Recently, my 7-year-old daughter traveled to North Carolina to see other family members for 5 days. They had fun, but some of my other young cousins and relatives are more worldly and more 'mature' than my kid. Their parents give them many things which I think are inappropriate, costly, and unnecessary at such young ages to keep them busy.
When she returned, my aunt said to me, "Why don't you buy your kid a laptop or iPad or cell phone? All the other kids had something; she was the only one who didn't." Then, this aunt turned to another aunt and said, "I know why. It's because she is c-h-e-a-p."
My family members are pretty vocal and don't really understand boundaries. Although I was the niece, I was not afraid to respond, "No, it's not that I'm cheap at all. First, I would prefer you have this conversation with me alone, not in front of my kid. Secondly, most of the world is going to hell in a hand-basket, too, but I don't want that to be a reason for my kid to follow them, either."
When we were driving back home, I asked my daughter if she heard what Auntie said and what she thought of the conversation. To my utter surprise, pride and gratitude, she said, "No, I wasn't upset that I didn't have the laptop or iPad. I guess it just means that I don't need that right now. I'm too young."
I almost cried. I told my daughter how proud of her I was that she was not coveting, jealous, angry, or sad because she did not have certain 'things.' I continued to explain to her that she will get certain things as she grows, but as a kid, it's not good for her to have everything, too soon. Even as an adult, she won't get everything she wants or thinks she should have. I explained other principles about gratitude, sharing, working, saving, needs, wants, etc. as I always do. I even explained to her that many times, parents give children too many things because the parents feel guilty for not having good relationships with their kids. Again, my kid made me smile when she said, "But we have a relationship, right, Mommy?"
I told my kid how proud I was because her response shows that she is learning, thinking, and applying the lessons and discussions we constantly have. I am trying to raise her to be a functional, responsible, adult woman, married to a man, and actually raise her own children. Unlike all my aunts and uncles, who are divorced, some have been married more than once, and are mostly driven by the feminist manifesto. My kid, thankfully and purposefully, is being raised by a married mom and dad, and an educated mom who is well aware of the costs of feminism.
PS. I teach as an adjunct faculty member and I have a Master's Degree, so I am fully aware of the dangers and bill-of-goods of the feminist doctrine. This is why I stick out from my family - whom I love dearly.