Posts Tagged ‘waiting’

Everyone Has Nicer Things Than Me!

Friday, January 6th, 2012

The little one had a meltdown today. Her friend down the street got a new bike for Christmas. She doesn’t have a new bike. The neighbor boy got a new bike for Christmas, too. Why didn’t she have a new bike? Everyone has nicer things than she does. Just ask her. She was sobbing and telling us how terrible her life was because she didn’t get a new bike for Christmas. The doll that talks, the roller blades, the doll highchair, the new COMPUTER, the numerous other items under that tree pale in comparison to the new bike her friend has. At first, I sent her to her room until she could tell me ten things she had that she was proud of. She just couldn’t find anything that could compare with the new bikes.

So I decided it was time for her to learn a hard lesson. There will always be someone who has something nicer than you have. I pointed out that other people have bigger houses than we do. Other people we know have nicer cars. Grandpa got in the act and complained that other people had nicer computers than he does. Other people have bigger aquariums than he has. Her response? “It’s not fair!” My answer? “Life is not fair!” It was time for her to recognize that, while there may be others who have more, there are many others who have less. She has her own room done up in pink and white just like she likes it. Many children don’t even have a room at all. Our car works just fine and helps us give rides to those who don’t have cars at all. Whenever she complains of being hungry, we tell her to go in the cupboard and get a snack. Many children don’t have cupboards or snacks at all. I could see that these were concepts that were simply outside her ability to understand. If they didn’t have a room, they should just get a bigger house. Their parents should just go buy a car and go to the grocery store. I tried another tactic.

I explained that we can’t always have what we want the minute we want it. I pointed out that I had wanted a breakfast nook table for our kitchen for a long time. I didn’t have the money right away to get what I wanted so I had to wait until I saved enough money to get it. That she understood. Sometimes you have to wait and save up your money. The tears stopped. Unfortunately, not because she was embracing the lesson but because all this talk about saving money reminded her that she hadn’t gotten her allowance yet. Whenever she gets her allowance, she gets to go to the store and spend it. This time was no different. She had to go shopping. She is content in the knowledge that we will do the saving for the bike while she does the spending of her allowance for other things. Someday I will have to explain that she is the one who has to work for what she wants and that it is her money that she has to save to get it. Preferably before she goes to occupy Wall Street with the rest of the dreamers who think they should have the good life without working for it.