The rich child syndrome also known as “affluenza” or “ricopatía” does not refer to the children of wealthy people. It is related to the fact of giving the children everything they ask, without costing them a minimum effort ; situation that, in general, occurs in families with high economic income.
However, It is a pattern that can also occur in middle class families , in which parents try (unconsciously many times) to supply their physical and emotional absences with material goods.
What is the origin of the term “rich child syndrome”?
Although this condition is not recognized as a clinical diagnosis by the associations of psychiatry in the world, its use has been extending since the 1990s. The “affluenza” was the term with which it began to spread this condition to be bounded in the book The Golden Ghetto: The Psychology of Affluence .
In this book, the author refers to Like the spoiled children of wealthy families present irresponsible behavior and lack of empathy . This results as a direct consequence of To spoil the child excessively, overprotecting him and supplying the lack of time with gifts and money.
How to know if we are fostering the “rich child syndrome” in our children?
You do not need to have a lot of money to suffer from this syndrome . In fact, cases of “richness” in middle-class children and adolescents are becoming more frequent.
Parents who because of their responsibilities or because of the effort to position themselves financially They do not spend enough time raising their children , they end up offering them gifts materials to fill that gap.
One of the first signs of the “rich child syndrome” is observed when the child expresses boredom relatively frequently . This happens despite having a room full of toys and all kinds of fashionable technological devices.
When we want the child to calm down or to avoid tantrums we give something material, we are encouraging this conduct . Also, if we reward you all the time for any favor you make to someone or for being good.
Another way to encourage it is buying expensive gifts, even if it is not a special occasion or postponing family expenses to fulfill some whim of the child. These attitudes on the part of parents give rise to the “rich child syndrome”, endangering their emotional and physical health.
How can this syndrome affect our children?
- Most young people are affected by developing a low self esteem and lose motivation.
- They are unable to tolerate frustrations, because they believe they deserve everything.
- They do not face their own problems. They think that dad and mom will always come to solve them .
- Their unconsciousness leads them to be irresponsible and to lack discipline.
- They manifest high levels of stress and anxiety in the absence of school performance.
- They have difficulties in keeping their relationships with their classmates in harmony.
- They become restless and irritable over unimportant matters and end up being very unhappy.
- They often end up engaging in harmful behaviors such as alcohol or drug use .
Can we avoid it?
It is vital to explain to the child the effort made by their parents to maintain a Lifestyle more comfortable. Also that to get things you have to work, and sometimes very hard . Likewise, you should be taught that in order to give us a taste, you have to save.
They must understand that they have responsibilities within the home that they must meet , without having to be rewarded for it. They should be taught to set the table, take out the trash and help sort and clean their room. These activities will reinforce your values.
You have to involve the child with real life . They must learn to value what they have and to cultivate respect for others. As parents, we should not overprotect them. Contrarily, we must offer them the tools that help them face their own problems.
Being strict with children is also an act of love . With this, we will be forming children with a correct ethical and emotional development. You also love your son when you put limits on him. They need to strive to get what they crave .
The frustrations they are also part of learning , and knowing how to face them is fundamental. With this, you will encourage the development of the emotional and psychological capacities that will make you a happier adult.