Are you dealing with an entitled kid? Many kids today have a distorted idea of what they deserve or think they should get just because they exist.
I wish it were not so, but this is the world we live in today. More stuff seems to equal more love by worldly standards. Boy, are we out of whack as a society!
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Some of this entitlement is created by our kids and the media, but some of it is created by us, the parents. Yep, we have to share some of this blame. We give in to our kids with every want and whim to keep them happy.
I understand your frustration. As a parent, there is a fine balance between meeting their needs (and a few wants) and being excessive.
Frankly, some of their wants feel like needs just to keep up with the “Joneses.”
And that is the rub. Explaining that an older iPhone is just as good as a newer one is not easy when “everyone else” has the latest and greatest model.
Sadly, no matter how many times you say “no,” it doesn’t make your kid any more grateful. Sometimes you have to go on the offensive and work on your child’s heart to help him be grateful for what he has been given.
Table of Contents
What Is An Entitled Child?
An entitled child is constantly concerned about image, popularity, and friends. She is typically egocentric and is willing to do anything to make sure she maintains her image. She is emotional and will throw a tantrum or manipulate to get her own way.
Sadly, social media has exacerbated this attitude because it is all about selfies, who you are with, and what you are doing.
Typically, an entitled child or an entitled teenager is disconnected from family or parents and doesn’t feel he should have to participate in family activities or help out at home. He doesn’t understand how his behavior affects others when he leaves a mess, acts ugly towards siblings, or ignores his parent’s requests.
He is super sensitive about individual rights, judging, and justice without understanding the complete picture as it is slanted to their world.
An entitled child is hard to correct or teach. He thinks he already knows everything. Furthermore, they are unpleasant to be around for any amount of time because of their attitude.
Many entitled kids think parents do not have a right to impose their family values on them because mom and dad don’t understand how the world really works.
By definition, this describes most kids to some extent. If you think you are seeing some of these things, check out how to unspoil your entitled kid.
How Do I Teach My Child Not To Be Entitled? 9 Tips That Really Work
Check out these life-changing tips to unspoil your accidentally entitled kid. Unfortunately, it takes time to undo what has been done so don’t get discouraged.
The most important thing is to be consistent. Over time, you should see a difference in your kid if you change the way you are parenting.
Your kid needs to work some. If he is too young to have a job, then let him earn money doing chores around the house. Ask him to clean his room, do his laundry, etc. (You decide what is good for your home.)
Kids are self-centered by nature, so breaking this lazy streak is hard. They will naturally complain and gravitate toward excuses so they don’t have to help. Keep working on the attitude. Some kids take years to get it right.
We asked our teens to give 10% of their earnings to the church. This helps ward off greed. My husband and I practice this same principle as well. If you don’t model it, don’t expect your kids to do it.
3. Volunteer/Mission Trip
My family has gone on several mission trips, and one of my kids went to Guatemala with other teenagers. I think this is the best thing we ever did as parents. It was life-changing for our whole family. Our kids saw what poverty looked like, and they learned to serve those who could never pay them back.
There is no textbook, TV commercial, podcast, or post that can teach gratitude like real life. In my opinion. life experience is the best way to deal with an entitled kid. They will not be the same after this experience.
Give your teenager a certain amount of money and then let them figure out how to allocate it. They can add any earned money to make up the difference.
There is nothing wrong with wanting your kids to participate in activities such as sports, shopping, or dances. Just do it for less. If they want more, they can work for it.
5. Set Boundaries
Set boundaries in your home. If you have expectations for your child to be home at a certain time, dress a certain way, or help around the house, then enforce it. If you don’t stay consistent, then your child will not do it and nothing will change.
6. Let them fail
You may be tempted to step in when your teenager does not get up in the morning, complete homework, or follow through with chores. Instead of reminding him to do his work, let him fail. Allow the natural consequences to hit him if it is at school.
If it is at home, then have consequences in place and enforce it. The more you step in and enable, the longer it will take for him to learn. Some kids need to take the field trip multiple times to get it right.
7. Regulate your emotions
Regulating emotions is probably one of the hardest things to do. If you are naturally emotional, you may get triggered when your child is disrespectful, doesn’t do his work, or blames you when things go wrong. You are the adult. It is up to you to be a good role model.
Separate yourself from your teen’s behavior. It is easy to get embarrassed or want to yell when he fails a class, has to serve a suspension, or doesn’t do what he is told.
Continue to love him even if he makes poor choices. It’s okay to grieve. Your heart may be broken and you may get angry. Just do it appropriately.
8. Help not enable
Help your teenager when he needs help. If it is a problem he is capable of working through on his own, then don’t step in. Let him figure out how to navigate friendships, school issues, and sports. If he doesn’t know how to do something, take the time to teach him or find a tutor.
The goal is for your teenager to be independent when he goes to college. He needs to learn how to problem-solve before then. Your home is a great place to practice before he is on his own.
Pray for the relationship with your kids. Ask God to show you how to love them well even if they are acting like an entitled kid. It is not an easy time to navigate because there are so many heightened emotions at any given hour.
Pray for creative ways to reach your kids without exasperating them. You won’t always get it right, so learn to forgive yourself and your kid when things go south.
How I Fix My Entitled Child?
If you want to unspoil your entitled kid, encourage positive change.
Praise her when she makes good choices so she knows she is going in the right direction. Engage with her and let her know how much you love her. At the end of the day, your child just wants to be loved.
You may have enabled your child and done too much in the past. When you step back and allow your child some freedom, you may be surprised at what he can do on his own without you fixing everything.
The most important thing is to react appropriately with truth and love. There are times of grace, but overall, you have to change the way you do things to see real change. It is worth it in the long run as you will no longer have an entitled kid who expects to get whatever he wants.
Have you accidentally raised an entitled kid? What suggestions do you have to help him be grateful?
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