Is ds acting a bit spoilt?

(39 Posts)
idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 10:23:52

I'm sure I'm not bu for saying no. I know this is trivial.

He's only 4 and he wants to go on holiday, he keeps asking all the time when we can book one. Of course I'd love to just jump on a plane somewhere nice and sunny, but I'm a single parent so don't have endless supplies of money, my job is a bit iffy right now, and I need to get a few house things sorted before dipping into my money.

As I say he's only 4 and we've so far been on 3 uk mini breaks and 2 holidays abroad. Last year we went on a seaside holiday for my sisters wedding and when he realised we were driving and not going to the airport he had a mini tantrum but soon after he did say it was the best holiday ever.

He just keep asking when we can go on and aeroplane on that holiday like we did before. I've explained that holidays cost lots and lots of money and that I've got to buy x and x, and that after that maybe we can go, but it won't be for a long time until after his birhday at least and maybe even after my birthday. I said that if we can't go we can still go to the beach and have some days out. But then he just goes and gets his money box and says he'll pay, so I explain it's not enough money and not the right type as we need the money that comes off mummys card. So he pulls a grumpy face then asks all over again the next day.

I don't know if he's being spoilt, he is a nice little boy, or if I'm not explaining properly. I actually end up feeling bad that I can't but I didn't go on any holidays at all as a child, not even in the UK so I hardly think he's that hard done by.

Before I get flamed I know this is trivial.

WorraLiberty Wed 30-Jan-13 10:26:43

Sounds like a normal 4yr old to me.

The TV is chocca block at the moment with holiday adverts and they don't understand the cost at that age.

There's nothing else you can do except carry on as you are...he'll learn eventually.

HazeltheMcWitch Wed 30-Jan-13 10:28:43

I don't think that anyone on the internet can tell if he's spoilt, but he does sound a little fixated! But then again, he's 4, he does not really understand yet.

Can you just tell him - we can't afford to go on a plane? Not maybe, not after XYZ, a he's perhaps not hearing them as a no, just as a later.

I tell my kids that we can't afford certain things, they are fine. I am fine and I did not get everything that I wanted!

Where is he getting this from? Does he see his dad?

DD1 often comes back from her dads with suggestions for me such as "you should buy more fruit" when the fruit bowl is stocked. I know its planted in her head by her step mum. Shes 4 too.

If hes not getting this from anywhere else then he probably just loves going on holiday. At 4 they dont really understand money so I dont think its entirely spoilt but could become so if you give in. He needs to learn that sometimes its just not possible.

sixlostmonkeys Wed 30-Jan-13 10:29:33

I think you are explaining too much.
At 4 he isn't able to grasp money/enough money. Even timescales are meaningless and he will just hear the bit that indicates it is possible to go on holiday soon.

Keep it simple.

I don't think he is acting spoilt. he is merely expressing his desire to do something he enjoys.

AGivenNickname Wed 30-Jan-13 10:30:19

Agree with Worra, I don't think it's spoilt. I think it's just the fact that obviously at his age he doesn't fully understand the concept that things cost a lot of money.

Ah bless 'im. Sounds normal to me.
Just keep explaining - it will sink in eventually.

Whoknowswhocares Wed 30-Jan-13 10:31:38

Of course he isn't being spoilt! He can't add up, and money is just a 'thing' which he can place no proper value or significance to

Just smile and nod, and repeat that you do not have enough money. If it helps, when he shows you his money and offers to pay (awww, sweet) get out the largest box etc you can find and tell him that you would need enough money to fill it up......a visual representation will possibly explain it to him and satisfy him as an answer

WilsonFrickett Wed 30-Jan-13 10:31:42

I don't think he's spoilt either. He just wants to go on holiday - who can blame him wink. But obviously he doesn't understand the concept of money/affordability/etc yet. I'd keep it brief and distract - no DS, we can't afford a holiday this week, why don't you come and help mummy do x? - and don't take it to heart.

CajaDeLaMemoria Wed 30-Jan-13 10:34:05

I don't think he'd offer his money box if he was spoilt.

He's just excited. He's probably seen a lot of tv adverts or talked to friends who have been or are going on holiday, and he isn't. Just keep telling him not yet, and he'll grow out of it.

WorraLiberty Wed 30-Jan-13 10:35:13

At that age my kids thought that if you ran out of money, you simply went to the bank and got some more.

If only grin

Backtobedlam Wed 30-Jan-13 10:37:44

Sounds like normal 4yr old, he'll learn as he gets older and understands the cost of things, just at that age things are very black and white. I also don't think they need holidays abroad so dont worry that you cant whisk him off on a plane. We've had some really lovely holidays abroad, but ds still tells me his favourite holiday was camping in the garden!

Whoknowswhocares Wed 30-Jan-13 10:38:45

I did too apparently. I called the bank 'the money shop' and whenever my parents told me we couldn't afford something I apparently told them they should buy some more there!
Oops!

valiumredhead Wed 30-Jan-13 10:40:48

Does he watch a lot of telly - the ads on there are driving me bonkers atm. If I have to explain to ds that actually a cruise is very unlikely to be like the one portrayed in the ads one more time I'll combust!!

idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 10:41:12

Thanks all.

I don't think that anyone on the internet can tell if he's spoilt, but he does sound a little fixated! But then again, he's 4, he does not really understand yet.

He gets fixated on things all the time. For example it's his grandads birthday on Friday, and he keeps asking if it's today we're bringing his present even though I've explained and counted the days for him. Trying to think of a better example but he remembers absolutely everything, like I can't believe he remembers exact details from the holiday we had when he was two. r things we've done that even I don't remember and will keep asking when we can do that again. I'm sure it's just typical, he's a good boy.

Where is he getting this from? Does he see his dad?

Doesn't see his dad and I don't think it's from school they're too little. I think he just really loved going on holiday. After my sisters wedding he kept asking for ages when she was going to have another one!

I possibly do explain a bit too much just don't like saying point blank no but I guess maybes and timescales are a bit too much for him to process.

DeWe Wed 30-Jan-13 10:43:13

He's probably just started realising that others go on holiday on planes etc. I don't think he's spoilt at all. Or maybe he just wants to go on a plane and isn't bothered where. Or he just fancies doing something different. If he's saying afterwards it was great then he's not spoilt.

For what it's worth, we've never taken the dc aboard unless you count Wales wink. We have a great time in UK, and I think all the dc would agree with that-my oldest is 12yo, and last year, for the first time we returned to the same place we'd been to the year before at the dc's request.

You could, if you want, give him the choice: A holiday every year in UK. Or one holiday every 3-4 years abroad. Point out that means no holiday for 2-3 years first.

zukiecat Wed 30-Jan-13 10:47:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

valiumredhead Wed 30-Jan-13 10:48:09

I wouldn't give a 4 year old that sort of choice. YOU choose what's best, you are the adult.

Would he enjoy camping for a couple of nights?

KC225 Wed 30-Jan-13 10:48:43

Like the others have said, sounds normal to me. Do remember that small children have no perception of time and how long things take. It may seem to us that they get fixated on things but often they are just interested in things and trying to clarify in their own head.

CailinDana Wed 30-Jan-13 10:50:29

He's just being 4 smile Best thing to do is to say "I know, I'd love to go on a holiday with you, you're such great fun, but we can't this year. Doesn't matter though we can still have fun!" and suggest some days out etc. If he carries on mentioning it just say "Oh so you don't want to ...(go on the days out)?" in a disappointed voice. Essentially make the days out that you can afford seem more attractive than the holiday.

It's totally normal for a small child to get fixated on something they really want, it's not spoilt at all, especially seeing as he was offering to pay!

Your last post sounds just like my DD1 OP.

Really crazy memory. Always asking when even though its been explained.

DD1 asks every day what day it is, what day was it yesterday, what day will it be tomorrow. She also has no concept of money and offers to pay for things. Apparently everything costs seventy pounds grin

I think its just their way of figuring out the world and how things work. Less explanation seems to work here. The more explanation I give the harder her imagination works.

idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 10:54:18

I don't think he'd offer his money box if he was spoilt.

Very true, he is very kind and helpful.

Just smile and nod, and repeat that you do not have enough money. If it helps, when he shows you his money and offers to pay (awww, sweet) get out the largest box etc you can find and tell him that you would need enough money to fill it up......a visual representation will possibly explain it to him and satisfy him as an answer

That's a really good idea, although knowing ds he will decide to fill to box with every bit of loose change he gets, he's very determined!

I did too apparently. I called the bank 'the money shop' and whenever my parents told me we couldn't afford something I apparently told them they should buy some more there!

Yep, I remember my dn doing this when he was about 8

I love UK holidays especially if we get a bit of sun, in fact I think that there's more to do but looking at prices some of them can cost nearly as much as abroad when you add in petrol/train fares. I'd love to take him camping but I don't think I'd be able to put up the tent. Dsis has invited us to go with her though in the past.

idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 11:02:02

wannabedomesticgoddess yep that exactly it, he asks every day what day it is and we have to go through all the days. I just can't believe some of the stuff he remembers, he even remembers directions to places, I got him to direct me to the supermarket the other day and he did, even got his left and right and told me where to park.

grin DD knows everywhere. Remembers places she hasnt been to since she was tiny. Knows what way to go to loads of places. I havent asked her to direct but I know she could. If we ever go off course shes instantly asking why!

Shes also obsessed with time. And she can use the tv remote and mobile phones. We havent shown her. She just does it!

WilsonFrickett Wed 30-Jan-13 11:09:22

Buy him a calendar as well, then you can write things like 'Grandad's birthday' on it and show him - today is Wednesday, then it's Thursday, then it's Grandad's birthday. Visually showing time is much easier to grasp than saying 'oh it's in three days time.' Soon enough he'll be able to count forward himself rather than asking you.

And as a bonus he'll learn his days and months!

DreamingOfTheMaldives Wed 30-Jan-13 11:13:15

I thought him going to get his moneybox and saying he would pay is adorable!

PenelopePipPop Wed 30-Jan-13 11:20:11

He doesn't sound at all spoilt, he sounds really lovely. Getting that excited about his Grandad's birthday is very sweet. But I appreciate rather tiring if you have to keep having the same conversation!

Visual aids have helped us a lot with DD who is only 2.5 and sometimes has tantrums because not every day is swimming day.
I wrote the days of the week on the door of the fridge (in permanent marker oops) and then put pictures on magnets of her activities so she can see what she is doing each day and see how many days/sleeps between now and the next swimming.

Re: camping, DH goes camping with DD by himself all the time so it must be possible. Not sure how much fun it is (he is a weirdy!). But check out the pop-up tents at Decathlon if you want one you can put up by yourself. You might need a hand taking it down mind, but hopefully by then you'll have made friends on the campsite and someone will be along to assist!

idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 11:22:33

wannabedomesticgoddess that's very sweet, yes if we go a different route ds pipes up "it's not THIS way".

WilsonFricket I do keep meaning to get him a calendar, think I'll order one it will help him to know when his birthday is etc.

dreamingofthemaldives it is very sweet, I just feel more bad telling him it's not enough.

idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 11:31:00

Thanks penelope I'm going to get him a calendar, makes sense then I can write everything on it, kept meaning to do it before.

That's lovely that you DH and DD go camping, I'm not very confident and a bit of a worrier, I might go with dsis next time she mentions it and see then if I think I'm up to it by myself, no good reason why not I suppose we'd only need a tiny tent.

The other thing he gets fixated with is chocolate, cake etc. So if I buy a tub of mini muffins for example I'll say he can have just one and one tomorrow, but because he knows they're there I don't hear the end of it. He'll keep on can he just have one more, can he have one tomorrow after breakfast, can he have one straight after school with a drink, can he just hold them to look after them. Honestly you'd think he was starved sometimes.

BarbarianMum Wed 30-Jan-13 11:39:27

4 years old = no sense of time and no idea about money in my book. He's behaving entirely appropriately. And yes, it is annoying.

My ds1, for years, thought that when daddy went to work it was literally to make money. Boy was he ever disappointed when we visited him at the office and there was no money, ink or machinery just boring bits of paper. smile

PenelopePipPop Wed 30-Jan-13 11:42:23

Ha we have the chocolate muffin problem with sodding Peppa Pig strawberry fromage frais. On the bright side I reckon her number skills are awesome for two because of all the complex negotiations about how many she can have today, tomorrow and the day after before they run out and I refuse to buy any more. And yeah we get 'I'm just holding them'.

Small people = baffling.

ByTheWay1 Wed 30-Jan-13 11:44:43

He sounds lovely not spoilt.

Probably just loved going on am aeroplane - it is "special" isn't it - I always get excited about going on a plane and I'm nearly 50.....

delboysfileofax Wed 30-Jan-13 11:54:57

Is he just really really into planes/flying? If so a couple of options. You could take him to the airport to the viewing gallery so he could watch them taking off? When you get home make him a cockpit (cardboard box etc) and play a game of pilots.

If you live near an airport send an email to an airline- ask them if your boy can have a look around one of their planes on the ground. They did this for me in the past. If you dont ask, you dont get!

idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 11:56:55

Ah, they do take things absolutely literally don't they.

Yes, negotiating things, but if I do this I can have one more. Even tells me I can have one too.

Yes going on a plane is great, I didn't go until I was 13 but even moreso at 4, ah well when my lottery numbers come up...

idlovetogo Wed 30-Jan-13 11:59:37

delboys I think it's a bit of everything, he made a friend last time and he sometimes thinks his friend will still be there. That was nice of them to do that, I'm sure he'd love that.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Wed 30-Jan-13 12:03:20

He sounds just like my DS1.

We went to Italy last summer for a wedding, it was his first time on a plane and he loved it.

We went away again in October, just a long weekend in the UK, to a really lovely hotel with loads for the kids to do, nice food etc.
As we tucked him into bed on the first night, he said 'mummy I like it here, but I do think I prefer Italy'. I was like this shock grin

delboysfileofax Wed 30-Jan-13 12:04:36

my teacher managed to sort me out going to an RAF base when I was little and i got to sit in a tornado! (was so excited i cried!) Send an email find out what people can do. You'd be surprised how many will help!

Branleuse Wed 30-Jan-13 12:07:35

not spoilt. normal.
if my kids go on about something like holidays i get excited about fantasy holidays with them and we plan on what we Will do one day. ill tell them it takes lots and lots of money.

choccyp1g Wed 30-Jan-13 12:14:29

If you are near SW London, the Brooklands museum is great for transport obsessions..they have classic cars, old aeroplanes, a concorde that you can sit in etc.

When DS was little we went a lot, and sometimes they had special days with classic car rallies at no extra cost.

You do have to pay extra for the concorde experience though.

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