Tag: Teenagers

Your Spoiled Brats Are Your Fault

No one likes a spoiled brat. As an adult you learn right away that other people are not tolerant of spoiled behavior. You can quickly lose friends or even the respect of other people. You learn that life does not revolve around you and no one will stick around very long if you continue to think that it does.

But when a child is spoiled that’s a little different since the parents are responsible for their children’s bad behavior. We’ve all seen toddlers who throw temper tantrums in the grocery store, infants who throw food in a restaurant or the adolescent that talks back when he/she doesn’t get their way. Whether your child is a baby or a teen, there is nothing cute about a child who is disrespectful. Puberty is just no excuse!

Why do parents tolerate this behavior? It’s one thing if you allow your child to act spoiled in the privacy of your own home (notice I said “act” spoiled not “be” spoiled – there is a difference) but to have other people witness spoiled behavior should be more embarrassing for the parent than it is for the child. Why let other adults see how ungrateful your child is? Why set a poor example for other children that may not be as privileged as your own? Now parents who have witnessed your child’s bad behavior have to explain to their children why it’s not okay to be unappreciative of what they receive. Remember parents, you can’t get exasperated with or be mad at your child since you are the one who spoiled them in the first place.

I know I was spoiled as a child but my parents made sure I never acted like I was spoiled brat. Giving a child things that they want (not need) spoils them but when a child expresses gratitude, that is the opposite of spoiled.

I Learned How To Drink & Drive

A couple of weekends ago, a friend was telling me how she was driving under the influence on New Year’s Eve. Of course, she knows better than to drink & drive but I suppose she thought she hadn’t had too much to drink and was perfectly capable of driving. I asked her why she didn’t give her keys to someone else and her response was “No worries, I was taught how to drive while drunk”. When I heard that, I almost dropped the phone!

At the time her comment seemed ludicrous but the more I thought about it, the more I thought about how parents are teaching their children things with the disclaimer of “Don’t do this but in case you do, here’s how.” In my friend’s instance, I’m sure she was taught not to drink & drive but in the event she found herself in a predicament where she did have a few drinks, then she should drive slowly and carefully.

Another illustration of this is when parents tell their teenage children not to have sex, but still arm them with birth control just in case. How can you teach someone NOT to do something but still give them the tools to get it done? I know, I know – kids are having sex anyway so it’s up to the parents to teach them about using protection. The flaw with this argument is that parents are essentially saying that it’s okay to have sex as long as you protect yourself – and that’s dead wrong.

I think that you should reinforce what you teach to your children and if they rebel, let them realize the consequences of their actions for themselves. It’s called “Tough Love” folks…

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