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How to stop my DD from being a spoiled, selfish shopaholic?

My DD is turning 14. I am a single mom, currently unemployed. I get assistance to pay bills and buy groceries. She told me her friend's mom gave the friend and another girl $100 to go shopping with on the friend's b'day, why can't I? Almost every day, she's talking up how much she WANTS stuff, big expensive crud. We always fight. I tell her, consider my situation and think about every sacrifice those around her make just to give her what she already has. Today she said, "Well I'm only going to be 14. You can't expect me to know those things!" But she DOES, she's just spoiled. I give her love, comfort, approval. This ONE issue is really difficult. I could REALLY use some advice!!!


Asked by Anonymous at 4:20 PM on Oct. 18, 2008 in Teens (13-17)

This question is closed.
Answers (11)
  • She needs to know the value of work, time, and money. She might also do well to give back a little. If you feel she is not yet ready for a job, maybe the animal shelter or helping younger kids with homework after school are more age appropriate. Volunteer work will give her a taste of the real word and help her to feel needed and helpful. At the very least have her help out more at home, let her know what it takes to keep that place in order. It sounds like she might also benefit from a closer look at those less fortunate then her, with Christmas coming up this would be a great time for her to take some of her old cloths and things to children in state homes or send gifts of basic everyday products to children over seas. She will see one day that she had the best of life all along, she will see she was lucky.

    Good Luck



    Answer by Cris1128 at 11:19 PM on Oct. 19, 2008

  • Ugh. I had six younger siblings when I was a teen and going through what your daughter is going through now. My parents could not afford to buy me anything.

    My mother said that if I worked I could keep every dime I earn and spend it any way I would like. So I did. I worked from the age 12 and on. I worked on farms, I babysat, I worked as a hostess at a pizza place, then was promoted to waitress when I turned 16. I even did chores for the elderly.

    I was making lots of money as a teenager and there are so many opportunities out there. It taught me responsibility, the actual cost of a dollar, and I could buy what I wanted. It all started with my mom talking up working and getting what I wanted.

    Answer by girlneffy at 4:41 PM on Oct. 18, 2008

  • I agree with the post above you should tell her if she wants something she's got to work for it if she doesnt then she wont be getting all the extra stuff she wants. Tell her you wish you could buy her all that stuff but you cant.

    Answer by SammiTaylorTM at 4:46 PM on Oct. 18, 2008

  • Even if you HAD the money to throw around it doesn't mean she should get all the stuff she asks for. Tell her to get a job. Once she starts working she'll quit asking and learn to appreciate more what it takes to get the stuff she wants.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:07 PM on Oct. 18, 2008

  • Tell her to get a job!

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:08 PM on Oct. 18, 2008

  • She says she doesn't understand.
    Cut up some paper into pretend money. Make enough of it for what you bring in. Then make other slips for your bills, other expenses, and optional things (like buying clothes and toys). Ask her to divide the money up amoung the slips. Make sure she knows what happens if some of the bills aren't paid - no lights, no water, no heat, no phone. Ask her what you can drop so she can have more "stuff". Help her see the problem.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 7:47 PM on Oct. 18, 2008

  • More from the Writer: DD & I have WONDERFUL relationship- get along wonderfully; she is responsible with chores & school. Doesn't get into trouble, keeps grades, volunteers, cheerleader, etc. She's really good and gentle and generous.
    I HAVE told her to save $$. Her g'ma gives small allowance every week. When she really wants something, she'll save. But if "too expensive" (over $40 or so), that takes too long for her. I HAVE let her do jobs like babysitting. But lately all I hear is "I want THIS huge expensive piece when I already have a decent working thing at home". I'm in tears from not finding a job, I'm not on welfare, and I want to earn my own keep. SHE KNOWS ALL THIS! So why do I have to yell at her to get her to be thankful that we're alive and together and in a safe place; when all she wants is moneystuff?! I don't understand why she's so materialistic and needy. None of us were raised this way.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:02 PM on Oct. 18, 2008

  • I really think kids at that age don't really understand finances and the difference between those that seem to have and those that don't. Many who seem to have more are just more in debt. This is a good time to start teaching her about money. Take her grocery shopping and let her see the cost of things. How she can get bread and peanut butter for the same cost as one mcdonalds meal. Teach her instead of just being frustrated with her wants. Those are normal for teenagers.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:07 AM on Oct. 19, 2008

  • Honestly, I was a brat when I was younger too. I wanted everything I saw && even though, we weren't so well off, my mom usually got it for me. The desire to be rich, I think, is felt by everyone. Life would be so wonderful if we all afford to even just get by. I know I dream of the day when I don't have to be on government assistance && I can own a house with a backyard for my son to play in. Until I grew up && had a kid myself && moved out, I did not understand how difficult it is to manage money && how demanding bills are. So, it will just come with time.

    Answer by Blueberryplz at 7:25 AM on Oct. 19, 2008

  • Is there some type of homeless shelter or something near where you live? Maybe a soup kitchen? I think it would be a really humbling experience for her to go volunteer at something of that sort for a few days. She would see other kids her age who were just so thankful for a hot meal and a roof over their head. She'll get it eventually... I think it's just part of being a teenager.

    Answer by heather.huckaby at 1:02 PM on Oct. 19, 2008