MoM put the hard question to you all about raising spoiled brats and the responses are quite surprising.

We shared on Facebook how we often struggle with this issue, “As a kid, we went out for a family dinner as a treat on our birthdays and got presents once a year on our birthdays.

“But I look around our living room and our place is like a daycare centre – our kids have so much and yet whenever we go to the shops, they still ask and ask for new toys.

“We take our kids out for meals and they’ve been lucky enough to go on overseas holidays (because we enjoy this too!).

“We try and instill good values and manners in our kids but I can’t help but worry that we are raising a generation that wants for nothing and expects the world.

“I’m interested to hear how you can keep kids grounded and appreciative in a world where everything is at our fingertips.”

MoM’s respond

While other parents agreed they too often worry about the same issue a few MoM’s left us some sound advice.

Mandy suggested the answer was really quite simple, “Simple, don’t give them everything. Tell them no even if you can afford it or they will keep asking cause they know you will say yes …. if they crack it ignore it, always told my kids naughty kids don’t get nice things and I’m not always going to say yes … they will appreciate it more as they get older ..”

Darel added, “The other day I went through my children’s room and donated half of their toys.

I told them that they didn’t need it all, and there are children out there that have none that need them more.

Don’t buy everything they ask for. Explain to them that they don’t need it. Other than that, there’s not much you can do.”

Robyn said, “Make them work for it. The bigger the job, the bigger the reward. If they want it that bad, that’s how they pay for it. That’s how the real world is going to be, so it’s not an unfair ask. Otherwise you will be strapped with them forever relying on you.”

Bree added, “Also, make sure others like family and friends don’t just buy them things for no reason. A small reward for being exceptionally well behaved is ok but make sure everyone is on the same page.”

We loved Lorraine’s idea! ” I find my kids are much more considered of itself they buy it’s their money that they are spending. We have a chart where they get a star stamp for doing the right thing e.g., going to sleep without fuss, keeping their room clean, random things we notice and want to praise. When they get to 100 stamps they get $30. They can save it or spend it.”

What should we do?

Parents seem to be fearful of challenging children and saying NO or on the other hand are placing too much pressure on them to succeed and then feel the need to overcompensate by wrapping their children in cotton wool.

US academic Joseph Epstein has coined the term “kindergarchy” referring to a “new world order in which children rule”.

We need to teach kids a sense of responsibility, we need to learn not be a helicopter or “snow plow parent” — who clears the way for their child to make sure they don’t suffer any disappointment or difficulty — and to not “over function” for our kids.

We need to get back to basics and let kids be kids!

Join our Facebook chat and share your thoughts with us on the topic.


  • I agree. Parents need to say no more often. There’s so much disposable income these days and toys/ clothes etc are SO cheap compared to when I was growing up. Doesn’t mean they need it all.

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  • It’s okay to say NO. Our son does not like it, but he’s learned to accept it. He is now 17 and has a great sense of empathy, value, and understanding of money. It’s still a work-in-progress but his I often observe his behaviour and realise that we role modelled well and we have instilled in him a sense of giving, sharing, consideration, etc. Our hard work is paying off.

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  • Some great tips mentioned. But another thing I think is setting kids up for failure later in life is the whole no winners or losers in team sports etc.

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  • More then anything else we should focus on the gift of love and attention.

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  • I worry about this too and I don’t spend ridiculous amounts on them. I rarely by toys but other people do. I make my daughter earn pocket money if she wants to buy extra things. Even with this you take her shopping or if she sees a catalogue she wants everything she sees!

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  • I think it is the values that have changed.

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  • Our kids know not to ask in the shops often, or at least demand like most kids do. If they don’t use their manners and say please they definitely will not be given what they have requested. I never buy lollies when they are with me. I get them at other shopping trips. They are special treat. They know there is a fairly good chance the answer will be no. There are no tantrums. If it a genuine educational object I am more likely to agree…..if I have the money to pay for it.

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  • We have never been afraid to say “no”. It always comes with a discussion and communication is key.

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  • Yep, we give presents on birthdays and Christmas too and even then we’re moderate. I absolutely don’t just buy them something when we’re at the shops.

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  • my kids get spoiled on birthdays and Christmas, we don’t have to money for anything else but I did get them something tonight with my flybuys points. And where it says kids ask for more toys yes they do and they always have, that isn’t a generation thing that is a kid thing

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  • To me it wasn’t about spoiling but rather giving her a childhood I never had that I always envied amongst other kids

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  • It is a matter of parents, and grandparents giving too much too soon and then they get to expect it, give them love and your time instead. Teach them to think everything they get is special and give them less. People must just have too much money to spare, or are buying too much cheap imported junk.

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  • The spoilt brat generation is well and truly here.

    Reply

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