“O Mom! Don’t be a snob, it is just 2000 bucks. If you don’t want to give, I will ask Dad. But, please for heaven’s sake, I don’t want another lecture” was my Elder Sister’s 16 year old daughter’s reaction when her mother asked why she needs these 2000 rs. Embarrassed by her daughter’s behavior, my sister told me in a sad voice, kids these days don’t understand the value of money.
I remember the way our parents brought us up, we used to get a fixed pocket money and for every penny extra, my mother used to ask why do I need that. And, we had to give her full details. Our parents taught us the value of savings and how difficult it is to earn. The result is – that we have grown up as independent individuals who respect money and understand its worth. Now, the question arises, where we went wrong in passing on the same values to our kids, because they surely don’t have them. If we dig deeper we can find those answers among st ourselves only.
1. We wish to give the best to our children. This is my child; he should not go for second best. He will not go through the hardships I went through to reach the place where I am today. This kind of blind love is making our kids more adaptive to getting whatever they want. And, when the time will come for them to fetch for themselves, they will have tough time as they never learnt the hard way.
2. Not enrolling our Children into daily household expense management. When we were kids, our Mother used to give us money and send us to nearby Kiryana store to get her the stuff she needed for her kitchen. This habit of hers taught us that nothing is free; we have to pay something to get something. And, nowadays we have become so used to Mall Culture or Online Shopping that we don’t send our kids out. They just need to ask their parents if they need anything for school project, and they will get the stuff without knowing the cost of it.
3. Dual Income. We all know it is difficult to survive on a single income these days. So, mostly both the parents are working. Now this thing has its disadvantages as well. Parents tend to spend more on their Children as there is a surplus. As parents, sometimes we fail to understand the difference between needs and wants of our kids.
4. Culture of Excess. Wherever we look around we see parents agreeing to the demands of their little ones. So, we also tend to get emotional and say if he can give his son Xbox, why can’t I? But somewhere, we forget that we should set boundaries to this culture otherwise it is going to consume our Children.
The reasons are multiple leading to exploitation of young minds and our failure as good Parents. If we want our coming generation to value money, we need to teach them the hard way. We can start step by step. We can fix a monthly budget for them. We can open their bank account, and let them operate it by themselves. We should also take them to our work places once in a while, to make them understand that money isn’t earned by going to one place daily between specified timings; Money is earned by constant hard work and prudent savings.
Charu Hastir, CFPCM is founder of www.theriteplan.com. Rite plan is an online financial planning portal created to achieve a single objective of providing easy and Do It Yourself Financial Planning to netizens. Rite Plan is wholly owned by Tikkun Olam Financial Planning Services LLP. Please visit: https://theriteplan.com/index.php?route=common/home/