It has recently become very clear the 8 y.o. has a raging fit of self-entitlement. I have actually been considering this for quite some time--she always want the best, the most, the biggest of everything to the exclusion of her sisters and friends. Tonight she took it to a new level. DH grilled burgers, and everyone began eating while I got to a stopping place in my outline. When I wandered into the kitchen to grab a burger, DD screeched at me, "You're taking the last one!!!"
I just turned around and walked back out. I was ashamed of my daughter and of myself for letting her get this way. I'm afraid that I have overcompensated for my have-not background by letting my kids have too much.
I thought that I had been doing a pretty good job with my kids. I don't buy them things except at Christmas and their birthdays (Well, except books. I'm a sucker for books.) I have friends who buy their kids crap every single time they enter a store. That's not me. And when my kids want something they have to earn the money for it (or wait until their grandparents send cash.)
The other thing is that my twins are not like this at all. They are both very sweet and giving. I have read that twins generally have an innate sense of fairness since they have to share virtually everything from the time they are conceived. You can definitely see that in my girls.
So how have they managed to turn out so well while oldest DD is becoming the portrait of narcissism? Is it just the age difference? Please don't tell me all kids are like this as they get older. I think its because I have always leaned toward giving oldest DD more. Because the twins don't notice or care, and its easier to justify certain things merely because she is the oldest.
In any event, it has to stop. I refuse to raise a brat. I think I need to find some volunteer work for oldest DD so that she can see that not everyone leads the cushy life that she does. But I don't imagine too many organizations are looking for 8 y.o. volunteers. And I will no longer err on the side of giving her more, because the twins will start to notice eventually.
P.S. I know my posts of late make my oldest seem like a complete and total brat. That really isn't the case. She is so smart, makes perfect grades, and her teachers tell me she is an angel at school. Apparently the narcissism just comes out at home. And I think there is a jealousy thing going on because her sisters are twins and have built-in playmates and she doesn't have that with anybody.