Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Spoiled Children

My dad recently sent his kids (the parents of his grandchildren) a copy of an article from WebMD and Oprah.com.

The original article is Are Your Children Spoiled?. It has some great information and ideas! Among them is the concept that children are not born brats -- we as parents create brats. (See the link above for the quote from Rabbi Shmuley at the beginning of the article.)

10 Signs Your Children Are Brats:
  1. They resort to crying or yelling when they want something.
  2. They throw themselves on floor and won't get up.
  3. They constantly throw tantrums or even hit you when you punish them.
  4. They ignore you when you ask a question.
  5. They are rude to other adults and even to other children.
  6. They refuse to share toys or treats with other children.
  7. They are show-offs and are constantly trying to one-up their peers to be the center of attention.
  8. They always want whatever everyone else has. Once they have it, they want something new.
  9. They keep a messy room and never help out around the house despite your pleas for them to do so.
  10. They refuse to go to bed.
And to compliment that list,
What To Do if Your Children Are Brats:

  • Reward good behavior and punish bad behavior.
  • If your children yell when they want something, don't give it to them and take away something they like.
  • If they won't get off the floor during a tantrum, pick them up and put them in their room until they calm down and apologize.
  • If they ignore you when you tell them to do something, punish them immediately. Put them in a corner and don't let them out until they apologize.
  • If they won't share, take away the toy or treat.
  • Don't buy them whatever they want. Make them earn things.
  • If they keep a messy room, don't let them out until it's clean.
  • Enforce bedtimes. Continually put them back into their beds. After a while, they'll stop getting out. You must show there is no other option.
  • Compliment your children profusely and give them rewards when they do the right thing.
Wow! (And just so you know, my Dad didn't think my kids were brats, he was actually trying to compliment his children on their parenting skills because he does NOT have brats for grandchildren. And, he added "Allow the Grandparents to do whatever they want until it's time to go home. Then proceed with damage-control!" to the end of the list... :P)

I found another article on Oprah.com which outlines WHY children are spoiled in today's society and how to stop spoiling your children. (You'll have to read the whole article on Oprah.com for the details.)

Why Children Are Spoiled:
  • Wealth
  • Overindulgence
  • Workaholic Society
  • Bad Marriages
  • Exhaustion
  • Friendship over Parenting
How to Stop Spoiling Your Children:
  • Be the Parent
  • Enforce Bedtime
  • Start a Chores List
  • Give an Allowance
  • Have Family Meetings
  • Talk to Your Kids
  • Have Family Dinner
  • Reduce the Hired Help
  • Go to Church or Synagogue
And, not to toot my own horn, but I have some great ideas as far as chores and allowance go. See the link on my sidebar to Chore Charts & Kid Bucks. :)

So, take it or leave it, but I agree fully with these two articles. I don't think any parent spoils a child on purpose. This article has some great ideas if, like me, you find that your child displays one or two of the "undesirable" traits that you want to change. I wish all parents desired to raise un-spoiled, non-brat children. This world and our society would be a much better place. :)


  1. Darn my kids are spoiled rotten. Time to go yell (I mean postivily reinforce the couple of things they do do right.
    Love your blog.

  2. Can't we just beat our spoiled bratty children :)

    Ha ha ha

  3. Great post...my teenagers are brats lol..they dont' help around the house and never go to bed early lol...but I love them.
    It was a great read tho!

  4. I think that the only thing the list was missing was the part about "be consistent". One of the points said to never give up so I guess that kind of was pointed out but thats the real kicker. I hear parents say all the time "I tried that and it didn't work" but are we talking you tried it for two days? For two weeks? Sometimes it takes a month or two (or a year or two) but I truly believe that good kids come from parents who NEVER GIVE UP. Some times brats happen because kids are just truly willful spirits tho so to the parents who feel defeated by this..remember that you are doing the best you can and sometimes that is all you can do! :)
    great post!!

  5. WOW!!! I learn something! It just perfect time for me looking around to find right charts for my kids . I learned some from supernanny and it helped me some. but it some hard for us because my kids are deaf and me . It hard to explain to my kids what wrong and right and another. whew!!! :)

    thank you for great post!!

  6. wrong screen name it my fiance! I forget to change username! haha!