Letting your kids win?

Kelli - posted on 05/05/2011 ( 30 moms have responded )

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I thought of this as I was commenting on another post and have had this debate with friends. Do you let your kids "win" when playing with them? I.e. video games, football, soccer, board games, etc.

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[deleted account]

I certainly didn't but I know people who did because they wanted to build their child's self-esteem. When I suggested that it was being built upon a lie, I got the look of death. When I further suggested that when the child played against people who did NOT do that, the child's carefully built up self-esteem will crash knowing that they aren't quite as good as they think they are.

Amber - posted on 05/05/2011

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I don't let him win, but I don't play using intense strategy so that I win either. I try to make sure that he has a fair chance. I mean, there are a lot of things that I can think of as an adult to increase my odds of winning games fairly, but I don't because he doesn't have that insight yet.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 05/05/2011

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Sure, I let my son win. But not all the time. I think showing him that he can win can give him confidence, and when I win, it shows him that winning isn't everything. It shows him how to lose gracefully.

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K. - posted on 05/10/2011

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No, I don't let them win. That annoys me as much as those stupid 'participation' trophies EVERY kids gets at the end of a sports season.

[deleted account]

When our kids and us play board games or other games it's a fair game. Sometimes Will and I win and sometimes the kids win but we tell them its ok not to win everytime.

Carol - posted on 05/10/2011

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I love the age where they try to cheat - I think it is around age 3-4. It is the cutest!

Cyndel - posted on 05/10/2011

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No. I've never let him win. My brother has an awful case of sore loser, and I used to and had a hard time getting over (I still struggle if I'm in a bad mood for other reasons), I want my son to learn from a young age how to lose with grace.

Stifler's - posted on 05/09/2011

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I like playing stuff like Uno where it's not really a game of skill anyway. Logan isn't old enough to play anything yet though. I can't wait til we can teach him to play Monopoly and Uno.

Charlie - posted on 05/09/2011

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If we are mucking around with running races I let him win but Jenga I play to win LOL.

Jane - posted on 05/09/2011

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Depends on a lot of factors. How old a child? How is the child's self esteem? Is the child a good winner? Is the child a good loser? Will the child learn more from winning than from losing?

Mommy - posted on 05/09/2011

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Sometimes, yes. But when they start to show off I let them have it. lol. In all seriousness, I think it is important for children to learn how to lose AND win gracefully, and playing games at home is a great way to teach that. I hate how we have turned into a society where everyone gets a trophy just because they showed up, and no one gets their feelings hurt. Our kids are in for a rude awakening when they get into the real world.

[deleted account]

not often. If I do it is one that is a teaching game. all fun games you win on your own skill as I don't have much skill with most fun games. :)

Jayce - posted on 05/06/2011

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I've just started playing games with my 3 yr old, he doesn't quite understand it all yet but I've let him win a few times and he's also lost a few times.

I was an adult before I realized that my grandfather altered the rules to crokinole to make it easier for the grandkids to win. I felt kind of silly when I found out but only because I'd never bothered to read the rules for myself.

Jenn - posted on 05/06/2011

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I do sometimes, because who wants to lose ALL the time? But I do think it's also important to learn that you can't ALWAYS win.

Pam - posted on 05/06/2011

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yes sometimes we do let them win espec if they lose so much as we have taught them its as much fun loosing as winning and try to keep that thought in the forefront of their minds.

Joanna - posted on 05/06/2011

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Well my oldest is only 3 1/2, so I do let her win some things on occasion. If we are racing, I let her win every other game... her legs are shorter than mine so I feel like I have unfair advantage, and I want her to enjoy running and playing with me. If we are playing a game, I will usually win first, so she can kind of see how it's done, then I might let her win the next game, as long as she's playing by the rules... so she can understand how it's played and feel how good it is to win and want to play more in the future. But once she's a little older that'll end. I want her to try her best and know losing isn't bad as long as you tried your hardest.

Michele - posted on 05/06/2011

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The only thing I let my 4 yo son win is slug bug. And when we play games, they are often modified for him ,like face up dominoes. He loves to play Yahtzee with me, but I track his scores obviously. He just loves the rolling the dice part anyway. The 14 and 12 yo - NO!

Desiree - posted on 05/06/2011

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Nope stupid move doesn't teach a child anything.The object to play fair and win fair.

Stifler's - posted on 05/05/2011

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No. What are they going to do when they start playing Monopoly and footy with friends "MY MUM LETS ME WIN AND SO SHOULD YOU"... "go home sook".

Lady Heather - posted on 05/05/2011

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I'm way too competitive. I don't even let her win at colouring. Yes, it's a competition.

Elfrieda - posted on 05/05/2011

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I only have a toddler so we don't play games yet, but I have a hard time respecting my cousin's kids, who NEED to win so badly that they will even cheat to do so. The adults always just give in and allow extra turns or just overlook the cheating because it's easier, but at what cost?? I want a child who won't cheat! When I was small, I had to make sure my little sister won some of the time or else she got too discouraged and didn't want to play with me, so I'd give myself a handicap to start, and then play as hard as I could. That way it was fun for me, and not hopeless for her. I'll probably do the same with my son.

Bonnie - posted on 05/05/2011

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Nope. They need to learn how to play fair and square because that is how it will be when they are older.

Corrie - posted on 05/05/2011

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I feel as though if i didn't 'LET' him win, when he won by himself that would feel like winning to me :)
It would mean he'd learnt. And not only that, he wouldn't have grown up thinking it was essential to win all the time. Feel pride when he does.

Kelli - posted on 05/05/2011

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My 7 yr old son does let my soon to be 4 yr old daughter win sometimes!! :) He'll play soccer with her and let her score or he'll give her a remote while he is playing and she says she won...even though the remote isn't even turned on!! It's actually pretty cute, but when I'm playing memory with her...I don't let her win, I like to win at memory!! :) Mean mommy!

Jodi - posted on 05/05/2011

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I have a 6 year old daughter. She talks herself into believing she won....does that count? But she can talk the ear off a freaking donkey......



But honestly, she does actually "kick arse" at Rock Paper Scissor.....(her words).

Krista - posted on 05/05/2011

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My kids are a little too young to have encountered this yet, but I will definitely not be letting them win all the time! I can see myself letting them every once in a while when they're little so they don't get totally discouraged, but kids need to know how to lose, and how to handle it properly. Teaching grade one, it's pretty obvious which kids were allowed to win every time at home. They are devastated when they have to play with kids at school who don't let them win!

Jodi - posted on 05/05/2011

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8 year old throwing a temper tantrum? Forget it, in this house it is unacceptable and will have consequences. And temper tantrums over VIDEO games of all things....totally banned.

Jodi - posted on 05/05/2011

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"Just a side note...I really hate the little two line box that we have to type in. It's a little hard to proof read what I'm typing to make sure it reads correctly! :) "

I agree Kelli, it sucks.....BIG time.

Kelli - posted on 05/05/2011

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Just a side note...I really hate the little two line box that we have to type in. It's a little hard to proof read what I'm typing to make sure it reads correctly! :)

Kelli - posted on 05/05/2011

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We don't let our kids win either. My son and husband play video games together and my husband never lets him win. He says he'll be able to win on his own soon enough and the couple of times he actually does beat him, he is SOO excited that he beat daddy!! It's really cute, he talks about it for ever. Like Jodi said, feels and achievement when the win on their own.

We have some neighbors that were at hour house one day with their son who is a year older than ours. They were all taking turns playing a football game and my husband kept beating our son. The dad of the neighbor boy, brought up that he was surprised Ronin, my son, wasn't having a fit because he wasn't winning. He said that his son would be throwing a fit by now if he lost every game he played against him. The dad said that he always has to let him win or he will throw a "tempertantrum". The kid is 8, I think it isn't teaching them good "life lessons". Not sure that is the right phrase or not, but if you always let them win, once they are in a situation where they aren't with a family member and that person isn't going to "let" them win, what do you do then?

Jodi - posted on 05/05/2011

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No..... I don't even let my son win when we play scrabble. But he plays a DAMN good game. I want him to feel some achievement when he DOES beat me, that it was a genuine win (he is 13 and has an exceptional vocabulary for a 13 year old).



We play Uno, I play as I play, I don't let anyone win....



Some games we play, we pair up and do teams if we feel the kids could not compete.



EVERY now and then we may give the occasional "concession" but we dont' go out of our way to let the kids win. We just go out of our way to ensure the kids have fun.



Computer games? Well, I'm kind of hopeless, and they don't let me win, so there is NO WAY I am going to let them win if I am doing well!!!! That's just a bonus!!

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