Our expert says:
It sounds as though the kids are far too focussed on getting money and Things, rather than on just being affectionate kids. Who is encouraging them to focus in this way, or why, is no clear. Sometimes where there has been a divorce or separation, kids spontaneously learn how to exploit parental guilt and competitiveness, and this is not merely tiresome, but a really bad lesson to learn, for life, about how to profitably relate to other people. Some family counselling might be a good idea.
It is child neglect, borderline abuse, to fail to give them boundaries, rules and discipline. Sharing normal household chores is an important benefit for them, and they should not be deprived of it. What sort of useless adults does he want them to grow into ?
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