Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Update on Entitlement

The Deseret News ran, The age of entitlement: Selfishness is rampant, but can be corrected, experts say, recently.

..."The gratitude is vanishing," Greer says.

This change in behavior is a symptom of a greater phenomenon that psychologists, family experts, sociologists and scholars say is gripping the world. Now, more than ever, entitlement — the idea that "I should get everything I want when I want it, even if I haven't worked for it" — is rearing its ugly head.

But the problem isn't just in preschool classrooms; it's in homes, high schools, offices and even the highest levels of government. It impacts the way children treat their parents and siblings, interferes with education and can contribute to a lifetime of unhappiness, financial instability and disdain for work, experts say....

Talk about entitlement:  Stand Up and Say Something.   The article's mainly not about entitlement, but about respect, but the examples just show how entitled our kids feel.


Amanda said...

I have a class mate who suffers from entitlement issues. When I make suggestions for some changes, she shrugs and says she'd rather not work that hard. She's 20 years old. So, once she moves out of her parents house, then what? Cold reality is a tough lesson if your not prepared.

Emily said...

Wow. Always crazy to see this in action. I'm sure we're all at fault to an extent, but wow.

Stephanie said...

I see this problem everywhere, and I feel like I always have to be on the watch out to make sure I'm not adopting this attitude also. I think one instigator of this attitude is looking around and coveting things of others (without necessarily realizing how hard they've worked). The antidote of this attitude I think is looking at so many others who have so much less than I do, and who work so much harder. Even just the fact that I live in America, rather than Africa, means I live an incredibly blessed life.

Anyway, thanks for sharing! How do you try to help your family avoid this attitude?

Emily said...

Evan's been studying up on the economic discrepancies in our country lately -- like #% own #% of the wealth (I should remember the stats). He mentioned jokingly some podcast he heard that said, well only 97% of Americans own refrigerators -- because shouldn't ALL Americans have a refrigerator - we're a developed nation here!

BUT, my initial reaction to the first part, was, wow, we're doing pretty good, if 97% of Americans have a fridge. We should be grateful compared to pretty much everyone in the rest of the world.

I've been whining lately about our HOT, HOT schools. It makes me mad because considering the wealth we live in, it's ridiculous that poor teachers (and students) have to put up with that. Very few industries do! But, look at other countries. We're pretty lucky to have schools, aren't we!? I still think people should be willing to sacrifice a few more tax dollars so our school can have AC (or eating out once a week, or whatever to cover it), but I think we'd better be pretty darn grateful for what we have.

As for teaching our kids, I think the biggest thing we do when they want something is to say "no" if there's no real reason to get it. The second thing I do is say, "Well did you bring your money?" So, an example, when we're at the grocery store checking out and they pick up candy and want it, I say, "Did you bring your money?" If they brought some, they can buy it. Then they hold the candy a while, if they don't have money, and I say, "It's time to put the candy away" and they do! It's worked with all three kids! I think it's really weird.

Another thing we've trifled with is when they get, say Halloween candy, let them choose a # of pieces, then the rest goes to the family. I always point out we're a team and we need to work together. I'm fine giving allowance for jobs, but we still do family jobs together that they don't get paid for. I'm not one to give an "allowance" for nothing.

Emily said...

Sorry, I hope that made sense. I just re-read it and it could use some editing!

Kimberly said...

Interesting article, thanks for sharing.

Emily said...

I think another thing that I'd like to change with our society is giving our kids so much stuff -- I've mentioned all the little things before, but it seems like because kids get all the little things all the time, then they don't care about the big things either. Example - my kid got a nice gold dollar coin from my dad the other day. Guess where I found the coin that next morning? On the floor in my room. My child didn't even miss it. For that child's b-day we splurged and got a DS lite. He lost it. Luckily, we remembered it was in the car. My SIL told us they got their daughter one of those $100 American Girl dolls. She liked it for a couple weeks, then it ended up in the toy bin with matted hair and the daughter didn't care. If we stopped giving kids all this little junk, maybe they'd actually care about the nicer things (and junky!) we give them. It's all things to them, doesn't matter how much it costs.