Most parents face this question sometime between pre-school and teen years…”Mum/Dad are we rich or poor?”. It might be phrased in a different way “why can’t we buy this gift – we can’t afford it?” or “But my friend Sally gets an allowance – why not me- are we SO poor?” . How on earth should you as parents deal with this subject? You wouldn’t want them to feel insecure or worried that you are poor but at the same time don’t want to give a message that its always ok to spend on luxuries. Here are a few tips on the same:
# Firstly, your child is asking these questions either out of curiosity or concern – curiosity is to be encouraged in children and concern needs to be addressed – so don’t turn away- make sure you do give a reply.
# Explain sensible spending habits make sense for all – rich or poor – so buying something is not automatically linked to the fact if you are rich or poor.
# A quick talk on needs vs wants might be useful, though be careful you don’t sound too preachy.
# Mention how other friends could make different choices on how to spend their money – but we need to make our own choices .
# Discuss how non-money things can make you happy as well- a warm hug, kisses and laughter, a hot chocolate cup, looking at a rainbow.
Keep your message simple and consistent – your partner should give out same cues. Children are quick to move on to new things, once their curiosity /concerns are satiated. All the Best !