This topic can be a sensitive one for many people. In my Personal Insights blog I wrote from a personal/adult perspective. In this post I want to share my views from a child development perspective.
There are so many angles to this because we live in a Capitalistic Society where one’s socio-economic standing impacts the day-to-day so profoundly. In writing about this in a blog, I am challenged in how to best communicate my view. Further, the start point from a parenting perspective is very much your respective acumen in how to manage money. Therefore, as a parent who manages money (individually and/or for the household), what is your reference to not only teach your child about money, but to instill in them the innate understanding of how to manage their eventual income?
I won’t say I fell into this as a parent, as you know most things are not so coincidental. I also will not say that I was explicitly taught by my parents how to manage money, our conversations on this matter were not that advanced. However, my genesis in deliberately teaching my children about money stems from two things that did happen in my youth. First, I was not given an allowance when I was younger, so I really did not have money at my disposal. Therefore, I decided not to similarly put my kids in such a situation. Second, when I did start working (at about 16) I wasted my money. That summer I worked at McDonald’s and I am not sure I owned anything at the end of my time working. I had “wasted” the money on food, arcade games and other frivolous things that devalued my time. These two experiences motivated me to not have my daughters learn their management lessons in such a way.
As an adult, I also saw the impact of not learning how to manage money in your youth. This was exemplified with my wife. It is no secret that one of my wife’s weaknesses was money management when we first met. And seeing how she struggled in this area, despite talks and tactics, inspired