We have all seen that one kid in the grocery store who falls to the floor screaming because their mother won't get them something. I always feel so bad for the mother when I see something like this because I know that would be super embarrassing. Many times when children pull this stunt the mother will give in just to save herself the embarrassment, but all that is really doing is setting yourself up for failure the next time around.
Children act like this because they are spoiled. They usually have parents who will give into everything they want.
As parents, we do want to make sure our children are happy, but that doesn't mean we need to spoil them beyond belief. When a baby is born we do need to make sure that we tend to their needs. There is a difference between loving and caring for them and spoiling them. Once a baby reaches about six months old they start to become more independent. Of course, we still need to take care of them, but we shouldn't coddle them every minute of the day. There are many ways we can love our baby without spoiling them too much.
Here are 15 things that may lead to a baby becoming spoiled. If you're doing one of these, chances are, you're probably spoiling your baby.
15 Neglecting Baby's Schedule
Just about all of the parenting books tell you how important it is to stick to a schedule. There is a reason for this. When you don’t try to get your baby on a set schedule you allow the baby to run the show. Starting a schedule won’t happen overnight, but slowly the baby will get the idea that certain things happen around certain times. By all means, if your baby is hungry go ahead and feed them. You wouldn’t want to let a hungry baby go hungry just because the schedule says it should be another twenty minutes.
Schedules are best for sleep times. It’s best to get the baby on a sleeping schedule right away. The sooner your baby starts working on a sleep schedule, the sooner you will be able to get some sleep yourself. Babies that fall asleep at the same time each night tend to start sleeping through the night quicker. Most babies will still wake up for feedings because of their tiny stomachs, but as they get a few months older this will diminish.
14 Never Letting Baby Self-Soothe
If you don’t let the baby ever learn how to self soothe you will run into some trouble down the line. It may seem like the easier solution to always soothe them, but as the baby becomes dependent on this, it will be nearly impossible to break the habit. If the baby is dependent on you soothing them to sleep, it will be extremely difficult for them to fall asleep on their own.
You can say bye-bye to having a babysitter for that long awaited date night with your partner because no one else will be able to comfort your baby. Your baby will be so dependent on you for their comfort that they will not want anyone else. When it’s getting time for the baby to go to sleep, put them down when they are drowsy, but awake. This will help them to start learning how to fall asleep on their own.
13 Letting Baby Cluster Feed
Cluster feeding is natural when the baby is first born, this helps bring in the milk. Some babies will want to nurse nonstop even after the milk is in, this is where you will need to draw a line. If you have been feeding your baby for hours, chances are, they are now cluster feeding for comfort.
If your baby has been having wet and dirty diapers and they are growing, they are most likely getting all of the milk that they need. If you do not break this habit early, they will continue to do this and it will be time consuming. You will start to feel like all that you do all day long, is nurse your baby. Break the habit now; you will be thankful for it later.
12 Relying On Baby Carriers
This subject has been on debate for a few years now. Some mothers believe baby carrying will cause the baby to be spoiled and other mothers don’t believe that it does. In my opinion, I believe that if you excessively use a baby carrier your baby will become dependent on it, just like they would become dependent on mom holding them all day.
I do think they are great and moms should use them. They can help you get a lot things done that you normally wouldn’t have been able to do without it, but you shouldn’t be using it all day, everyday. Moms may become dependent on the carriers also, so use with caution. Another thing moms have noticed is that their baby has a harder time with anyone else holding them. The baby ends up only wanting mom.
11 Opting For Co-Sleeping
Co-sleeping is definitely going to lead the baby to being spoiled if it continues for too long. Babies will love the feeling of sleeping with mom every night. This is the ultimate security blanket for them. They will be comforted by the warmth, smell, and even the sound of your breathing. Babies will become dependent on sleeping with mom, dad, or both.
This is one of the hardest habits to break and it may continue for many more years than you anticipated. Before you know it, you will have a full grown kindergartner in your bed, taking up more room than you do! Even when you get them out of your bed, you will find yourself waking up in the middle of the night and guess what? Surprise, they are back. Save yourself the trouble and skip the co-sleeping all together.
10 Responding To Every Little Cry
Many mothers will go running the second they hear their baby crying, especially first time mothers. When you hear your baby crying, wait a few seconds to see if they calm down. If they don’t, then go check on your baby and see what’s going on. When babies are first born they cry when they need something, but as they get older they may start to cry for any little thing.
If you respond to every little cry, your baby will start to realize that. Your baby will start to cry for anything and everything because they know you will come running. Don’t take this the wrong way. If your baby is crying for something that does need attention, by all means, attend to it. If your crying baby has a dry diaper, full belly, and seems to be fine, then chances are, they are okay.
9 Rocking Baby To Sleep
Just about everyone rocks their baby at some point. I have rocked all of my children countless times when they were babies. It feels natural to rock a baby and they do seem to love it. There’s no harm in rocking a baby, but if you're rocking your baby to get them to sleep, then you may run into some issues. Your baby may become spoiled with all of the rocking and they will crave it more and more.
Babies can’t be spoiled when they are newborns, so rock away. When babies reach about six months old they can start to learn things that will lead them to being spoiled and this is one of them. Try to turn it down a notch with the rocking when the baby is getting closer to being six months of age to avoid dependency.
8 Driving Baby Around To Fall Asleep
There’s just something about driving around in a car that is soothing to a baby. It could be from the moving motion, a different view, or even the sound of a vehicle that causes them to be calm and eventually puts them to sleep. This is definitely something that will lead to spoiling your baby. Some parents will leave in the middle of the night to drive their baby around to get them to sleep.
This is not something you would want your baby getting accustomed to. It’s time consuming and it will cost you lots of money in gas. I have tried this in the past and yes it does work, but I came to the conclusion that I didn’t want my baby to have me driving them around at all hours of the night. I also realized that once you get home and take the baby out of the car seat they might just wake right back up and you're back at square one.
7 Holding The Baby All The Time
They say you can’t spoil a newborn, which is true, but once they start to get a little bit bigger the spoiling begins. It happens fast, so be sure to break your habit before it’s impossible to break their habit. Holding a newborn is not going to spoil them, it’s actually good for them. It gives them a sense of comfort and security. The first few months will fly by, so get your holding time in then.
After the first few months try not to spend too much time holding them or you won’t have free arms again for the next few years. Babies that are held too much will not want to be put down. When a baby is held all of the time, they will start crying instantly the second you put them down. You will find it impossible to get anything done because all day long you will have a baby permanently attached to your arms. Save yourself the trouble now and give the baby some down time.
6 Overfeeding The Baby
When a baby cries, it doesn’t always mean the baby is hungry. Some mothers will try to feed their baby every time they cry. Feeding your baby with every single cry can lead to overfeeding your baby. Overfeeding the baby can lead to so many problems down the road. Your baby might get used to overfeeding and require more at each feeding.
They may seem like they need baby food earlier when this becomes an issue, but you still shouldn’t start on baby food until the doctor gives you the okay. You may be wondering how overfeeding fits into spoiling a baby. When the baby gets older and starts having snacks such as Cheerios, they will want more and more. They will be used to you feeding them so much at that point that they know you will give it to them and if you don’t, get ready for the waterworks.
5 Sacrificing Baby's Alone Time
Every mom needs alone time, even if it’s just to shower quick. If you’re holding your baby all of the time and never give them alone time, it will be hard for them to spend even one minute without you. Don’t be afraid to use their baby swing once in awhile. You can also utilize their bouncy chair or have them take their nap in their crib. When they’re taking a nap make sure you’re either taking a nap, if you need one, or spend some time doing things you don’t always have time for.
If you have a good support system, lean on them sometimes. Make sure you're taking care of yourself and getting your alone time in. Get help with the baby when you need it, you can use this time to shower, pamper yourself, or to even run to the grocery store. While you're out, take the time to even stop at your nearest Starbucks and treat yourself to a coffee.
4 Relying On Pacifiers
Many parents weigh out the pros and cons of using a pacifier before deciding to use one. The American Academy of Pediatrics actually recommends using a pacifier after the baby reaches one month. Using a pacifier at night helps to reduce the chance of SIDS. This does not mean you should give your baby a pacifier with every peep that they make.
A baby needs to learn how to self soothe eventually and if they are always using a pacifier they will rely on the pacifier to help soothe them. Using a pacifier after their teeth come in is also not the best idea, their teeth can grow in abnormally. It will be hard to break your baby’s habit once they have become attached to their pacifier, but giving in, will only cause more problems later.
3 Not Getting Family Members Involved
When a baby is born some parents will be so overprotective that they don’t want to let other family members help care for the baby. If your mother raised you just fine, then it’s probably safe to say, she will be okay helping you out with the baby. You will become overwhelmed without any help.
Once the baby gets older they will be overly attached to their parents and it will create a whole new world of issues. It will be hard for them to adjust when it’s time to start daycare or preschool. Your baby will be so used to being with only you that they will not be able to handle it when it’s time to be away from mommy and daddy. Save yourself the trouble now, and let your family help out from time to time.
2 Always Giving In
This is one of the most important things to follow when trying to raise a baby that you don’t want to grow up being spoiled. As parents, it is sometimes the easier option to just give in to our child’s every want and need, but we’re doing more harm than good. If you jump through hoops every time your baby cries to help calm them, they will most likely become spoiled.
They will start to learn that you will come running for every little thing that they want, even if it’s not something important. As they get older it will be even harder to break this habit and before you know it, you will have your toddler screaming on the floor of the grocery store. If you don’t want to become that embarrassed mom that we all see at the grocery store, don’t make a big fuss over every little cry.
1 Not Sticking To Your Plan
Setting up a schedule with your baby may feel like a worthless task in the beginning. It’s not going to happen overnight and it may seem like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel. Eventually your baby will get the hint that bed time is around a certain time and the same goes for nap time.
If you keep at it and don’t give up, you will reap the benefits later. Your life will start to seem a lot easier before you know it. As your baby gets older and becomes a toddler they will also start to learn that not everything goes their way. Don’t be so quick to throw in the towel, keep trying and you will succeed. You can do it, after all, you were capable of creating a beautiful baby. Anything is possible.
Sources: parenting.com, babycenter.com, whattoexpect.com, colgate.com,