While lying in bed, recovering from a severe flu, it dawned on me that we are responsible for an entire generation of spoiled and lazy young people…and by “we” I mean you. That may sound harsh and judgmental but my kids are grown and highly responsible, gainfully employed, hard working individuals. So, it wasn’t me,
and probably not too many in my generation…but those of you who whined until you got the soccer team (or whatever sporting team applies) to give all the kids a trophy for “showing up”…c’mon! That is exactly what creates an entitlement attitude. Life isn’t fair! The sooner you buck up and face it, the sooner you can find a way to deal with it. Little Johhny who doesn’t hear “no” until he’s 16 and in the back seat of his car with Susie and has no way to deal with the word or the concept or the feelings it creates because he’s never had to deal with it before now either rapes Susie, or he comes to school the next day with dad’s hunting rifle and starts shooting everyone who looks at him like they might say no.
You don’t get a paycheck because you show up at work, you get a paycheck for doing something at work. Olympians don’t get medals for showing up at the Olympics, they get medals for being the best. Being the best Olympian means they worked hard for years and made sacrifices to get that good. That’s the kind of message we need to be giving our kids. That it takes dedication, hard work and sacrifice to get the goodies. To teach them anything less is unfair to them and the rest of us because it teaches them the wrong values and kids who feel cheated of their entitlement too often hurt others.
So stop. Let them get their feelings hurt when they are little and then help them deal with those feelings in a healthy way. Kids don’t need pity or a trophy for showing up. Kids need an example to live up to. Kids need help learning how to deal with their emotions. Kids need adults who are strong enough to help them learn how to be responsible, hard working teens and adults.
Be a strong adult and help the kids learn the right kinds of lessons so that they can cope in a world that is unfair on a daily basis.