One of the main purposes of this website is to share with parents practical tips to raising well-mannered, self-sufficient, mature children. I, undoubtedly, do not have all the answers, nor even know all the questions, but I share from my experience with my five children, the conversations I have with my readers and friends, and observations I make from our society at large. I want to encourage families to build strong relationships with each other and make the family unit the priority over all the distractions our society says is more important.
I have seen several articles in the press this year about how spoiled the average American child is. My initial response was , “well, duh!” I’ve made remarks on more than one occasion about the idiocy of many child-rearing techniques which tout the importance of a child’s ego and pandering to his/her every whim and fancy. This trend has led to adults who can master the top levels of a video game but not hold more than a minimum-wage job, or actually a string of minimum-wage jobs because they usually job hop every few months.
With that said, I want to make a confession. My children are spoiled. That’s right. I admit it. So, to make my penance complete, here are some of the ways in which I spoil my children:
- They eat three meals a day at home, cooked from scratch. Oh, the therapy they will need one day because they so rarely enjoyed a Happy Meal.
- They live in a family with both (original) parents who are married and love each other. Think how boring holidays will be when they only have one set of parents to visit.
- They read age-appropriate, wholesome books, mostly historical fiction and biographies. How out of place they will be one day when they don’t need therapy for nightmare-inducing vampires or witches, premature romantic relations, or graphically violent murder scenes.
- They do the majority of their education at home taught by me. No bullies. No “health” lessons on immoral lifestyles. No 8-hour days in a classroom, followed by 3 hours of homework. No mindless testing, the only pupose of which is to fund mostly ineffective teaching styles and politically-correct curriculum.
- They are computer-literate. Why, they might actually follow in my footsteps and hold a productive job as a computer network manager, which pays a decent income and actually supports the economy. The horror of apprenticing with a parent.
- They don’t ride a bus to school (see #4), so they don’t witness disrespect of authorities, brawls, or snobbish clics. How will they survive in a world populated by public-schooled kids who think it normal to bully, be rude, and make others feel inferior? Be self-employed?
- They are taught manners, and can hold conversations with adults. This must be considered unfair advantage in the real world.
- If they don’t get their way when involved with an extracurricular activity, I don’t hop up and down and demand justice or threaten civil litigation. What does that teach anyway? That only bullying gets what you want?
- I smother them with hugs and kisses countless times a day. No surrogate daycare here.
- We prefer educational vacations, such as trips to the Texas State Capitol, the King Tut exhibit, or zoos. My children know history up close and personal.
This is not an exhaustive list. I spoil my children in countless ways. I love them, like any parent, and I make my parenting choices based on what is best for their future. I keep the end-goal in mind, which is to make them self-sufficient and confident in their own abilities. This is my version of spoiling them because they will actually stand a chance at having a happy life, one in which they will not spin their wheels looking for the easy way.
How do you spoil your children?