The saying, "it's better to give than to receive" is true. If you are a parent, there is no greater joy than seeing your child's face when you give them something that they have been wanting, or surprise them with a gift that they weren't expecting. When it comes to holiday gift giving, it's hard not to go overboard if you have the means. But, is it bad for kids to get everything on their wish list? As a parent, you may be concerned about what you teach your kids when you give them tons of gifts.
"Tons" is a relative term. For some kids, getting a ton of gifts means getting four presents under the tree when they usually get one or two. For other kids it means getting their entire wish list and more. Not every family is in the same financial situation, and Santa Claus doesn't seem have a streamlined approach to gift-giving. Santa may only deliver one gift to some kids, while Mom and Dad buy the rest, and in other families every gift comes from Santa. In some home, Santa delivers wrapped gifts, and unwrapped and unboxed gifts in others. It can be quite confusing when kids get to talking. But that is a whole other can of jellybeans.
The real concern parents have is whether or not they are spoiling their kids by buying them a lot of gifts on the holidays. I dare to say that your kids are not going to turn rotten because you went big on one day.
Important life lessons are learned throughout the whole year, not just on Christmas morning. It's imperative for parents to teach their kids how to be good people, not just from Thanksgiving to Christmas or while the Elf on the Shelf is around, but every day of the year. Kids need to be taught generosity, and learn the joy of giving to others.
Teach your children gratitude, and what Psych Central called "gift etiquette." Explain to them how to react kindly to a present that they don't really like or that they already own. Teach your kids the importance of taking the time to acknowledge each and every gift. Psychotherapist and parenting educator Andrea Nair told Today's Parent that spoiling can happen if kids are allowed to focus more on opening the next gift rather than appreciating what’s inside the one they are holding.
As long as you are dedicated to teaching them good lessons throughout the year, your kids won't get spoiled if they get a couple of extra gifts under the tree this holiday.