask for money to pay their credit card bills, parking tickets, medical expenses, real estate fees, car payments and insurance premiums.

Today parents buy their kids condos, clothes, new cars and vacations and don't expect a dime in return. Hardly anything they own is earned; it was all given to them by their hardworking parents. Something needs to be fixed.

The best gift you can give your child right now is to tell them they cannot have everything they want. They need to know that life is filled with disappointments and the world will not fulfill their every request and demand.

In life you will be disappointed. They will have to learn to live with it.

Yes, the economic scene has changed since our parents launched their lives. Young people today will spend a higher percentage of their income on rent than their parents did. Transportation and medical premiums are more costly. Add these financial obligations to an already existing college loan and credit-card debt; today's young people are finding it hard to make it.

Over-indulgent parents surely don't want their kids to feel what it's like not to be able to pay a bill. So they step in as rescuers. As a result young couples are ill-equipped when it comes to delayed gratification and self-help. They feel weak in the face of the responsibilities of life.

For adult children who are pulling their weight and working hard, you don't mind lending them money to buy a car or pay the security deposit on an apartment or helping them alleviate the burden of college-debt payments.

However, a limit should be set or a repayment schedule arranged. Even if an adult child is living at home, they should pay some rent if only to grasp they will have housing costs later.

According to parenting experts, the real problem with adult children is chronic rescuing. Some kids are bailed out on a majority of their dilemmas and never learn how to cope or make wise choices.

Parents are there to guide and teach, not to pamper and rescue. The best way to help children is NOT to help them. This may sound hard to some, but it is the only way they'll be able to build character and cope with the realities of life.

[By John Tesh]

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