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The Most Important Gift You’ll Buy Your Kids This Holiday Season – Thank You Cards!

Updated on December 16, 2009


By most accounts, kids are in trouble today. We’ve created a society of people who feel that they’re special for no apparent reason. We have told kids they’re special since birth but never had them earn that title nor did they really have anything that they were particularly special at but we wanted to make sure that they had high self esteem. Well now we have a generation that thinks they’re “too good” for almost everything. For their first job they won’t work a minimum wage job because they’re “special.”They won’t do almost anything they don’t want to do because they think “special” people don’t have to. Well, I’m here to tell you that they all need a big kick in the ass and reality check. While kids (and teenagers, and twenty-somethings, etc.) feel that they are entitled to everything without doing anything one of the most basic of human interactions has ceased and I think it’s wrong. The thank you card, people. So here is my plea to all the parents out there who are running around trying to keep their children happy by getting them everything that’s on their list, lest their children be unhappy with them and no longer want to be their friend, I say the most important gift you’ll buy your kids this holiday season – Thank You Cards! – Don’t Get Me Started!

When I was younger I remember our mother sitting us down after a major holiday and we would have to start writing. We wrote to the aunt from Florida who gave us something we didn’t even remember ten minutes after it came out of the box. We wrote our grandparents who lived on the opposite coast. Anyone who gave us anything for a birthday, Hanukkah or any other reason got a thank you note from us. Although people tend to think that an email will do the trick in this electronic age (I have a friend whose husband ended the marriage via text, telling her to look at an email that stated that he was leaving her) some people don’t even make their kids do that and what is even more shocking is that when you confront the parents about it they’re offended that you think a thank you note is in order. What?!? Are you kidding me? You’re offended? Another reason I feel my age and realize that people are just stupid and raising stupid children.

As my spouse used to say to our nephews when they were younger, “Even if you don’t like the gift, have the savvy to thank someone for it properly so that you’ll increase your chances to get another gift from them and maybe it’ll be something you like.” The problem is that we’re all supposed to keep giving regardless of whether our gift gets acknowledged or not. Well I choose not…not to give that is. In this day and age when we’re all sending gifts through the Internet, you would think that it would be even more reason for parents to have their kids write thank you notes. You see once you hit “purchase” unless you want to spend all your time tracking it online you really have no idea if the gift got the proper person or not. But guess what? That’s still not the reason for your kids to write thank you notes. The reason kids should write thank you notes is as follows:

-          It lets kids know that they need to appreciate gifts and the people who give them to them

-          Nothing in life is free and a gift isn’t either, it requires a thank you note as payment

-          Acknowledging a kindness teaches all of us not to take anyone or anything for granted

-          Respect, if someone takes the time to give you a gift, respect them enough to send them a note

There are dozens of reasons to send a thank you note and none to not send a thank you note. I just think that parents get so caught up in defending their children’s actions and putting them on a pedestal that they’ve forgotten that there’s more to parenting than telling a relative what they’re to get for their child and then making an excuse when you never hear from them after the gift is received. Or is it? The most important gift you’ll buy your kids this holiday season – Thank You Cards! – Don’t Get Me Started!

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    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 6 years ago from North Carolina

      Teaching kids to write thank you notes is a very important thing for them. Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      LBR 8 years ago

      What a GREAT blog!!!!!

    • profile image

      Kerry Karsian 8 years ago

      Amen, my always-right Scotty. I say this as I force my darling girl to slog through the 32 thank you's for birthday gifts that need to be written BEFORE Christmas gifts start arriving. God, I hate December birthdays, but I love you...How much...Don't get ME started! Happy and Merry to you and Michael.