The best advice I can share with other moms is this: Don't give in to guilt. Your kids won't love you less because you refused to buy them the latest video game. If anything, they'll love you more when they see you as the strong and financially capable woman who keeps a roof over their heads.
No one wants to listen to whining, crying or complaining, and we all want to spare our children as much heartache as possible. Unfortunately, our overzealous attempts to pave the way can result in spoiled, self-entitled children.
What we've taught today's children is that they get a trophy and a snack simply for showing up. We've taught them that everything should be celebrated with food and a party. And we've taught them that ordinary days -- with no treats or parties -- are somehow lacking.
I've been so focused on teaching my kids lessons, I've failed to learn them myself. I need to help them learn to be happy (which is not the same as being overindulged). I can't do any of that with my credit card.
Consider what today's parents face -- the corporate influence, billions of dollars of advertising, and a banking technology that has taught children that money doesn't grow on trees, it comes flying out of ATMs.