Charity · Community Pool · Conspicuous Consumption · discover · Family Dynamics · Giving Back · gratitude · Holidays · Learning to Scale Back as a Parent · Teaching Children Humility · Uncategorized

Are We Giving Our Kids Too Much?

This may be one of my more obnoxious posts-there, you’ve been warned! As the holiday season has embarked upon us full-throttle, I’m faced with the annual question of “what does Jack want,” or “what do you want me to get for Jack,” or better yet, “what does Jack need?” Every time I’m asked this question by well-meaning loved ones, I cringe. I cringe not because they’re asking or because we’re so fortunate to have such loving, caring, and generous people around us whom wish to celebrate the holidays and include our son. Instead, I cringe because my husband and I finished our shopping months ago and between that shopping and my immediate family (three siblings, my parents’, and very generous family friends who may as well be family), I simply don’t have an answer. Nine-out-of-ten-times, I’ve already completed his list, and I find myself wracking my brain for, all too often, vague things our little boy may like.

I always feel terrible doing this. I want so badly to have a concrete answer. A physical, material thing in which our loved one may go and purchase without the complication of playing any guessing games as a result of my vague suggestions. I feel guilty knowing this person has consciously decided to spend his or her hard-earned money on my child, and I wasn’t even able to come up with a working suggestion as to what my own child would like. What’s the alternative, though? Am I to answer, “Oh, we’ve completed Jack’s “want” list already this year?” I can’t fathom giving that response; it just seems so rude and boisterous.

I think its safe to say, that yes, we do give our children too much. At least my husband and myself do. In light of this we have started a new tradition this year where we take a family trip to our local big box store and Jack picks out a toy to be donated to Toys-for-Tots. I’ve always made the donation,, but I feel he’s both old enough and aware enough this year to participate in the process.

So, fellow bloggers, how do you handle all of the excess our children are faced with today? I look forward to reading your responses.

 

 

 

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