Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Are Your Kids Entitled? - Part Two

You may be thinking, "Okay.  Now that I know a little about how Americans have become so 'entitled,' how is this going to help me raise my kids differently?"  That's a great question!  Acknowledging that a problem exists is only the beginning.  How do you start to make a change?  As the former King of Pop said it, you've got to start "with the man in the mirror!"  

That's right.  The first place you start to help your children learn "good lessons," is to teach them BY EXAMPLE.  Kids will do what you do way before they do what you say!  The funny thing is, most parents don't recognize that their kids are doing what they do because kids are usually less inhibited, more animated, and tend to generalize.  Thus, they do what you do "to the nth power."  Yes, it's true.  You might be startled when they do or say something and ask them, "Where did you get that from?"  However, nine times out of ten, especially during the early childhood years (birth through six years old).

Anyone who has been a parent for any length of time can testify to the fact that usually the most humiliating moments of parenting emanate from the moments when they mimic us in public ... and it seems they usually choose to demonstrate this remarkable talent at church, school events, and in front of judgmental family members and acquaintances - RIGHT?!  Come on, you feel me, don't ya!

So, in order to determine what your child is really learning, you have to start by paying attention!  When they do or say something you feel compelled to correct, ask yourself, "How and when do I do the same thing (or something similar)?"  "When do I feel entitled?"  "How do I respond when my sense of entitlement is strongest?"  "Do I embrace my my sense of entitlement and consumerism to the point where I act as though credit cards a necessity?"  "Do I often say things like 'I got a right ...'?"  You get the idea.  

We can't just look at our kids as though they live in a vacuum.  We affect them.  You want to raise your kids to have less of a sense of entitlement?  Start with yourself! 

There's more to come on entitlement ...

In the meantime, if you have questions or comments, please post them here and I'll make sure the answer you get is just ...

Ruth - Keeping it Real

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