It seems like one of the primary focuses of Christmas nowadays is gift giving. You have likely heard of the craziness that ensues in many stores during Black Friday sales, or perhaps you have been to a Black Friday event yourself. Many are obsessed with getting the best deals on toys, electronics, and gadgets for their children to open on Christmas morning.
Some people are worried this phenomenon is making children more entitled and spoiled. However, others argue this is normal, and something that has happened for generations. After all, Santa Claus wasn't just invented yesterday; this isn't a new concept. Still, spoiling children at Christmas may make your child ungrateful for what he or she has. This, of course, isn't how you want to raise your child. But is it the number of gifts your child gets for Christmas or the attitude you and your child have on Christmas morning that determines whether or not a child is entitled? Most people would argue it's the latter. If you want to avoid spoiling your child this Christmas, then there are some things you can do.
Remind Them of the Real Reason
Most people use Christmas as a way to celebrate the birth of Christ. Make sure your children know the true reason for the season. Teach them about the birth of Christ and explain the significance to them. There are a few ways you can do this:
Read the Christmas story in the Bible Take your child to a Christmas play Bring your child to church
Maybe you aren't religious but like to celebrate Christmas because it allows you to get together with friends and family. If this is the case, then tell your children why you celebrate Christmas. Make sure they understand it isn't all about getting gifts, but giving to others and enjoying the company of one another. When you instill this in your children early, they will come to realize this is why Christmas is celebrated.
Say Thank You
Saying thank you is one of the easiest ways to show gratitude. Make sure when your child opens each gift, he or she says thank you while smiling at the giver. This can be difficult when children receive gifts they do not like. However, it's important for them to remember it's not about the gifts, it's about the thought. This can be a difficult concept for children to grasp, but with some practice, it can become second nature.
Give the Right Gifts
That being said, you want to find gifts your children will truly enjoy. If your daughter is someone who enjoys spending time outside, they may be happier with outdoor toys than a new doll. If your son prefers staying inside and playing doctor instead of playing sports, getting them a toy doctor kit may be a perfect choice. This can show your children how much you are thinking about them, which can help them feel especially loved. Remember, a child who feels loved is far different from a child who feels entitled.
Let Them Feel the Gift of Giving
Your children would probably love the opportunity to give to others as well. Consider having them draw names of someone on your gift list, and give them an allowance to go to the store and pick something out. Seeing the look on their face when the person opens his or her gift can be priceless.
There are many things you can do to prevent raising an entitled child. It's important to realize that, whether or not you are spoiling your child, entitlement doesn't necessarily have to do with how many presents they receive, but with their attitude.