When mom hears about the new bundle of joy you’re expecting a few months down the road, her first instinct is to run to the department store and buying everything off the sale and clearance racks. Pink, blue, yellow, green, you name it; she’s ready to fill your spare closet with little clothes and accessories until the child graduates high school.
As great as it is to have your mother or mother-in-law so excited about the new baby, at the same time, you may feel a little sabotaged. Although most of the time it is completely unintentional, grandparents seem to want to have all the fun for themselves, and forget that the new child you’ve come to expect will be your own beloved treasure. They usually forget that this is yours and your husband’s time to soak up to glories of parenthood.
Who decided that it’s the grandparents’ job to spoil our children? It doesn’t seem like it should be a big deal, since this is typically how society works these days. I know it seems normal for the grandparents to want to spoil their grandchildren, but in all reality, we should not want our children spoiled at all. When a child is spoiled, or given an overabundance of things he or she does not need, but wants, this child will learn to become dependent upon the person that spoils them. If they ask for something, they are given it. If they whine for a box of chocolates in the craft store, they get it. Soon enough the child will figure it out. ‘If I ask, or whine and complain enough, they get it for me,’ and they will use this tactic every chance they get.
There is a difference between spoiling a child and providing for them. To spoil a child is to give them stuff, and more and more stuff. Of course, it is our job as parents to provide for their every need, on occasion to grant their wishes upon request, and to bless them with surprises and gifts. I mean this with all due respect to my own grandmother, but the moral of the story is that typically the grandma knows that the child is using her to get stuff, and she loves it. It is almost like she is buying the love from the child with things in exchange for the appreciation of the parents of the child. My own grandmother out-bought my parents love for me with toys and junk, while she knew my parents suffered through feelings of indecency, though she did it anyway. I grew up asking my grandma for all sorts of things, and I always got exactly what I wanted. I never went to my parents for things, as they did not suffice to my requests, only because they did not want to stoop down to my grandma’s level and buy my love.
The fact of the matter is, no parent should need to buy their child’s love. A child grows up naturally craving love and provision from their parents, and majority of the time the parents are there with open arms, ready to teach and guide their children, but it becomes a challenge when someone, such as a grandparent, steps in to buy the child’s preference and allure them into their world to be spoiled. The grandparents should be there to back up the parents, help them when needed, and suggest opinions when asked. Their job is not to spoil the grandchildren. Children are programmed to love and bring joy to their grandparents, and spoiling would only cause them to grow up dependent.