In the land of the spoiled how to do we keep our kids grounded?

At around 3:45PM today I saw Meg Ryan coming out of a local store, and thought about my last post regarding taking time for myself. Meg Ryan who is usually with her daughter Daisy was out alone running errands. It was nice to see that she was taking time for herself. The reason I am bringing her up is because although she is a celebrity, she looks like a low key person who does not seem to spoil her children and really spends time with them when she is not working. For someone who has a lot of money, that is refreshing to see. I don’t know for sure what goes on at home, but with Meg Ryan’s own low key dress style and persona, I am assuming that her children are raised in a grounded environment.

Before I saw Meg Ryan, I was at our local frozen yogurt place getting an afternoon treat for my B. Normally, I take B straight home from school, but today, at 90 plus degrees, being an unusually hot day in Los Angeles for mid September, (we call it Earthquake weather), I decided to take her out for an after school treat.

In the frozen yogurt place, there were 2 teenage girls standing in front of me in line from a local school. The one girl was taking forever asking the man behind the counter about every kind of frozen yogurt and asking for a taste of each and every flavor to try to decide what she wanted while the line grew huge behind her. Not caring about the line behind her, she continued to ask for additional flavors, while the onlookers grew impatient. Her friend, looking embarrassed, looked over to me and said, “I am so sorry, why don’t you go first while we are still deciding.” I said, “great idea thanks.” The girl who was tasting the frozen yogurt, looked over, visibly annoyed that her friend, let others get in front of her. I ordered my flavors, and got my frozen yogurt and sat down with my B for her afternoon treat.

Aside from the fact that girl number one was inconsiderate, she was also wearing 2 Cartier Love bracelets with diamonds on it, and had a Louis Vuitton Wallet, the giant one. I don’t need to tell you what these bracelets or this large wallet retails. My issue is that this teen girl who is probably under 16 years of age is given all these very expensive material items by her parents. I blame her partially for her bad attitude, but I blame her parents for raising such a self centered, obnoxious, spoiled young person. What could she possibly contribute to our society if she is given everything, and she cannot learn basic manners?

Now, before you make comments to me like, “you hate people with wealth”. Don’t go there. I am not that person. I like nice designer things, I appreciate all that I have, and I work hard for what I purchase. The issue here is that this girl, full of attitude, is very young, and has obviously been given everything, and has not been taught any consideration for other people, or what it means when one is lucky enough to have so much without having ever worked for it. Her friend, on the other hand, who also had a large Louis Vuitton wallet (which I saw while they were paying), was considerate enough to let me know that I can go ahead of them, since her friend was taking her time making a decision about which frozen yogurt flavor she desired. These small actions to strangers say a lot about upbringing and personality. This small situation told me so much about these 2 girls and how different they were even though they obviously went to the same school, and probably had the same economic background.

I was upset because I was thinking about all the young people who grew up like this in our society today who were being spoiled daily. These young people are given every material advantage, and then made to believe that they are the center of the universe. This type of upbringing will make a future society full of people who cannot take responsibility for their actions, and cause more problems in society.

This is a broad statement, but I think that children who are allowed to grow up acting entitled and spoiled, cannot really function in normal jobs, or in normal relationships. These are the same people who have credit problems because they cannot manage their finances and won’t accept that they need to live within their means when mommy and daddy are no longer there to pay their bills. These same people who grow up with no regard for others, cannot manage good relationships with friends or spouses, and end up unhappy and possibly divorced because they cannot figure out how to make compromises in their relationships. Now, I am not saying divorce is bad, divorce should always be an option when the relationship is just not working when both people have tried their best to make it work. But, I think you understand my point of view here about these spoiled young people who don’t grow up with limitations or consequences in their daily lives.

I just felt I needed to share this little episode today that I witnessed because I am hoping that parents will read this, and consider what we can do as parents, to make sure our children, grow up to be responsible and considerate people in our society of tomorrow.

We have recently had some rude awakenings with the mortgage crisis, and the Wall Street fiascos, and I do believe that some of these crises were started by people who were raised as spoiled, self centered, irresponsible children.

My hope for my B is that I can raise a considerate and kind person. I just know that more material things is not the way to go, more quality time, is what we as a society need to invest in our children.


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