Raising Spoiled BratS

A backlash has begun against the all-must-have-prizes culture that has produced children used to getting their own way..
Our little emperors: does worrying do more harm than good?

As the mother of two young daughters,… is used to doling out praise for almost everything they do. Even she was taken aback, however, when her younger daughter, Rachel, now 5, arrived home from nursery clutching a certificate for “sitting nicely on the carpet”.

“It made me wonder what she was doing the rest of the time,” …. “I thought it was a bit over the top rewarding her for something so routine. But it’s part of a whole culture of stickers and smiley faces and ‘celebration assemblies’.”

The received wisdom on child-rearing says nothing should be allowed to damage a child’s sense of self-worth: just last week the Football Association (FA) decided to ban teams including children under eight from publishing their results, for fear of putting the kids under too much pressure if they lost a match.
It is becoming a worldwide trend. A recent production of Snow White at a primary school in Japan featured 25 Snow Whites, no dwarfs and no wicked witch, as parents objected to one child being picked out for the title role. In Sweden a boy was prevented from handing out invitations to his birthday party at school because he was “discriminating” against the two classmates he did not invite.

“Too many kids … are growing up without boundaries, without discipline and without the family structures they need,” he said. “We should bring back discipline and the idea of punishment.”

FYI. This amazing country of ours was built on strength and honor, not touchy feely dimwits who allow everyone to “win”, while eliminating all healthy competition and discipline.

The joy of witnessing these little 4 and 5 year old “rock stars” with their parents fawning over their every move..Uh huh… Asking children what they want for dinner, what they choose to wear, how they “feel” every 15 seconds.

Guess what folks?
Everyone is NOT always a winner.

Common sense, responsibilty for oneself, respect for authority and decency have all been deep sixed in favor of “feeling good alla time.”

These touchy feely kids grow up not giving a fig for anyone but their sorry, self centered selves.
As adults, they remain coddled and over-indulged just as much as children.

Our Pop Idol culture offers “prizes” for every job well done.
What does our culture value? Pushiness, self-centeredness and attention-seeking behaviors seem to be prized far above talent and discipline for men. Looks, thinness, and sexualizing themselves is what is prized for women.

Giving kids a medal for helping tidy his desk or everytime he manages to “sit still”?


How many more rewards, stickers, smiley faces,and dang star charts do these children have to get before they realize this behavior should be expected, not rewarded?

Howzabout we teach our kids to be independent, allow them to fail and actually learn from it. Hmmmm.

To be polite and courteous , yes, and oooh… even competitive!
They will run circles around the little snowflakes who run to mommy (and eventually to government), to complain about every challenge life throws at them.

Between you and me, a huge part of this fiasco has been generated (out of guilt),by women who work long hours outside of the home, spend little time with their children, and have “nannies” do what “mommy” ideally should be doing.
But despite their absentee mothering…………
Their children must be seen by all as a pinnacle of their achievements in life.

You can choose to be your child’s friend, or your child’s parent.


Being buddies may is easier, but only the latter is really raising a child.

The “friendship” part kicks in…when they are much older…and IF, you actually raised them.

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47 Responses to “Raising Spoiled BratS”

  1. Adam's Blog says:

    Supporters in Glass Houses…

    Podcast Show Notes
    Wesley Clark cluelessly attacks John McCain’s executive experience (did he forget who he was supporting.)
    Barack Obama delivers a slick speech on patriotism.
    A pro-life 527 forms to tell the truth about Obama’s support …

  2. Katie says:

    My kids hate the fact that I made them clean their rooms, put their own clothes and toys away, do their homework and didn’t hand out gold stars and awards for everything they did.

    I was also the Mom who didn’t write their papers for them in High School. All their friends’ Moms did that for them. I did proofread them and offered praise when deserved and criticism when needed.

    My daughters are well adjusted, independent women. They don’t need Mommy or Nanny Government to help them out. They don’t need constant praise to do a job well. They are mature adults.

    I am proud!

  3. Conservative Cat says:

    Crazy Obama Rumors Need to be Stopped…

    Today on the Laura Ingraham radio show (I’ve missed saying that), she discussed this article in the Washington Post. The article discusses false rumors about Barack Obama and features interviews with people who believe them. I have always had a……

  4. MK says:

    Oh yeah, this culture of self-esteem is full on Angel, every bloody idiot out there has to get rewarded and coddle to do any bloody thing. I remember over the weekend i watched this touchy-feely program about the children of hollywood celebrities. Good thing i paid my own money to get the TV, cos I almost threw something at it when junior and his bunch of jackasses were pouting on TV telling us how hard their lives were. Get this folks, apparently jackass driving around in his Porsche Carerra, a 100 thousand dollar plus car out here in Australia, lazing about in his Gucci loafers is also strugging just like you 9-5, shop-at-Walmart folk.

    You know why they push this sense of entitlement, reward for behaving yourself mentality? Because that’s the easiest way to raise the next generation of nanny state dependents. If they all need to be coddled and taken care of, then someone out there will have to do it and then the nanny state comes to the rescue, from education to healthcare to crime prevention, the nation takes the easy road down serfdom, cowardice and subservience. A real bonanza for any serious leftie.

  5. Perri Nelson says:

    Our children are too important fot these sort of self-esteem games. The world doesn’t work that way.

    But you know, soon the choice of whether to raise resilient children that know how to deal with disappointment and being disciplined may be taken away from us. Sen. Obama want’s to start putting our infants into state run pre-pre school, so that someone else can raise them for us from birth to alleged adulthood.

    That’s frightening. It’s hard enough to try to raise them right without government interference or the “education system” instilled entitlement mentality when they start at age 5. Start them that early and they may not even have a clue who mom and dad are — assuming that both of them are at home in the first place.

    Public education these days is a good argument for home-schooling if you ask me.

  6. Leaning Straight Up says:

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    It sounds like a joke, and initially I dismiss…

  7. Leaning Straight Up says:

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  8. Aurora says:

    Great post, Angie. It’s amazing that so many people swallow some of the conventional wisdom going around these days about childrearing. “little emperors’ is exactly right. I hate to think what we will reap if we don’t wake up to old-fashioned commonsense and teach them how to survive in this world.

  9. Gayle says:

    Yepper! Spoiled is right. There’s a very conservative woman at my church… politically conservative, but she spoils her children to the point of ridiculousness. Every first Sunday we put out a brunch. There are cakes, pies, fruit, salad, casseroles, ham, chicken, all manners of food, but if there are no donuts, she will run out and get them for her kids because they aren’t happy unless they have donuts. It makes me crazy!

  10. Gayle says:

    Okay… it’s only one of the things that makes me crazy. *sigh*

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  13. elmers brother says:

    sometimes failing is the best education you can get. it’s in failure that we appreciate the times when we win so much more. I don’t think children who grow up this way will find the world so accomodating. What happens when they don’t get the first job they interview for?

  14. darcee says:

    Reason #796 to homeschool — no one gives out awards for sitting quietly or eating lunch with your mouth closed.

    If there was a great big conspiracy that wanted to raise adults who were totally incapable of independence from the government, unwilling and unable to take responsibility for their own lives and needed to have the same rewards (car, houses, consumer goods) as everyone else this would be the perfect scheme for raising children.

  15. Sloane says:

    Timely post, Angel. Parents really need to wake up. Narcissism is often fostered by parents. Visit any college or university campus today, and you will see what I mean. Too many young people love competition but are sore losers. Too many think they are better and smarter than others. Too many young people expect rules to be changed, bent, or disregarded because “they are special.” Too many young people feel put off when someone doesn’t do exactly what they want them to do when they want them to do it. Where do kids learn those things first? From mom and dad.

  16. Brooke says:

    I hear you! I often get dirty looks if I dare to discipline my children in public, and we’re not talking about much more than a hissed scolding or a swat!

    On the other side of the coin, I HAVE gotten compliments on several occasions for my children’s good behavior. One little old lady grabbed my arm as we were leaving a restaurant and gushed about how good the kids were, how no one screamed or threw food, and what a nice dinner it was. Apparently, she expects chaos whenever she sees kids come into the diner, as NO ONE will discipline!

    The sad thing is, discipline builds self-control and confidence, which is just what the kids of these soft parents are robbing their children of with their inane rewards and coddling!

  17. Defiant_Infidel says:

    “You can choose to be your child’s friend, or your child’s parent.”

    THAT is precisely the way the liberal leftists WANT us to view the choice! One or the other, not the FACT that to BE THE LATTER is THE SAME AS BEING THE FORMER! “Perception is reality” as the saying goes. It is all part of the indoctrination of their skewed, warped mentality.

    There are no other two more significant ingredients in effective child rearing than discipline and competition. Discipline demonstrates the idea of punishment for contrary conduct and identifies the difference between good and bad. Discipline also teaches the experience of being denied what you WANT… and accepting the condition. Competition teaches not only the same acceptance of FAILURE. It also provides the motivation to try again (because of other past incidents of satisfaction when accomplishing something that you sacrificed to EARN).

    To raise a child without including these critical elements is NOT raising a child at all. To allow a child to be poisoned by these ridiculous absurdities in the public school arena is to succumb to the “Easy Button”. There can be no better reason to home school or seek a quality private institution.

    Raising a child with boundaries and true instruction IS being a real friend and parent. How useless would our military be without the guidelines of competition and discipline? A really exceptional post once again, Angel!

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  19. Jungle Mom says:

    It seems to be even worse as we now have parents who were not parented! Adults having children when they never experienced good family,life themselves.

    My daughter and I visited an adult day care center and she asked me why people would drop off their old parents like that, but I mentioned that some of those parents probably dropped their children off at day care centers when they were young. What goes around comes around.

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  22. Jack says:

    My kids have a few friends who are going to have terrible problems when they get older and find out that mommy can’t save them any longer.

  23. Joe Gringo says:

    I love this post, our 11 yr old son got straight A’s, last school year, his buddy got something 2 A’s, 4 B’s, he got $100 per A from his parents (which is abolutely ridiculous), he asked my son what he got for getting straight A’s, he told him nothing…..he just said you’re just supposed to get A’s.

    Kids need to learn how to succeed, they need to fail at times, Elmer’s Bro hits it right on the head.

  24. Katie says:

    Actually Joe, paying for grades is not a bad idea. I did that with my kids and my folks did that with me. What an incentive for making good grades.

    Here’s how it went down:
    This was for actual grades on the Report Card and not for test or paper scores. That paid for nothingt.

    HS Level

    A=$50 each
    B=$20 each
    C=Nothing
    D=I had to pay my folks $20 for each D
    F= I had to pay my folks $50 for each F

    Incomplete had better have a good reason or it would cost me $100 each
    Straight A’s meant I got an extra $50 as a bonus.

    If I was having trouble my folks got me a tutor. But I tried to maintain straight A’s. One thing it taught me was hard work pays well.

  25. kevin says:

    Johnny Walker Lindh comes to mind.

  26. The World According To Carl says:

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  27. In_spired says:

    This subject of spoiled kids is one that is at the top of my ‘gritch list’!

    “….a whole culture of stickers and smiley faces and ‘celebration assemblies’.” I retired from teaching at the minimum age just as this was becoming the trend….awarding kids for failure, bad behavior, disrespect so not to mar their self-image!

    The world is now teeming with them….look at them waving their posters and screaming “Yes, We Can!!”…fawning over the one that is going to bring “change” to their lives….

  28. Defiant_Infidel says:

    Real Life… Do You Kid Yourself, Too?…

    OK, she obviously passed on the choice to become trained and prepared to defend herself and the lives of her “babies”. I already know the excuses the leftist mindset offers up for not possessing the defensive firearm tool in our daily travels……

  29. Machiavelli says:

    back, way back, I remember a study on levels of self-efficacy….

    City students had high levels of self-efficacy, the result of of giving gold stars for doing nothing. So basically, these students thought they knew everything, but they scored low on tests.

    Meanwhile, in North Dakota, students tended to have low levels of self-efficacy. Guess what, they didn’t think they knew everything! They weren’t full of themselves and they scored great on tests.

  30. Z says:

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/Utilities/printer_preview.asp?idArticle=15161&R=13A93125C3

    This is THE BEST description of what’s happened to our kids and WHY I have EVER read…it’s well worth reading. And giving to your children who’re raising kids, too!

    great piece, Angel…as usual!

  31. Always On Watch says:

    Angel,
    Spot-on post!

    I remember a time when teachers and parents didn’t appease and kowtow to their children. I also remember when this system of let’s-reward-every-little-thing began.

    These foolish rewards stroke the parents’ egos. Furthermore, I can state as a teacher that the children tire of the constant-rewards system. Ultimately, such a system reduces achievement levels to mediocrity and negatively affect the children’s morale.

  32. Layla says:

    Good post hun and right on the money. A child without discipline and guidance is like weed growing wild. But these days it is hard to distinguish who is the parent and who is the child.

    I swear to G-d Angel I almost had a fit in public one time when I was in the supermarket and the woman in front of me was debating with her six year old kid that wanted a candy bar. She told him no so he THREATENED her. The little brat told her since he could not have the candy bar he would NOT do his homework. Guess what the idiot woman did? Kid you not that fool bought that snot the candy bar and he gloated from here to kingdom come!

    My kids would never have tried that on me. Even my ten year old Autistic child knows right from wrong and how to respect and speak to his parents and elders.

    Parents these days REALLY DO need PARENTING CLASSES.

  33. Adam's Blog says:

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  34. Adam's Blog says:

    Buying the Christian Vote…

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    Obama tries to buy the Evangelical vote while halting between two opinions on gay marriage.  Kos agrees with me that Obama is no new type of politician. (Hat Tip: Stop the ACLU.) And Binky Boy jumps off the bus, Obama has merrily t…

  35. Debbie says:

    Excellent post. I am amazed when I hear things like ‘everybody on the team gets a trophy’, and ‘we can’t play games at school because somebody will get their feelings hurt if they don’t win’, etc. We are supposed to be training kids to be prepared for adulthood. Boy are they going to get a shock when they enter the real world.

  36. Angel says:

    THANKS YET AGAIN FOR THE WONDERFUL ADDITIONS AND INSIGHTS ONE AND ALL! ;)

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  38. Angie says:

    Angel, several years ago, I taught Kindergarten and this was really coming into play then. Self Esteem was on everyone’s tongue.. While I agree self esteem is extremely important, this is nuts! Could it be that this is why we have a nation of dumbed down students? It is in athletics now for the little ones too.

    I was exasperated then and now..let’s just say I am ticked off mightily at the humanistic textbook history altering methods they employ.

    Darn good post

  39. Leaning Straight Up says:

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  42. Panhandle Poet says:

    Yep, we need more real parents and fewer mollycoddlers (don’t ya like my word?)!

  43. Don L says:

    As a teacher and a parent – Angel, you have reached into the soul of America on this one and found it wanting.

    I recall a book that was written in the late fifties -early sixties from a dissident in a well-to-do liberal community -surprise – it was titled the Child Worshippers and attacked this trend in its early days.

    Obviously, no one bothered to listen to the lady that wrote it.
    I also taught the chronically spoiled child of another who wrote a lot of books about child rearing -an expert. She apparently didn’t read it either.

    It’s so simple: people who don’t discipline their children, don’t really love them, as much as they fear conflict and dissaproval from them!

  44. Jim Rockley says:

    What to do with kids at restaurants who run around all over the place,
    and even lay down or sit down on the floor, near the table where you
    are eating? This kind of stuff actually happened.
    I don’t have an answer for this! Except to say that the kids should
    remain seated at a table- till their parents are ready to leave the
    restaurant! If the kids want to leace the table- they should ask their
    parents permission first! By the way- I do realize that there are legimate
    reasons to leave the table- but they should still ask permission!
    As for kids tallking at the table- that should be okay- as long as it is in
    a soft tone of voice- and not real loud, Kids should not be screaming in
    a restaurant! If so, the parents should take the kids home- and ask for
    a bag- so they can take the food home as while! It makes no sense to
    leave the food- just because the kids are being naughty!

  45. Sunflower Desert says:

    Ask TiekiRae and you will find that we were the meanest parents in the world. We’re pretty good buds today though. :)

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