It may be easier to raise entitled kids than you think. These common parenting mistakes are what causes moms to raise entitled kids in today’s world:
Did you know there were parenting things you’re probably doing that could be causing entitlement?
Entitlement: When kids expect to always get what they want, irregardless of what they put in.
Let’s talk about some guilt laden parening habits. These habits don’e produce good fruit. So, let’s stop doing this.
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What's in this post...
Stopping for Everything
This is where you always immediately stop to deal with the crisis (or fake crisis) the your child is having. Of course I’m not talking about babies or very little toddlers. Although, even then they can wait.
I’m talking about getting in the habit of creating the expectation that no matter what we’re doing, they can just walk up to us and demand things.
They expect that we’re going to drop whatever we’re doing to help them.
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You may be:
- about to take a shower,
- in the bathroom,
- doing a chore that requires concentration, or
- even relaxing.
But then, your child comes up and immediately demand that you help them right now. This goes beyond basic “mom, can you help me.”
This is when they expect you to drop everything and become outraged when you don’t. If this is happening, it’s a sign that you’ve trained them in this behavior.
Now, they expect you to stop (no matter what you’re doing).
The point I’m getting at here is that when we teach them that we will drop it all, anytime…. they stop thinking about us as humans with needs too.
They think that “Whatever is going on with me, no mater how big or small, mom is going to just drop whatever she’s doing.”
The issue with this is not that parents shouldn’t help kids. Of course we should. The issue is if we continually stop everything (even when they are just going on) than we’re creating entitlement.
And, they will carry this into adulthood and relationships.
Forgetting You’re Human
Entitled kids can happen when moms feel guilty and apologize for normal things.
For example, your child routinely screams at you and refuses to do the reasonable things that you told them to do. You get frustrated and then feel guilty about it.
When you act like you shouldn’t get frustrated at frustrating things, or like you shouldn’t get mad at things that make you mad… you are denying yourself those necessary feelings. Then the guilt sinks in and go immediately go and give them whatever it was your kids wanted.
Children intuitively know that people have reactions to things. And so when we, as moms, don’t allow ourselves to react naturally we are creating an entitlement environment.
For example, child draws all over walls with marker. But mom doesn’t feel right reacting strongly to this type of behavior. She feels guilty about yelling.
Some of our reactions are totally normal given that happened. Our kids need to learn that certain behaviors result in certain reactions (in the human race).
We are humans.
We want to….
- be healthy with our reaction,
- be calm and centered, and
- not have disregulated reactions.
But we’re human. When we train our kids not to teat us like humans- and let them do whatever they want, we’re causing entitlement.
Then, when we react like humans and go “grobbling” back to our kids. We’re creating a sense in them that they can behave however they want and nobody is going to be upset with them.
This isn’t what we want to teach them.
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This goes along with doing things we don’t want to do, but doing it anyways. Boundary bending is when you make a rule, but the kids come in and “wood peck” you to submission.
Some call this “badgering.” It’s when the kids are unrelenting in their begging and asking for something.
You eventually get so warn down and give in to their demands. Then you feel…
- guilty, and
- like you want to blame the kids.
In reality, you’re feeling upset because you bent your boundary.
So, stop bending them.
If you’re asking a reasonable boundary (something age appropriate, healthy, good for everyone), but you give in to their “wood pecking…. you’re training them to continue in their aggressive forms of communication.
You’re training them to manipulate. Not manipulation in the evil mastermind way. They are learning to manipulate because they learn that if they “do A” enough times, they will get “B”.
So they keep doing it…
We’re training our kids that if they aggressively ask, we will bend our boundaries.
It’s not something we like as humans when we’re older. Therefore, it’s not something we should perpetuate under our own roof.
Over Functioning/Over Serving
Over functioning has really became a “buzz word.” It’s essentially where we’re taking things on that our kids need to do. We’re doing too much for them.
Now, I’m not talking about your toddler. But, you feel this at every age. As they grow… you can feel them developing and able to take more on.
Say, you go into their room and it’s a total disaster. Instead of waiting for them to come back in and clean up you say, “If it’s going to be done right than I gotta do it myself.”
This actually prevents them from being able to get used to doing these things. You want you kids to get used to doing the things of adult life.
Check out my Chores Guide to get kids started on doing age appropriate chores.
This is a tough one. Please let me know in the comments what you think about this.
My train of thought is that we can fully let our kids get used to the lifestyle that we have created. Because of this, our kids can get used to this “elite” or even luxurious level of life. They can get things without ever having to work for it.
My daughter just went into the 6th grade. Apparently they now have locker shelves available for purchase. I just shoved my stuff in there in school. But, there’s so many options for buying them. There’s cheap ones all the way up to very expensive ones. Does she need the best one out there? I’m thinking here that I should consider want vs. need.
We want to practice the habit of benevolent deprivation.
Without this, we can cause kids to feel entitled to anything they want. They might never reach the same level of lifestyle we have, but we’ve made them accustomed to having material things that they didn’t really need.
Now, they feel like they have to have them in order to be happy. They could also feel like they deserve these material things no matter what.
Parenting to Emotions
We don’t mean to do this, but it’s common. And, a huge issue in modern parenting. It’s one of the ways that cause our lives to become unmanageable.
This is when you parent to emotions instead of healthy boundaries and appropriate rules.
You are parenting to emotions when the compass for your decisions is based on how your child will react.
It’s 11:00 PM and my four year old doesn’t want to go to bed…
- A parent NOT parenting to emotions wouldn’t care what the child wanted. They would just be like “It’s bed time.”
- A parent who is parenting to emotions would say, “I know my child needs to go to bed, but they are gong to hate it… so I don’t want to!”
A downfall to parenting with emotions is that once a mom gets up the “gumption” to hold a rule, she becomes apologetic. This can be emotionally damaging and cause a chid to take advantage of every situation.
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I want you to go with your instincts.
In Job it says, “Who gives intuition to the heart and instinct to the mind?”
You have the intuition and instincts. But when you go against them because of…
- your child’s emotions,
- you’re loosing it in the moment, or
- because you’re trying to be a robot.
These things are unnatural.
Therefore, this unnatural behavior causes our kids to take on entitlement. This doesn’t happen overnight, but overtime as we train them in these things, we’re created patterns of behaviors. These behaviors will carry over into adulthood.