7 Signs Your Child Is A Spoilt Brat
If your child is entitled, rude, and always wanting to have his own way, you just might be raising a spoilt brat. Find out how to turn things around here.
You may not want to admit it. But if your child is showing signs of being a spoiled brat, maybe you’ve done something wrong as a parent? Yes, we all want the best for our children. But sometimes our best intentions can lead to negative effects. Parenting styles vary greatly, but they all have an impact on children’s development and behaviour. What would your answer be if asked whether you're raising a spoilt brat? No idea! Well, here are some pointers to help you determine the answer, and do a course correction if your answer is yes.
Spoiled and Entitled
It is a part of a young child’s development to assert their independence by saying “no”. It is also normal for them to whine or grumble sometimes – because adults do it too!
Toddlers (between the age of one and three years old) are also prone to temper tantrums, which is all part of normal development.
But if your child is constantly whining to get what he wants; is rude to you and other adults; acts bossy; has a horrible outburst when you won’t give him that new toy he’s been eyeing, then you may just be raising a spoilt brat.
Another warning sign that your child might be a brat is if he is way past the toddler years. Yet he continues to act like one by kicking, screaming, biting other children and not using age-appropriate ways of communicating his thoughts or feelings.
Parents of over-indulged kids will often treat their children as if they are much younger than they actually are. They will be quick to come to their rescue instead of allowing them to resolve problems on their own.
They might even think that their child’s negative behaviour – such as being rude to adults, being aggressive towards other children, acting bossy and demanding – is actually “cute”. And they will just sit back and smile as their little one continues with his unpleasant display.
How You Are Spoiling Your Kids
There is a difference between showing your affection to your child and overindulging them by giving in to their every whim.
You might be spoiling your child if you:
- Don’t set age-appropriate boundaries
- Easily give in and let him have his way instead of enforcing limits
- Let him regularly interrupt and take over adult conversations
- Constantly buy toys and other treats just to pacify him and avoid tantrums
- Allow him to set the rules
- Do not correct him when he is rude or aggressive towards others
- Make excuses for his misbehaving and blame others instead
Of course, some parents think that their child can do no wrong and feel defensive if someone points out their flaws. But it is not healthy or helpful if a child’s parents constantly shield him from the real world and allow him to get his way all the time.
A spoiled child has never had the chance to handle disappointment at an early age. Lessons that they should learn as toddlers, such as delaying gratification and acting within limits, are behaviours they will carry into adulthood.
If parents don’t set age-appropriate boundaries for their children – even as toddlers – they will never learn what their limits are.
Here’s what you can do as a parent to nip the problem in the bud:
Depending on your child’s age, there should be some rules established so that he will know when not to cross the line.
For toddlers, it is better to stick to three or four non-negotiable rules such as no hitting; no biting other people; clean up your toys after you play; etc. It might be overwhelming if there are too many rules.
There’s no point setting rules if you are not consistently applying them. So if you’ve told your child that there will be consequences to their behaviour, but you allow them to continue with what they are doing, they will never learn to take you seriously or respect the boundaries.
If your child is old enough to understand, it’s a good idea to sit them down and talk openly about their behaviour. If they did something you did not approve of, you should pull them aside and tell them immediately.
It also helps to let them know beforehand what is expected of them. For example, if you are bringing them to the library, you should gently remind them to be quiet; not to run around or play catch, and not to tear out pages of the books there. This way, you will not be raising a spoilt brat.
If parents are quick to swoop in and rescue their child from making any mistakes, then it may just set them up for failure later on in life.
You might think that coddling your child is helping his self-esteem. But by shielding him from disappointments in life and over-praising him for every tiny achievement, you will reduce his desire to put in any effort. It also affects his ability to self-regulate because he won’t be given the chance to challenge himself.