At the end of last month, one set of parents created a big buzz because they explained in a blog that they were not going to give their children Christmas presents this year, and why. The original article is attached.
According to Lisa from "Over the Big Moon," after trying many different methods of modifying their kids' behavior, she and her husband grew tired of fighting the children's sense of entitlement and ungratefulness, which came with a dose of disrespectful behavior. They decided to "cancel" the present part of Christmas and instead spend that money on service projects and gifts for others. The family is still celebrating Christmas, decorations and all. And the kids will still be able to open presents from people other than their parents. But the parents won't be buying them any presents this year.
Here's one of the service projects they did:
"The first project we did this season was to hold a clothing driving in our neighborhood. We gathered gently used clothing, sorted them, and packaged them up to send to a village in Northern Cebu of the Philippines. The village was hit hard by Typhoon Haiyan last year. Then the kids wrote letters and found hard candy from their Halloween stash that we could ship to the kids in the village. It was awesome! Instead of being sad over giving up their Halloween candy they were excited and kept wanting to give more and more. After we had the boxes all packaged up we mailed them. The kids loved it! It was a lot of money to ship and they understand that they gave up having something, so they could give these clothes to others."
The story made a big splash in the media. They even got invited to talk shows! As Lisa pointed out after many harassing, extreme comments to her story. her children are not suffering or deprived. They have more possessions than they know what to do with. Also, the kids have responded positively, even making presents for each other.
What do you think about this couple's course of action? Is it too extreme? Would you be willing to go one Christmas without giving your children presents in order to teach them a lesson on entitlement, gratefulness and the rewards of giving to others?