I Want It Now: Navigating Childhood in a Materialistic World

Overview

In today's world of mega-stores and shop-til-you-drop mentality, people are spending more money than ever in an attempt to find fulfillment in their lives—and children are no exception. In fact, children and teens spend billions of dollars a year on clothes, entertainment, and fast food. In I Want It Now, parents are given the framework to understand how this culture of instant gratification influences their own and their children's spending habits. Bee-Gates discusses how using material goods as rewards or as ...

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Overview

In today's world of mega-stores and shop-til-you-drop mentality, people are spending more money than ever in an attempt to find fulfillment in their lives—and children are no exception. In fact, children and teens spend billions of dollars a year on clothes, entertainment, and fast food. In I Want It Now, parents are given the framework to understand how this culture of instant gratification influences their own and their children's spending habits. Bee-Gates discusses how using material goods as rewards or as emotional compensation affects young people's social and psychological development and the ways in which parents can counter materialism by fostering a strong self-concept, concern for others, and a sense of life's purpose in their children.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"One of the most important gifts we can give our children is the gift of wonder, and so often that window to wonder first opens when our children encounter the natural world. As Donna Bee-Gates so eloquently observes, a child's sense of wonder is most often stimulated by what adults may no longer be able to see. This essential book will help open our eyes."—Richard Louv, author, Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder

"This book is astonishing...in its scope, in its depth, in its mission. Parents who take to heart the wise counsel of Donna Bee-Gates, (buttressed as it is by the solid research findings that she seamlessly interweaves with her own thinking), will change their own lives, their childrens' lives, and make the world we inhabit together a better place to be. Bravo!"—April Lane Benson, Editor, I Shop, Therefore I Am: Compulsive Buying and the Search for Self, and author, Stopping Overshopping

"There is a 600-ton gorilla in the room with every mainstream American parent, only a gorilla would be nicer and more natural. I Want It Now takes it down to size, calls it what it is—materialism—and gives parents the insights to raise healthy, well-adjusted children in spite of it. Donna Bee-Gates brings meaning and simplicity to life in a society trampled by its own stuff."—Carol Holst, Co-Director, Simple Living America

"Bee-Gates puts into historical and cultural context the alarming preoccupation Western societies have with their stuff. She describes in detail the various forces that can compel children, both directly and indirectly, to try to solve their problems with material goods and helps parents to recognize these influences, counter them and replace them with more positive pursuits." —Kristin Taveira, newsday.com

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230602533
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 11/27/2007
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 5.49 (w) x 7.36 (h) x 0.66 (d)

Meet the Author

Donna Bee-Gates has been featured in the San Francisco Chronicle and has written for Bay Area Parent and Big Apple Parent. She is an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Child Development at San Jose State University. She lives in Cupertino, California.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Shop Until You Drop * How Did We Get Here? * The Parenting Evolution * Why Do We Do It?

• Unlearning Materialism: Mimicry & Boredom

• Unlearning Materialism: Peer Relationships

• The Big Picture * What's Next?

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