I know a mother whose husband was killed while her son was very young. In an attempt to compensate for the loss, she would give him more than he ever needed. She was ridden with guilt about not having a father figure for him so she thought giving him more “stuff” would change something about their situation.
Can’t you feel where this is going? The mother’s guilt was spoiling her son. The over indulgence of your child may not be a result of a tragic loss but there may be some issues in YOUR past that are effecting your child’s future. No matter what happens, good or bad, you cannot use it as an excuse to spoil your children. As parents, we want our children to have the best that life has to offer. We want them to have a better life than we had but… more stuff is not the answer.
Last week, we discussed how our parenting effects their work ethic but these little indulgences also effect their relationships with other people. This young man is reaching the dating age and he has a hard time finding girls that he wants to date. Why? Because children date their parents and his mother’s overindulgence set the standard for how he expects women to treat him. I do believe that with time he will develop a more realistic idea of how relationships operate but he is going to go through some growing pains to get to that point.
Regardless of what happened in your childhood or how much you treasure the little person or people in your life, don’t let emotions override your ability to be a good parent. Providing for your child and spoiling them are too very different things. Help your child to grow up with realistic expectations for the future and to become a person that others want to be around because of their character and not because of their “stuff”.