Preventing Spoiled Children: How to Manage Excessively Indulgent Grandparents


Tips for Every Parent Who Wants to Avoid Raising Spoiled Children

spoiled children

Parents want the best for their children. They sacrifice their time, money, and freedom to give their kids a good life. But as a parent, your responsibility goes beyond providing for your child’s material needs. You must also teach and show them the skills and qualities they need to independently survive in the real world. Raising a child to be spoiled is the opposite of this.


Spoiled children may be cute when they’re little, but when they grow up, they will turn into problematic adults—grownups who will cause their loved ones and the people around them much grief and trouble.


When children are spoiled, they get used to getting what they want without working for it. They expect to be indulged all the time, and they take no responsibility for their behavior when things don’t go their way. As a parent, this kind of behavior should not be tolerated. But even when you do everything to avoid this, there can be other factors, or rather, other people, who can undo all your hard work. Sometimes, it’s other people, but what do you do if it’s your child’s grandparents. So how do your deal with this?


Read these tips to learn how to manage overindulgent grandparents.


Talk with Them


Raising a child is no easy task. Most parents, no matter how experienced, will admit that they need some help from time to time. And who best to ask for help than your very own parents or in-laws? After all, your parents have raised their own kids.  But no matter how much you love them, there are matters that you don’t agree on.


As a parent, you will have your own childrearing style, your own rules, and your unique relationship with your child—no matter how much you’re like your mother or father. These differences between you and your child’s grandparents can be a point of contention, especially when they deal with your child. That’s why you should communicate with them openly.


Talk about how you discipline your child, how you want to be as a parent, and your expectations of them—your child’s grandparents. And listen to them when they impart their own advice or when they explain.  Open communication will avoid unnecessary misunderstandings and hurt feelings.


Let Them Be Grandparents


Let your parents and in-laws indulge your child occasionally. This may seem like contradictory to your goal to avoid raising spoiled children but take a moment to be in your parents’ or in-laws’ shoes. They only want to see their grandkid happy. There’s nothing wrong with that. However, you should moderate these instances.


If your child’s grandparents keep on indulging your child (e.g., buying them too many toys, giving them sweets before their meal, etc.), talk with them. Tell them how this is affecting your child’s behavior and your role as a parent. Communicate your feelings about children who are spoiled and how you don’t want that to happen to your own. Your child’s grandparents can contribute through different ways, like helping with shopping for school things or going on educational outings.


Be Firm but Compassionate


Like yourself, your parents or in-laws also want what best for your kid though sometimes they may forget what that is. When they do, you must be the one to remind them. Be firm but compassionate. Don’t tell them off, especially in front of your child. Always try to understand their side.


Oftentimes, parents and grandparents butt heads when it comes to discipline. You must be clear about your stand on discipline. Discuss with them the rules that you’ve established with your child. Ask them to establish the same rules with your kid, outside your home and in their own.


Final Thoughts


Spoiled children don’t make responsible and well-adjusted adults. That’s why it’s best to curb unpleasant behaviors while they’re young. You don’t have to do this alone. With the help of your parents, in-laws, and those who care for your child, you can raise your child to have what they need to be happy, successful, and good adults.



What are your experiences with managing overindulgent grandparents? Share them with on the comments section. You can also reach me on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads. While you’re at it, check out my books, Born to Create, As Life Goes On, and Underground Stories.




Lim, Rachel. n.d. “How to Deal with Grandparents Who Spoil Kids.” Accessed January 31, 2018.

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by Rosalie H. Contino, PhD