Are You Ever Disappointed by your Kids’ Lack of Gratitude?


November 27, 2013 by Katia

I challenge you to respond with a “no” to the following question “have your kids ever rewarded you with a tantrum for something you did, which you thought was actually kinda nice?” BTW, please don’t say anything if YOU win ‘K?thx.

I wrote about playground transcendental experiences and the dichotomy between our expectations and reality when it comes to thankfulness. And it’s not as boring as it sounds. And you can find my post on the Queen Latifah website, which WOOHOO!

Happy Thanksgiving, folks, and Happy Chanukkah!

P.S. Remember when my husband was away? Click this to watch the rave party at our place that weekend.


17 thoughts on “Are You Ever Disappointed by your Kids’ Lack of Gratitude?

  1. Nina Badzin says:

    I clicked over and read the article. So well said, Kaita. I really liked the analogy from your art history professors. That totally makes sense! So cool seeing you on that site, too!

    • Katia says:

      Oh, thank you so much, my dear! I’m glad you liked that analogy, it made sense to me too! It’s kind of a “duh” observation that bringing yourself back to the age that your child is in to experience what they’re experiencing will promote a better understanding, but it does work for me.

  2. I’m going to have to remember this whenever I deal with kids. They don’t understand gratitude yet.

    • Katia says:

      I think it’s true. They do experience gratitude and express it to you but I don’t think they have a perception of ‘gratitude’. They experience it but don’t theorize it, which is why it often doesn’t come when we expect it.

  3. Shannon says:

    It’s tough. I think gratitude is something that comes with age. When I look back it boggles my mind how unappreciative of things I was when I was a child, mostly because when you are young it is all about you, and bot the bigger picture. That said, I think it’s important to teach your kids to be thankful as best as they can. Happy Thanksgiving!

  4. Such an interesting observation, as if US were never THEM, I love this!

  5. Mama C. says:

    Great piece, Katia! Queen Latifah? You’ve hit the big time!!! Congrats! This is awesome.

    • Katia says:

      Thank you so much, Mama C.! Still have to stop by your blog. I’ve been really bad lately, totally disorganized. I blame it all on the job search.

  6. Hi, Katia! Great post. I’m so nostalgic about the whinges my kids had when they were little. No, really. Because the good news is that the fun continues – the whine transforms into carefully crafted plaidoiries from condescending but adorably out-of-synch teens who don’t seem to realise that you cannot/will not dig a hole under the bank for them to keep up with the latest fashion in telecommunications, pullovers or family cars. By the way, I am majorly impressed. Writing for Queen Latifa…. wowsers, girl, you are the bees knees 😀

  7. Julie says:

    Re the comment above, as a parent of 3 teenager, I too love your summing up of teenagerhood! I do remember being horribly embarrassed one birthday/christmas when someone was spectacularly ungrateful for a gift(something they already had I think), I went nuts at them all and said they were to say thank you even if someone gives them a mouldy cabbage in a bag as a present. They still talk/tease me about the mouldy cabbage in a bag so I must have made an impression! I am so tempted to actually give one of them a cabbage one year just to test them!

    • Katia says:

      I think it would be so awesome if you did!

      Mine are not teenagers yet(4.5 and 16 months) but can definitely roll with the best of them. I can totally see how this would apply to teenagers too. Thanks so much for your hilarious comment!

  8. Alecia says:

    Love this article as it has happened to me countless times with a 7 and 5 year old. It is very disappointing when they don’t like something you do for them or get them. It is also hard to imagine their world when it was so long ago that you were in their shoes. Happy SITs Day!

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What makes a happy new year? 
This is my story, but I suspect, it might also be yours. 
Lately I haven't been writing much. Forget writing, I can't even produce an entertaining Facebook update. Why? Because selecting the right words requires an effort and I don't have any effs (for effort) left to give. First I stopped posting to my blog, then my blog's Facebook page and eventually my own Facebook profile. I'm making an effort but I find it draining. Who knew that posting funny updates on your profile is not so easy? 
Nothing dramatic is going on in my life. Work's been extra busy with some newly added responsibilities and stress, bedtimes are still long-ish and my sleep is still often interrupted, but it's not nearly as often as before. My "me time" is limited and starts late. The emotional energy I invest in my work, the nature of my sleep and the limited time I spend on myself leave me with little energy to spare. Any energy I have left and then some is invested in my kids.

My kids, whom you all know I adore and admire, are daring, often reckless and very young and inexperienced. Sometimes I'm surprised at the extent of their lack of caution and I'm always, always disproportionately worried. I know that because I'm unlike the other mothers around me. I come from a family of worriers and anxious people. My neural pathways always lead me to a dead end - literally. I catastrophize and imagine the worst outcome. For years I've been able to rationalize and talk myself out of useless, time consuming and energy wasting internal struggles with often imagined worrisome scenarios, but now that words are burdensome and my energy is dwindled, I can't. 
I'm entering this new year happier and more optimistic than I've been in awhile. Yesterday I went to see my doctor. After a lot of internal turmoil and thoughts about cancelling my appointment I came in and blurted out: I think I'm suffering from some form of anxiety. His very calm and matter of fact-ish reaction ("like everyone else in the 21st century") wasn't dismissive, but reassuring. Self care sometimes means looking deeper. 
I wish everyone a happy new year of good mental health. It's the basis for everything.
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