One of the things that I want to instill in Shecky is a sense of altruism. I want him to have the desire to help others when there's nothing "in it" for him other than having done something that makes a difference to someone. I'm finding its one of the most difficult lessons to teach him.
I informed him two days ago that we will be going through his MULTITUDE of toys and boxing up many of them that he no longer plays with. I explained that we would be donating them to a local shelter for kids that were much less fortunate than him. Kids who's mommy's and daddy's were cruel to them. Kids who were beaten and abused by their parents and forced to leave them for their own safety. I told him how, many times, these kids have nothing to give them comfort or make them smile and feel happy. His response to me? "But... ::sniffle:: they're... MIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINE!!!!"
I know, I know he's only 6. He's an only child. He's spoiled ROTTEN by us AND his grandparents. Blah, Blah, BLAH! I'm at a loss as to how to make him understand how important looking beyond himself and his "wants" is. We've been cracking down on his misconception that every time he goes into Walmart he gets something. We've been limiting his time for doing what he wants and started making him do things that are necessary yet "not fun" or "not fair" (at least in HIS estimation).
I really am beginning to fear I've failed my child and waited too long to start impressing this ideal upon him. He's a great kid. He's got a loving heart. He's just so damn self-involved it makes me wanna scream. I don't want him to be a brat as he grows older. Any suggestions? Anyone else having these issues? Am I just overreacting? Am I expecting to much of him? Am I failing him?
I found this story about a teenage girl who took her parents similar desire into her heart and her own hands and did something AMAZING with it. She's my hero for the week. Go read her story!