• http://www.facebook.com/people/Carol-Rosenberg-Giambri/655311615 Carol Rosenberg Giambri

    Denny, super post. Seeing kids as individuals is so important. They can never live up to be someone else even “inheriting” another person’s name. What amazes me is how some kids not even knowing their distant relative but can take on the characteristics of that person they never knew or spoke to. After reading this I am not in favor of passing on the same name like John Jr., John I, John 2. As parents we always hope we allow our kids their power of choice to learn and grow through.

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Thanks Carol! I agree, it is so unfair to set our expectations of one based on the actions and choices of another. Thanks for commenting!

  • Dlangley66

    I am always amazed at the people who make the choice to name their children, jr, the II, or III. This is a misguided idea that they are giving their children a name when in fact they are living vicariously through their children.

    There are many problems that come from this, the childs ego is either damaged or over inflated because of having to work so hard to be noticed. Then later on in life when they need to have their own identity they don’t have it.

    I feel no one should ever be named a Junior, II or the III…I think it is in a sense robbing the indiviudual of who they are to become.

  • Carla J Gardiner

    I wish I had read this years ago when raising my two kids. Although we never compared the two, somehow they compared themselves. With this information maybe we could have helped them through those formative years.

    As a grandma of four I highly recommend any parent or grandparent get Denny’s book. Packed full of good solid guidance for raising up kids with self esteem instead of numerous issues.

  • http://www.elviesessentials.com Elvie Look

    I wish I could call you mom! We had one strange aunty in our family, and I HATED it when mom would say “you are just like Anne!” I was nothing like her and to this day that still bothers me. I resent those comparisons too. You have excellent reasoning, love your article! Thanks “mom!” :D I am adopting you.

  • Naomi

    All very true and I am very tempted to buy mini me. I look at my kids and think where do they get that from often – oh yes me!

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Consider it done…you are now officially adopted! (so now get over here and organize my kitchen Ha!) Thank you so much for your comments and sweet words, being called Mom has always been the highest compliment…Blessings~

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Naomi, I know exactly what you mean…that moment of “aha”…it’s a natural thing for kids to pick up from what we model…I sometimes catch my grandkids doing or saying something that I know comes from me or their grandfather and I have to stop them and remind them that is my choice or opinion or whatever the case may be and encourage them to give it thought to be sure it is what they think or want and not just “following” in our footsteps…high five to you for being so observant with your kids! Thanks for sharing!

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    I really appreciate your words of support Carla! Thanks! HUGS! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Well said Donna! You make a great point of the damage it does to their ability to gain a sense of their own identity. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  • Anonymous

    Denny, as you know, I work with women who want to get control over their finances. This article added a new tool to my arsenal: I had not considered how childhood comparison with others could be hindering their natural tendency to control an aspect of their life that is so fundamental: their money. Thank you!

  • Dlangley66

    Hi Sharon,
    I work with people and their financials issues as well.

    It is amazing how many have not been taught to reason through their financial troubles. For many years I have observed, listened and assisted by teaching them what to do. It is also amazing to me how closely tide money troubles and emotional troubles are tied together. Bless you Sharon for helping these women become strong, and helping them with a most fundemental part of life.

    Thank you also, for helping me to realize I am on exactly the right path.Blessings love and light.

  • Anonymous

    Just like Elvie’s comment below, I hated it when my mother would always compare me to others in the family in a negative way too! I think so far I’ve successfully managed not to do the same to my child, and I cringe when I hear other parents doing so to their kids. (I’m sure I’m probably messing up in some other way, but I think I’m on top of this one.) Thanks so much Denny!

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Lily, Thanks for commenting…parenting is an on going learning process even for ole’ grandma’s like me!Ha!:)

  • http://twitter.com/SusanMcKenzieWY Susan McKenzie

    It’s amazing how long-lasting and far-reaching those comparisons have… I remember, as if it were yesterday, my mother comparing my hair to my sister’s… and from that day forward, I always believed I was ugly and worthless. I try very hard not to continue this pattern in my own family! Denny, what you are doing for today’s and tomorrow’s families is invaluable… thanks so much for adopting all of us into your family, through your writing!

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Susan, your comment nearly brought me to tears…It is amazing how one instance like your mother’s comment about your sister’s hair can affect a child. I see this so often which is why I wrote Mini-Me Syndrome. I truly believe parents are completely unaware of the impact an innocent statement has…and if they knew they would never ever repeat it. It is the awareness that makes the difference…thank you for sharing your personal experience, it will be a real eye-opener for so many. Blessings~

  • http://10bestchoices.com Olga Hermans

    Yeah, it is very important to let our children know that they are unique in themselves. Every fingerprint and every voice is uniquely made and so is our character; we all have a destiny given by God. Especially our kids need to know that, that they were planned and that they should compare themselves with others. I think I have said things like that to my own children though, but not to my grandchildren..I’ve learned!! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Thanks for sharing your insights Olga…I love your analogy of our uniqueness beginning with our fingerprints!

  • http://www.uncommongeneration.com Claudia Looi

    A great article. My mom was just here recently and we were talking about how she always compare me with my neighbor’s daughter. How deep the wound was to be compared with another. When I became a mother, I compare my daughter with my neighbor’s daughter. We agreed it was unhealthy. Thank God I see the need to change and be free. Denny you are doing a great job.

  • http://www.facebook.com/denny.hagel Denny Hagel

    Thank you Claudia, as parents we often don’t realize that what we do or say has the potential to negatively impact our children on such a powerful level. Our self-esteem is so fragile…congratulations for recognizing this, your daughter is blessed to have you for a mom!

  • http://profiles.google.com/jacqueline.nunan Jacqueline Nunan

    I have a child who will never been normal – she has a different set of gifts to most, and school is making her very aware of that as children begin to compare themselves more. Our school, however, is Montessori, and relieved of the need to be taught as a group, children are encouraged to pursue their own interests and their own talents in a way that makes it easy for children to embrace their own individualism. When everyone is special, no one is “normal”, and that’s the way it should be. Turning to the idea of comparisons, this worries me quite a lot as I have one child who is intellectually gifted, and one who is a brilliant, sunny, perfectly normal child. I try not to compare them, but there will be times when I want one to be more calm and relaxed like her sister, and times when I will wish the other was more focused and directed. I guess the lesson is to help them learn from each other, without suggesting either is in any way lacking, or wrong in being who they are.

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