What does it mean to spoil our children?
When we ‘spoil’ our children we often refer to material gifts and over indulging our kids. Gifts however can include material gifts and, can also include sacrificing your own time and freedom to give your kids whatever it is you want to give them. Put simply, it’s overindulging your kids.
It’s sometimes tricky to make the distinction between what is ‘too much’ and doing what’s best. Especially when so many parents and grandparents will have sacrificed so much of their lives, possessions and lifestyle to give their children and grand children a better life than they had themselves. And I must salute any parents that have tried to do this for their children in the best way they know how with the best intentions. As a third generation migrant I’ve seen what my grand parents did for their children, and, what my parents did for us. They’ve always worked hard to give the little they have, in hope of having a better life. But we’ve never ever really known what it feels like to be overindulged.
Why do we spoil children?
For sure there are many parents of children who consciously or even unconsciously spoil their children. Some parents will give excessively with the best of intentions, others will be because they want their kids to have whatever they want or what their friends have, and others will give because they can give it so why not. Our own background and experiences can often have a part to play in how we choose to play this as-well.
What can spoiling our children ultimately do?
In a nutshell, it can harm them socially and developmentally leading to dependence and confidence issues, plus, the obvious one, it can lead to a lack of responsibility.
The truth is, choosing to to spoil your children with material gifts as a parent can often mean that you miss out on giving an even bigger gift.
A gift of independence.
To independently learn to earn what they truly want or need could be the biggest gift you could give them.
Allowing them to earn without being their saving grace will ultimately:
- help them truly understand the relationship between needs, wants and value.
- give them life experiences in what it means to be self reliant and, a responsible human being
- help them further develop compassion and empathy.
- give them the tools to realise goals themselves
And yes yes yes, you can be there to congratulate them for being damn amazing 😉
No one is saying that you can’t help your kids
For sure it is pleasurable to give children gifts, and no one is saying you can’t help your kids, or give them a helping hand.
That is more than okay. Infact it’s a great way to show them the value of what it means to help others. I guess it’s all about getting the balance right. And I know how hard it is. Every child is different, plus if you have more than one child there is always the element of being fair and just. There is no right or wrong way.
Just be conscious and mindful about what you’re doing, how much you’re doing and how you’re doing it all. There’s no reasons why we can’t help our kids AND teach our kids understand the value of what it means to help.
Ultimately, this gift of independence is probably the most beautiful gift you can give.
In time you’ll see what giving this gift really means to them and to you.
If you have abundance in wealth ask yourself do you want you kids to become adults who understand ‘success’ through survival and strength and failure, or, success through entitlement.
I’m Samantha. I’m a London and International Lifestyle, Portrait and Commercial Photographer. I create meaningful portraits that resonate with your soul.
Mindful Mama of 2, leaning into conscious living. Lover of plants and light. I also share mindful notes, stories of wonder and soul lessons I’ve learnt along the way.