"C.S.Lewis once remarked 'Badness is only spoiled goodness'. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be the parent or sibling to a spoiled brat, or worst still, married to one?
Conventional wisdom informs us that adult spoiled brats just doesn't magically appear on the scene one day out of nowhere, but are cultivated by an overindulgent parent throughout their childhood. Adult brats are spoiled by daily parental acts of overindulgence when they are children; not kindness. Such children are spoiled because their parents substitute presence for presents and things instead of touch. No child will ever turn out a spoiled brat due to having been lavished with a surfeit of love.
Two things I particularly remember about my own upbringing was a ploy that my mum used often to keep me happy and content, along with her warning about the personal dangers of materialism if we are surrounded in life by too many things that were too easily acquired. She essentially believed that providing a child with 'too happy a childhood' where they want for nothing can spoil a promising life. The second and most important thing I recall was the importance of loving and feeling loved in one's life in establishing contentment at the moment. When food and new clothes were scarce, she gave us love and reassurance in abundance. While she had few worldly possessions to give, she always gave of herself. A good ploy of hers in helping all her children to improve was to let them overhear the good things she told others about them.
While I have known a few women who I would take every opportunity of never renewing contact with because of their negative character traits, I have only ever come across one whom I felt like dumping in a trash can along with the rest of her values.
Her name was Maureen; ironically, a name that had always been dear to me as it was my late mother's name. This Maureen, however, had been born with a general dislike for anything in the world that normal everyday people might like. She was, in short, an insufferable snob and was seemingly proud of it!
Nothing was too good for her because nothing was ever good enough for her! She wore the finest clothes yet dressed like a hussy on heat. She ate in the best restaurants and always complained about the service received. She wore high heels that heightened her seven inches to help her look down on 'lesser mortals' and she was constantly moving house and changing husbands in the forlorn hope of better prospects.
Her second husband once told me that holidays with her were a pain in the butt as the only thing that seemed to please her was upsetting others along the way. When the sun shone it was too hot, the rain was too wet and the golden sands of the Jamaican beaches that they frequently visited had this annoying habit of sticking between one's toes.
Life inexorably went on complainingly with this adult brat, until one day she got her comeuppance. One year, while in France, she visited a cafe which was a high-class establishment. The French Cafe was called the 'Les Deux Magots' in St. Germain. This eating place was daily filled by the richest of patrons. Every single detail was taken care of by its staff from the moment of each patron having one's coat taken from them by the waiter upon entering, to having an attendant bring one's luxurious car around to the front upon leaving. It had established itself as a legend for the finest of foods and wine and was positioned opposite the St. Germain Church tower which dates from 1090.
As the lady devoured her third plate of fresh oysters, and before the last oyster had slid down her slimy throat, she died from some raw oyster fatality. Only six people were said to have attended her funeral service and three of them were ex-husbands who'd no doubt come to finally see her off before having a nice seafood meal together while they swapped horror stories of their husbandly encounters with the brat.
If you happen to be one of those people who are prone to the envy of seeing others materially well-off while you have to financially struggle to make ends meet, think briefly on the spoiled brat mantra that constantly says 'I just can't live without this or that' and remind yourself reassuringly that we can live without anything that we weren't born with or won't have alongside us in our coffin when we die." William Forde: August 9th, 2018.