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To wonder why we bother encouraging our children to share when......

(45 Posts)
malificent7 Mon 07-Nov-16 18:44:13

Most people seem to be quite fisted and lack generosity? Judging by all the benefit bashers and snobbery in the world it appears that the default condition for the human race is miserliness rather than generosity.

I know that I vastly over generalise but it really does seem that most people are obsessed with money to the extent where they begrudge paying any taxes towards public services and are very quick to brand the poor as lazy scroungers.

I went to a very posh private school and everyone was obsessed with cash there too. Your social standing very much depended on the designer labels you were warning and the car that picked you up from school. Apparently the kids would throw coins at the local people from the state comp as a snub.

Today, the phrase 'hardworking families' is bandied about in a way that suggests that why should hard working families pay for the poor.

I am relatively poor as a skint single mum but I work full time (35 hours). My wage is low and I keep trying for higher earning jobs but with no luck.
I don't mind having tax deducted as I want good public services and a safety net for those in needs. So I guess I am a hardworking family but only because I am lucky enough to have an excellent support network, an expensive education, a bit of self confidence and a great childminder. Thousands don't have these advantages.

The word 'feckless ' is bandied about a lot too. I could have been described as feckless in the past for having a child outside of marriage and no steady career. In reality I was suffering from ptsd.

Don't get me wrong, I am all for people working if they can but the government are really tightening the thumb screws on the poor as I am finding out and it seems that many are celebrating this.

I guess in uncertain times people want to grasp onto their cash more than ever.

I'm sorry to all you lovely generous sharing people out there and fwiw I do believe we should encourage our children to share...I just wanted an attention grabbing title!

The80sweregreat Mon 07-Nov-16 19:05:02

Money is the root of all evil. Its sad but its always been the same. There isnt much you can do, but like you, i hate the 'im alright jack' mentality.

Yes, some are feckless, but not everyone and nobody knows what is round the corner either. People forget this!

Rollonbedtime7pm Mon 07-Nov-16 19:24:32

Because you don't want them to turn into those selfish people that you despise! grin

EveOnline2016 Mon 07-Nov-16 19:25:52

I don't teach my children to share personal items.

However I have toys and other stuff which don't belong to anyone specific in the house in which friend and my nieces and nephews can play with.

The rule is if you don't want anyone playing with an item don't bring it down.

They both understand in public places like the park or soft play that the items are shared ditto for school.

I don't go sharing my car or my house with everyone so I don't see why my DC have to share things that are precious to them.

Batteriesallgone Mon 07-Nov-16 19:39:00

Ooh I had coins thrown at me by the poshos <waves>

It's difficult because where do you draw the line between this is mine and this I will share? Especially with something like income. And sharing amongst children tends to mean reciprocal - you share yours I'll share mine - but many people feel they work their whole lives and give, whereas others don't and take.

I dont know. It's too hard. I used to volunteer getting homeless and people who were 'long term unemployed' back into work. By providing interview practice, CV help, such like. Yes I met a couple of feckless people but by and large they were keen but for some reason had been previously overlooked. Once they had an middle class accountant advocating for them they got jobs no problem confused

I refuse to believe I'm gods gift to interview skills so presumably it was just unconscious prejudice - oh you're long term homeless? Fuck off. Vs oh you're long term homeless but appear to be the project of someone who looks like my daughter? Hey come on in I'll give you a whirl.

There's an awful lot of shit in the world. I came from an awful background but pass superbly as middle class - I am well aware of how awful people can be to those they don't deem worthy.

Batteriesallgone Mon 07-Nov-16 19:40:00

Sorry that was a rant. I've had a bottle of wine blush I should probably stop postibg

Bluebolt Mon 07-Nov-16 19:58:34

There is a difference between sharing and giving. I teach my children to share toys but they retain ownership until they no longer wanted them and I teach turn taking. Them being charitable is a different life lesson.

Believeitornot Mon 07-Nov-16 20:01:00

I don't teach my children to share either. It's some sort of blanket excuse for "hand over that toy so he doesn't scream his head of".

I encourage taking turns and letting someone have a go - if the child in question wants to.

If someone came along and said "let me share your phone" I'd be shock hmm so why expect that of my children. But if someone said, can I borrow your phone, then I'd probably be fine with it. Depends if they were a random etcetc. That is what I encourage in my dcs.

Also to help each other and show kindness.

mammybops Mon 07-Nov-16 20:05:08

op to answer your question a more famous person than I did that a while ago "Be the change you want to see in the world" (or words to that effect).

We teach our children to share but not be doormats so they have the compassion to treat others well without being taken advantage of. We show our children the way the world should be.

I'm not responsible for the selfishness of others, but I can send two more kind-hearted people into the world.

bumsexatthebingo Mon 07-Nov-16 20:21:01

Because kids will be really unpopular i they just keep stuff to themselves and never let friends have a go. And while I wouldn't expect to have a 'go' on a randoms phone if I asked my friend if I could make a quick call because my battery had died I'd be a bit hmm if they said 'no it's miiiiiiiiiiine!'.
I agree that sharing shouldn't mean give your stuff to anyone who asks before you've even had a chance to use it though.

HarryPottersMagicWand Mon 07-Nov-16 21:03:29

I don't automatically teach my children to share either. I had a friend over before and everything my DD picked up, hers wanted. My DD would give in and hand it over and get something else only for visiting child to want this too. Every single time the mum said "share 'grabby child' 5 minutes and you can have it". Uh no, thats not sharing, that's you teaching your child they can demand anything that someone else has.

I tell my DCs to put something precious away (they don't actually do this now they are older and don't mind their friends playing with any of their stuff) and I don't encourage them to share their food either. I don't get why people share food. If I'm hungry, I eat, I don't want to give it up or I'll still be hungry and the same goes for my DCs.

I wouldn't hand over my car/tablet/money because someone demanded they be allowed a turn and to share my stuff and I think the same should apply to children too. I had my nephew here a while ago and he kept going for DDs expensive and slightly delicate toy and he is a very boisterous 2 year old that literally throws everything he grabs around the room. I told him (nicely) that he wasn't to touch it but my brother just said "ah, he's ok to share that" um no he's not and that cost £60 and when he throws or drops it on my wooden floors it is going to break.

Sharing communal stuff that don't actually own is different obviously.

JerryFerry Mon 07-Nov-16 21:08:08

Actually humans are hard wired to be generous, helpful and non judgmental. The toxicity you describe is taught, not innate.

user1472419718 Mon 07-Nov-16 21:08:58

I think there is a big difference between sharing what is yours and what is not yours.

If your child goes to nursery, the toys are for everyone and they need to learn to take turns and share. Important for them to learn this as in life we will always need to work with others and compromise.

But a toy that belongs to them should be their choice when they share and who they share it with.

user1472419718 Mon 07-Nov-16 21:09:20

I think there is a big difference between sharing what is yours and what is not yours.

If your child goes to nursery, the toys are for everyone and they need to learn to take turns and share. Important for them to learn this as in life we will always need to work with others and compromise.

But a toy that belongs to them should be their choice when they share and who they share it with.

user1472419718 Mon 07-Nov-16 21:09:50

I think there is a big difference between sharing what is yours and what is not yours.

If your child goes to nursery, the toys are for everyone and they need to learn to take turns and share. Important for them to learn this as in life we will always need to work with others and compromise.

But a toy that belongs to them should be their choice when they share and who they share it with.

Lovefromhull Mon 07-Nov-16 21:12:11

I don't teach my kids to share either. I would let someone use my phone for example, but I'd not want them to be playing with it. Why should kids be different.
But- the theme of your post- about selfishness- yes I agree. It's the Tory " each man for himself" mentality. Very sad.
However- tonight we drove home past some " guerrilla gardening"and my daughter pointed out that some people care, and realised that some will give their time and energy for the benefit of all. Nice.

Oblomov16 Mon 07-Nov-16 21:25:36

People are often inherently selfish. To varying degrees. And driven by money. Or at least the desire to be comfortable and not struggling. Not all, but most are this, so why deny it?

malificent7 Mon 07-Nov-16 21:35:32

I agree that most people would rather not struggle and be comfortable but why begrudge others for trying to escape poverty too? Why can't everyone help raise standards of living rather than see someone else gaining as taking from them?

PotatoCakeMixes Mon 07-Nov-16 21:41:43

You're ace batteries

maninawomansworld01 Tue 08-Nov-16 00:21:46

Actually humans are hard wired to be generous, helpful and non judgmental. The toxicity you describe is taught, not innate.

You've got that the wrong way round actually. There have been a number of studies done on chimps which quite conclusively prove that they are inherently selfish and don't give a shit about others when they are young. The troop teaches them that they have to work together and find a position within their society in order to survive.

We have a tax system where there are 2 kinds of people - givers who pay more in tax than they take out and takers who are a financial drain.

Unfortunately the system has got to the point where there are too many takers and in these times where most people are feeling the squeeze the givers are really starting to resent it. Most working families do not consider themselves particularly comfortable even though they earn reasonable money yet the biggest monthly expense is the tax bill.

I know plenty of people who bust their arses working really hard and don't earn £23k yet they manage.
Benefits (and I specifically exclude vulnerable people here) should be a last resort safety net while you work yourself out of whatever situation has led you to claim, you are not supposed to be comfortable on them or where is the incentive to get back to work and support yourself?

I'm not bashing the benfic claimants, just the system that creates a culture of dependency. We can't afford it as a country.

JerryFerry Tue 08-Nov-16 02:49:07

Manila I was talking about humans, not chimps. And yes it's evidence based

Mummyoflittledragon Tue 08-Nov-16 04:04:08

Sharing is a very difficult principle in our society I think. A lot is made of it in the media. I think if the media were kinder to others, we would be kinder to each other. As it is, the media spoon feeds us stories berating others both from within and outside our society. And we do like to knock people when they're down and although the tide is changing a bit, until recently, the media also liked to knock people when they got too much success as well. Examples in the media of 'benefits scum', of 'Europe taking all our money', of 'immigrants taking all our jobs' make good headlines and make us as a society less able to share. I lived in Belgium and taxes were higher there than here. People talked of everyone having a more even standard of living. Of course there was a wide gap between the haves and have nots but the have nots I was told they had a far better safety net. I would like more of this sort of model in our country. We seem to be half way between that sort of system and the system in the US.

I am teaching my dd to be kind to others, to share, to console the neighbour, whose wife recently died even though she was unpleasant with us and her husband stood there and shrugged because he felt powerless. Caring and sharing are good lessons in humility. Dd wasn't very good at sharing some of her toys when she was younger as little children often aren't. Those few toys we put away.

I'm a very ill person and don't work. I've never taken disability allowances. I would have been too ill to even be able to fill in the forms in the beginning and then when I felt bit better, I realised maybe someone needs the money more so never claimed. I pay for very expensive treatments from what dh earns. I'm lucky that we can afford to do that. Most can't. I've heard about better and worse treatment abroad for people with my illness. It would be nice if we could just be kind. Sharing and kindness seem to come together.

Bruce02 Tue 08-Nov-16 07:13:54

Because some people are selfish, I won't teach my children to be.

Sharing is difficult. I teach my kids to selectively share. Something must be shared. Their own stuff doesn't have to be.

But I think you are talking about compassion. It's slightly different for me. I grew up in a single parent family and now I am earn well and am in a privileged position. I know people often end up in situations that can't have been predicted and teach my children that.

GreenAngelica Tue 08-Nov-16 07:22:28

Batteries that's so lovely. flowers

user1471545174 Tue 08-Nov-16 07:29:28

I don't really get the OPs point. I am in the opposite position too - poor background, successful career. I have always paid tax and given to charities (privately).

Sometimes people from wealthy backgrounds want to tell others how to behave, I have noticed this tendency. And make their particular circumstances into a generality.

My DH is a bit like this and shares and lends like crazy, then moans when things don't come back, get broken or are defaulted on. What does he expect?

I never share but if I don't want or need something any more, I'll give it away not sell it.

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