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Friday, January 8, 2010

Raising a Grateful Child

Have you ever had those moments where you just feel like screaming? At someone? Even if that someone is 3 or 4 or 6 and wouldn't understand?

That was my day Monday.

Now, I DID NOT scream. My temper flared, but the children never saw it. In fact, I was a bit TOO angry to let them see me mad.

Why? you ask...

Because JMonster had been given several bags of hand-me-down Spiderman toys from some of our dear friends and all of them had been strewn around the living room. The boxes were torn and stepped on. His guitar was laying on the floor and had scratches and dents in it, and most of the pieces to the games were nowhere near the game they belonged with.

At first I was angry. Smoke coming out of my ears angry.

Then I was just sad and disappointed. These are our kids. And they aren't grateful. They have a playroom that looks more like a toy store, and they don't take care of ANY of their toys or belongings.

And that's OUR fault.

So, how DO you raise a child to be grateful? How do you teach them to respect things as well as others?

I don't know the answer. I'm looking into it. Researching. Praying.

For now, I'm just sad and disappointed that we have failed them in such a huge area of growth...

Too bad a little bribery isn't the answer...


Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

I don't know either... I think you're not alone though. My kids are the same way. Well, actually, my boys are the same. My oldest daughter LOVES and CHERISHES every. single. paper. she has ever written and every picture she's ever drawn and it drives me INSANE. Everything must be kept and loved and displayed. GRRRR

And, I will totally interview you! But give me a few days to think up some questions.

And you should think about putting your email in your profile so that people can reply to you directly in email when you comment. (like me! :-)

Swizz said...

I posted this on my Facebook account and everyone responded there. Here is how it went:

How do we teach them respect for both people and things?

Any suggestions from parents with slightly older children or grown kids?

Yesterday at 11:13am ·
Let me know when you figure it out, please. :-)

Yesterday at 11:16am ·
I can only speak this because of my own experiences - I share stories with them about my childhood (which was not good) and compare with them how much I had -vs- how much they have. This is emotional and physical needs. I also enforce how they should be grateful above all for their salvation, which they do not deserve. When they understand that ... See Moreeverything good they have is from God, (not mom & dad), it lays the groundwork for them to continue to be grateful for the rest of their lives. Just my 2 cents:)

Yesterday at 11:18am ·

The Rev:
Let them go live with aunt anna ;)
Yesterday at 11:24am ·

Well, Eva is not quite 10 months old, but I plan to make service to those who are less fortunate a key element of her upbringing. I want her not only to be grateful but empathetic. I do think it will be challenging to prevent her from focusing on materialism in our society.

Yesterday at 11:42am ·
we have taught ours that everything comes from somewhere and that nothings comes without some cost or sacrifice. i think that are learning the difference between need and want and to appreciate what they have.

Yesterday at 1:57pm ·
We started going through the "toy store" today and collecting items they can give to kids that don't have any toys. VERY tough for a couple of them. We'll see!