One of the most difficult issues to deal with in raising kids
is when they get the "poor me" feeling. It comes mighty
natural to them. Everyone else has more than them, and
everyone has an easier time than them.
My sixteen year old gave me a classic example of this when
he was 7. I was pregnant with number 4 and Tyler had been
the baby for 7 years. He was having a bad day and he said,
"You're mean to me, Daddy's mean to me, Joel and Billy are
mean to me (his two older brothers), Opa and Oma and Papa
and Mama are mean to me (the grandparents), even that
baby in your tummy is mean to me!"
Dealing with this is not easy. It takes time and lots of love
and talking. The bottom line is that the child must be
brought to a point where they understand that everything
they receive is priviledge. Nothing is due them. God does
not owe them; life does not owe them. True thankfulness
has to enter into their frame of reference for them to come
to a point where they do not feel that the rest of the world
has one over on them.
When my children have grateful hearts (and when I, big gulp)
have a grateful heart, life is so much less of a burden, and
so much more an adventure we share together.