Monday, January 20, 2014

Man, I am so sick of all those entitled bratty children. Tell me about it.

I keep reading all these posts, articles, and long drawn out opinions of our generation raising "wimpy, entitled children." And frankly, if I'm going to be blunt and honest around here, it is so eye rolling and ignorant that I just wonder how these people are raising their own children. 

Statements made by older generations. Statements made by younger generations. Statements made by parents with older children, younger children, and even by those with no children at all. Everyone has an opinion of how parents are raising their children, and it always seems to fall back to one similar idea: this next generation is entitled, whiney, and are nothing compared to "the good old days". Harsh, I know. And so very generalized that it's almost not worth entertaining. Yet, here I sit, entertaining this very idea.

So when did we all of a sudden become experts on what will/will not produce a wimpy child? And better yet, when did we become qualified to predict the future, and the personality traits of adults that are merely children right now? Sure, there are situations that one cannot help but roll their eyes at. Parents looking for jobs for their adult children. Sure, there are situations that make you question why times have changed. Parents ridiculing the teacher for a child's poor test scores, versus the child. Sure, there will always be questionable things, questionable techniques, and just questionable people in general doing questionable things. That is life. Full of big fat question marks. But to sit there and actually categorize children wimp versus not based on parenting decisions like letting kids run around the neighborhood without adult supervision? That's just complete nonsense.

Let us take a look at a few scenarios so we are all on the same page of what we are talking about when we mention entitled bratty wimpy children.

That mom is hovering all over that child, coddling that child, and not doing him/her any good. Wait, what? The child is 2-3 years old? Maybe younger? And you are worried about a mom coddling the child? What do you know what is or isn't good? No, you see the mom who is hovering over her child climbing at the park isn't some helicopter mom, she may happen to be a mom that knows a mom that now has a paralyzed child because she worried about not being "that mom." So you've spent a mere 10 seconds observing the scenario and you have already decided what the future holds for this family? Please, move along.

My kid will stand out in the rain like I did growing up while I stay in the house. Not raising a wimp over here. Because having a 5 year old, 7 year old, or whatever age we are talking about here stand out in the rain is teaching big lessons? Man, those terrible moms for sitting in their cars and allowing their child to actually sit with them while they wait for the bus. Yes, you're right, so entitled those children will be. If you're trying to raise children that aren't wimps by having them stand in the rain, then why not join them? Because it doesn't prove anything. Because at the end of the day, standing out in the cold, snow, or any other kind of weather will not qualify them to be some hard, independent, and most likely to conquer the world adult in the future. It just won't. It's just weather.

A child throws a tantrum in the middle of the grocery store. Full blown tantrum. People around eye roll, whisper, and make a comment around the lines of... "If that were my child... or when I was a child... my parents would have spanked me straight. " And then the assumption is automatically made that any parent who doesn't spank and happens to have a kid who throws a tantrum from time to time, doesn't know anything about discipline. Insert here---raising entitled and bratty child.

Growing up, we ran around the neighborhood and came home for dinner as kids. Now? Parents have to go along to play dates and can't let a child leave their sight. You're right. They do. You know why? Because kids were abducted. Because kids were molested and murdered. Because there are a whole lot of sick, cruel people out in the world and there are few that can be trusted. Gosh, does this mean that my kids have to live in fear? No. But at this age, they don't know any better. Hell, I didn't know any better about what life really meant until I turned 18. To me, I was unstoppable. Fearless? Sure? But pretty darn stupid, and it's mere luck that I'm even alive today. But at age 7, 8, 9? I don't understand what murder is, and I sure as hell cannot fight off an adult man. So yes, times have changed, and yes parents have to keep a closer eye on their young children. And if you dare called a child a wimp to someone who has lost their child due to an abduction or murder while those kids were "just playing in the neighborhood," I bet you would come out with a whole new perspective. You and I? The kids that grew up in the era of leaving at sunrise and coming home at dark? We didn't turn out "just fine" and there is no need to say "look at us, we turned out okay." Why? Because we were just the lucky ones. Pure luck. Stop with the "we turned out fine" phrase. Because there are plenty of kids who didn't.

My question to anyone who actually believes these statements of parenting and the way that children are being raised "these days" is this: 

How do you know that any of these actions are a direct reflection on whether or not a child will grow up feeling entitled or better yet, as people like to put it, "little wimps" or not.
How do you know that what you are doing is full proof "My child will be hardworking, independent, and successful in life." While that child will not.

How do you know? HOW.

Although we are the parents, and although I think parenting is 95% {maybe a stretch} of how a child turns out, there is no way of being certain that what we are doing is going to breed a certain kind of adult. Have we kept in mind that there are other factors in a child life that may affect them? That they do leave the house, they do interact with others, and that they will be in situations where we are not present to guide them? In fact, have we even taken the time to take into consideration that children have different personalities and that we cannot force a certain trait on them? Such as being fearless. As much as you may want that for your child, and as much as one may strive to be the parent that teaches that to their child, is there any guarantee that all children will turn out this way if we do/do not do certain things?

And therefore, have you failed as a parent if they do not end up being that child. That poster ideal child. Have you thought that maybe they were never born that way, and never will they be that way. That perhaps something may have occurred in their life, childhood or not, that has changed them and their outlook on life. Man, can we stop for a moment and remember that children are their own person. They do not all fit some sort of mold, and they certainly do not all react the same to all parenting techniques. 

I sit here and I look around and think about our very own country, and the older generations that people speak of {the hard working ones}, and I cannot help but notice that the "era" that we speak of happened to also raise a bunch of, well,  entitled and wimpy adults. Apparently teaching them to be tough and fearless by letting them stay out late, stand out in the cold, and learn to just take the heat didn't exactly go as planned. In fact, it's these same people that expect something out of nothing. The same people that want the nice things, but don't want to work for it. The grown men and women who live int their retired parents' home and refuse to get a job. The people who have a college degree but are just "too good" to get a job serving tables or a cashier at your local grocery store. 

Perhaps letting your kid stand out in the rain will in fact cause them to be strong and fearless. But maybe to my kid? It traumatizes them and they resent me for it? Extreme? Perhaps. But possible? Yes. 

Will I know now what of my actions as a parent will do to my children in the future? No. Will you know what yours will? No. Can we agree that we are probably all trying to do what we feel is in the best interest of our children?

I'll choose bigger lessons to teach my children then about being tough and not being wimps.

I'll teach my children to respect others. Especially their elders, those in uniform, and people that they work and learn amongst. But I will also teach them that respect goes both ways, and to always expect respect in return. 
I'll teach my children that success comes from hard work and hard work only. That you put the time in, and your best individual effort, and to not compare yourself to others when we don't get the outcome we were looking for. 
I'll teach my children to never embarrass others and to always be the bigger person and stand up for those that need us. That bullying is never accepted and it ends when we decide to stand up to it as individuals. 
I'll teach my children to celebrate another person's success, even those who achieve what we worked towards. To show praise and gratitude, rather than being bitter and resentful.
I'll teach my children that people, friendships and family is more important than things. That happiness will never come in the form of a huge home, unless you have loved ones to share it with. 
I'll teach my children the value of forgiveness. That we will continue to make mistakes as we were born sinners, but we are bigger than the mistakes we make and we become better when we are aware of our own flaws. 
I'll teach my children the importance of giving versus receiving. That we should always give back what we have been blessed with in our lives. That there are things---such as food, our home, and the clothes on our backs, that we should never take for granted. 
I'll teach my children to learn, and to never stop learning. To ask questions when we don't understand. To look into things that we feel passionate about. To find the answers even when no one can give them to us. That the world is always changing, and that the power of education is life changing.  
I'll teach my children to not judge what they see on the outside. To not evaluate a situation based on what our eyes see. There is much more to life, and much more to a person than what we encounter in our day-to-day world. Unfortunately, I learned this lesson the hard way. By judging many people I never should have.
We call these innocent children out---some that are only 3, 5, 10 years old as wimps and brats, and they have yet been given a chance to prove themselves. Who is to say that the quiet, shy, fear of heights kid won't grow up one day and save your kid's life. Who is to say that the fearless, strong, highly social and independent kid won't grow up and make a tragic mistake that costs his or another person's life. 

Who is to say what is or what isn't going to come of a child based on silly observations.

Shame on anyone who judges someone else.
A bigger shame on anyone who even thinks about judging a child.

This is what is wrong with the world. THIS. 

"Entitled, bratty" adults that think they have it all figured out.


  1. I read an interesting article discussing what our parents were told about finding a job and the economy boom and what we were told about finding a job and the economy crash. Our generation was told by our parents in an economy boom to find a job that fulfills us vs any job that we can get. So now there are people who feel entitled like you mentioned. Will my son be a wimp? Sometimes he falls and we can tell it wasn't too bad and we tell him shake it off. I had to wait under an umbrella for the bus because both my parents worked. Am I reluctant to ever go back to work because 3 boys home alone scares me? Yes! Probably just having 2 brothers guarantees my boys won't be wimps. The parents blaming teachers for poor test scores is a very real and serious problem. You have to be in the classroom like I am to see that there are a lot of parents getting it very wrong. The lack of respect and entitlement I've seen is at least 1 or 2 kids in every class. That's a lot of kids. All I can do is try to help when I'm in the classroom and raise my boys to respect teachers.

  2. I loved this because every point you made is one that my father in law makes on the reg. He is the most negative, pessimistic person I've ever met and I find it often hard to be around. He thinks that everything was better back in his day. He doesn't understand why tv's have to be in color -- talk about old school. Haha! I respect him because he's my husbands father and I don't engage in debates with him because he's an elder, but man does it kill me when I have to listen to him go on rants about "kids these days" and whatnot. I just cringe...

  3. Thank you. I was horrified by the amount of parents that were angry when schools were closed due to the frigid cold recently. Isn't knowing your child is safe, and not stuck out in the very below freezing temperatures more important than having a few hours to yourself? And let's be honest...most of our generation was NOT given a tough life, so I'm not sure what they're complaining about.

  4. Really liked this post! You bring up some great points. I can't stand "generation blaming" as I call it.

    A few years ago I heard some older people discussing how spoiled children caused the economy to crash. How ignorant! I just ignore nonsense like that and walk away.

  5. Great Post! You make a lot of valid points about perception and parenting. Nobodies perfect, so why do people like to judge as though they are.

  6. Parenting has changed a lot since our parents were raising us. It's a different world. I think we're doing the best we can for our kids, and we are the only ones who know our child the best.

  7. Oh boy I love your posts. More than anything it seems that we are a culture that feels so comfortable judging and ridiculing others. Let's all focus on understanding, empathy and compassion. Why can't we all just accept that we all make different decisions, choices and just because we don't necessarily agree doesn't me we can't get along and gasp even be friends.

  8. I typically love the posts you do, but I'm wondering why the post focus recently on "others" apparently being so judgemental of "others" - and you end your post with this:

    Shame on anyone who judges someone else.

    A bigger shame on anyone who even thinks about judging a child.

    This is what is wrong with the world. THIS.

    "Entitled, bratty" adults that think they have it all figured out.

    Not quite following the lesson of the day here... :(

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Ok, sorry, I gotcha. I completely misunderstood the parenthesis. :) I love your posts and you really are inspirational - so please don't take my comment wrong - it was my misunderstanding.
      Take care!

    3. Quotation marks, oops mean that those are words stated by others. Quoting others here. There is a reason why I put " " in rather than just stating Entitled, bratty adults. It's put there for a purpose.

      I apologize that you did not catch that, although you quoted it correctly, so not sure how that was misunderstood?

      No lesson of the day. Just writing from the heart. Thank you for such kind words though.


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