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  • Writer's pictureR T

Teach Your Youngsters to Say No

A dear special friend shared a story with me. For the sake of anonymity, I will not use their real names.

Let me share with you the story of Nora and her young sister Fiona. They grew up in different households.

"Fiona" grew up with different parents in Denver and, the two sisters had the opportunity to see each other at school.

Unlike most siblings in various foster care, Nora's foster parents were doing well. Her dad was an ex NFL player. Once he retired, he went into real estate and, her mom managed the businesses for her husband.

Nora never had to do without materialist things.

Nora got whatever she requested, and sometimes more than she needed. Fiona's foster home wasn't too different. Her dad worked as a forensic accountant and earned a six-figures. The only difference between Nora and Fiona was that Fiona's parents inculcated the reward-for-work mentality in her and her siblings. They denied her certain items like smartphones until she was fifteen. Whenever the two siblings met in school, they narrated their experiences. Nora felt her sister wasn't getting enough affection.

At age fifteen, Nora could bring a boyfriend over. Her parents thought they were doing what was best for her.

It's difficult at times to coach as young parents who have been through difficulty as kids and are now bent on making sure their kids get whatever privilege they couldn't afford growing up.

I think you already have an idea of where I'm heading with this story.

Freewill is one of the most dangerous gifts given to humanity. Humans more often do not know how to use it. Let me give you an example. According to a friend of mine, he feels Combat soldiers do not have the right to free well. They are in institutions that instill discipline and self-control. This discipline allows them to have the best judgment in times of pressure.

The story of Nora and Fiona did end, as most of you might predict. While Fiona graduated from a state college and owned a business, Nora barely finished high school. She got pregnant in eleventh grade. And since then, she's had three additional kids for three different men. One of the men is her stepdad.

It wasn't the gifts that ruined her life, but she was never taught the meaning of the word no.

Loving my son included teaching him he could not always have what he wanted. The greatest gift I could give was for him to understand why I was saying no and choices sometimes have consequences.


If you know of someone who may have been a victim, please point them in the right direction.

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Feb 02, 2022

This read is indicative of what a teacher endures with students. Basically, the spoiled vs. the unspoiled. Raising my twins, they had to earn what want they desired; and even then they may get a second hand item. For instance, they both wanted bikes. To make sure they learned how to care for the bike, they received not a 'new' one but one from a thrift shop or salvation army. I would rarely say a flat out NO to their requests, but rather not now, we'll see. They learned how to save their allowance to get something they 'just had to have' vs. depending on Mom getting it. Raising children today is rewarding but more challenging then my time or…

Feb 03, 2022
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I love the comment about “life will not always be about them”. I instilled the same in my son and taught him how to give back. exposing him to charity work at a young age so he could see not everyone was as fortunate. Our family tradition of giving to Toys For Tots still remains today. Great insights and am loving the engagement.

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