If you spoil your child, you are creating a person who does not want to share, cannot wait his turn, is unappreciative and always wants his way, according to WebMD. If you consider those traits to be bad behavior, then spoiling a child most definitely causes it. Children with these traits are not only unpleasant for you to live with, but they often have a difficult time out in the real world when they discover that not everyone will give them what they want.
Don’t Do Too Much
If you get into the habit of doing things for your child that she is old enough to do for herself, this is one way of spoiling her, and it will lead to bad behavior. For example, by the time most children are 3 or 4, they can dress themselves, brush their hair and put away their toys. If you continue to do these things for your child, she will come to expect this service. Instead of appreciating what you do, children this age will only come to expect that you do even more for them and will become demanding, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.
Set and Enforce Rules
Even if you allow your child to be independent and to do things for himself, if you are too lenient and do not set or enforce rules, you could be spoiling your child and creating an environment of bad behavior. Some parents give in to avoid the hassle. Some parents don’t want to see their children unhappy; others are afraid that they will lose their child’s love by not giving in. These kinds of thoughts and behaviors will lead your child to believe that rules don’t apply to him, and he will become difficult to live with. Other children and even teachers at school may not like your child very much if he displays this type of entitled attitude, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.
Introduce Diverse Cultures
When you spoil your child, you are not teaching her to be responsible or social. Besides setting and enforcing rules and being consistent with the rules, it is important to expose children to diverse environments, says Dr. Steven Adelsheim, psychiatry professor at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, on the WebMD website. If your child sees children who live with challenges, for example, she may become more sensitive to others.
Unspoiling Your Child
If you already have a spoiled child who exhibits bad behaviors, you have some unspoiling to do. Have a talk with your child, and tell him what things around the house are going to change. Tell him that you still love him but that you made some mistakes in how you were raising him and that is going to change now. Of course, your child may protest, but do not back down. You are not doing him any favors by allowing the spoiled behavior to continue.
Don’t Give Up
To keep from spoiling your child in the first place or to unspoil your child, you and your husband need to set rules, be consistent with the rules and present a united front. So that you don’t come across as being too strict, let your child make some choices, but these choices must be ones that you give. Don’t be defeated. Your child’s happiness depends on this.
- upset girl image by Dmitri MIkitenko from Fotolia.com