As a conscientious parent, you work hard to instill good values in your children and bring them up to be good people. I think everyone has slightly different values and so you bring your children up along the lines that you believe are correct. Some things of course always remain, hopefully we all want our children to become kind, hard-working, honest people to name a few. It is not always easy to know exactly how to teach these values to our children, especially when they are young and things can be misunderstood or misinterpreted by a young child.
Values I think is important for me to teach my children is humility, empathy and to know the value of things. I dont think I am hugely materialistic, (or maybe I am) but I have a habit which drives my husband to annoyance is that when my oldest ask me, for instance, about a large number on a calculator or about an item, I refer to it in a monetary sense. Now, I know this is probably wrong and teaching her to be materialistic to a degree but it is something that I just do without thinking, and it wasnt until he pointed it out to me that I realised I did it. I was brought up to save money, to value items. My parents financially were well but I didnt not get big, expensive presents on my birthdays and christmas, as some of my other friends did. So somehow it seems the message got a bit messed up in my brain and I now look at things with a monetary view, except I truly appreciate the value of money, nowadays more than ever! So in this way, as I am trying to teach my daughter the value of things, I am not doing it in a healthy way.
Also in this way, as I want my children to appreciate the value of things, I want them to appreciate what they have and understand how lucky they are, that there are people who dont have all that we do. To teach them humility. One of my pet hates in life is spoilt people, especially children, I feel sorry for these children, whose parents have too much money and too little interest that they throw money and gifts and gadgets at their children. Of course, every parent want to give their children what they want, but there has to be limits, right? My daughter is always asking for things, as probably a lot of children do, and it drives me crazy. We dont have a lot of money and she has so much stuff already, that it annoys me that she is not happy and always wants more. So I try to explain to her how fortunate she is to have all that she has and that she should be happy with what she has. And then I was thinking about this lesson, I was trying to teach, probably unsuccessfully as we have had this conversation many a time. And it occurred to me, am I teaching her the right way, or am I teaching her to 'settle', to be happy with her lot and not to strive for more? Are not the two lessons quite similar and could potentially get mixed up? What do you think?