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#1 of 38 Old 03-03-2015, 07:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Pocket money?

If you give pocket money how much do you give to 14/15 year olds? My ex thinks I give my kids too much, but out of it they have to buy thier school lunches as well as save for anything they want other than clothes. They also use the money to buy the foods/drinks I will not for at home such as candy or soda (or coffee). I just want to get an idea of they are really getting too much or not. ($20 a week for each of them)

It's actually less than I used to get at their age, and I didn't have to buy my school lunch out of it.
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#2 of 38 Old 03-03-2015, 08:02 PM
 
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My kiddo (14 and in college) get $50 a month but can earn more so its probably closer to $75

Sometimes he buys snacks on campus or soda, sometimes he goes to the mall with friends and will buy something. He generally buys his own DVD's and video games.

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#3 of 38 Old 03-03-2015, 08:57 PM
 
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My kids are 16 and 18 and get more than that, but they are expected to buy their gas with it (both drive), buy their own toiletries (shampoo, makeup, etc), plus it is their money for running around with their friends or buying music or whatever. They get their money on the first of the month and have to budget for the month.


How much do your kids' lunches cost? $20 a week doesn't seem like much to me if it is also for lunch.


My DH figured out the amounts for each kid based on how much the actually need plus a cushion so they could have a little fun. I'm the one who is the stickler than they need to be in a position to budget and plan.

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#4 of 38 Old 03-03-2015, 09:10 PM
 
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I went back and looked at kiddo's bank account for the past few months (I got ds a pre-paid bank card years ago and just recently changed him over to a teen checking account) and realized he is getting closer to $100/month. He doesn't necessarily spend $100 month but its there for him. He has that cushion as well.

He doesn't buy lunch from that.

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#5 of 38 Old 03-04-2015, 07:12 AM
 
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My approach to allowance is that we give it not as free thing, nor as payment for chores, but in order to teach kids how to manage money. So with what we give them they need to learn how to balance wants vs. needs, learn how to save, and also (hopefully) learn to give to people less fortunate and/or causes that improve the planet.

School lunches in our house would need to be determined as want vs need. If they are a need, I would cover it and not expect them to pay for it out of that money. If you believe they could make a sandwich at home and school lunch is just a convenience, it becomes a 'want' and they should pay. So that is a value thing for each family. Depending on the price of school lunches, and whether it is a 'need,' I agree with Linda, $20 seems low. Removing school lunches, it seems high!

We have always multiplied the child's age X 2 to arrive at a figure per month. That said, when my oldest started driving and working PT, we bumped it to $50/mo. I think it is important that kids feel low enough on funds that they see the value of working and developing work skills, even if it is part time. So we didn't want to give them plenty of money so they had no 'wants' to save up for.

I hope this is making sense.

 
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#6 of 38 Old 03-04-2015, 08:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess this is just another way of ex to play mind games with me. Lunch costs $2.50, but on pizza day ds#1 will buy extra lol. I leave it up to them if they want to save money and pack their own lunch, and that is what ds#2 does. Ds#3 (who is 10) only gets $10 every 2 weeks which goes on toys and candy or computer games.

I am trying to teach the kids that they need to budget for normal expenses, and save for the unexpected.
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#7 of 38 Old 03-04-2015, 01:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just heard back from the ex, he thinks $5 a week would be plenty for each of the boys. Says not having any money would teach them it's value.
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#8 of 38 Old 03-04-2015, 02:59 PM
 
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HM- ex is being unreasonable. For example today DS went to target and got a new thing/remote/nunchuck for the WII and some candy/gum total $30. He might also spend a couple dollars this week on soda or coffee and snacks at school.
I bought him some early easter candy, pencil lead and a shamrock shake from mcd's.

I live in a major city and things in general cost more here so its quite possible you ex isn't totally in touch with reality??

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#9 of 38 Old 03-04-2015, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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LOL, Zebra, when has my ex ever been in touch with reality????
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#10 of 38 Old 03-04-2015, 03:54 PM
 
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Just heard back from the ex, he thinks $5 a week would be plenty for each of the boys. Says not having any money would teach them it's value.
Wow, he sounds like a lovely, generous person. Can't imagine why your marriage to him didn't last.

I think that kids learn to handle money by having some of it to manage. My dh is better with this with the kids than I am. He makes them reconcile their accounts before he puts their next allotment in.

We see it as part of life skills, and we just keep adding stuff when they get the hang of something.
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#11 of 38 Old 03-05-2015, 10:36 AM
 
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Huh. My kids don't get regular "pocket money" nor do they get an allowance. Two are adults--one living at home while working/doing some school/EMT volunteering, one a freshman at a state school/working pt there. The younger two are (almost) 17 and 14. The older is a junior in HS, and gets free lunch. The younger is HSed. Both of my younger kids work here and there, usually odd jobs during the school year, and some more formal jobs in the summer. They're pretty good about saving money. Both have done sports this year, and I usually give them money for dinner out after games/meets (they go on the bus with the team, and usually stop for fast food). I pay for school stuff, some clothing, etc, but otherwise they pay for their own stuff. I also treat them to things (like when DD qualified for states for swimming, I bought her a Tshirt from the meet), so I'm not a hard-nose about it, but something just never has set right about allowances, you know?

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#12 of 38 Old 04-02-2015, 11:14 AM
 
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He makes them reconcile their accounts before he puts their next allotment in.
I love this idea! I might adopt it myself.
My DD is almost 13, and she gets $100/month (but $20 gets deposited into her savings.) Since she turned 11, we've been giving allowance at the beginning of the month so she has to learn to budget.

Her allowance isn't tied to chores, but she can earn more by doing some of *my* chores.

I'm most interested in what other teens/tweens are responsible for paying for. Out of her allowance, we expect DD to buy:
  • running around with friends and snacks while there
  • all the little "I wants" she used to beg me for while we were doing errands, like bath fizzies and tchotchkes.
  • Pool pass
  • Six Flags pass
  • clothes over and above what I deem "needs," eg Uggs.
  • makeup
  • candy and treats I don't buy for the house
  • music and games


At this point, I pay for:
  • school clothes/shoes
  • camps/music lessons/theater participation
  • toiletries
  • school lunch (she brown-bags)

As she matures, I will move items to her purchase category, and increase her allowance accordingly. I got my system from Mary Hunt's Debt-Proof Your Kids, but she is very vague on what kids are expected to pay for themselves.

One note about school lunches: when my mom included my school lunch $$$ in my allowance was when my diet went completely off the rails. I wanted more cash for fun, so I bought a candy bar and diet soda every school day for years, and pocketed the rest. I would rather provide all the nutritious food DD wants until she leaves home.
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#13 of 38 Old 04-02-2015, 11:24 AM
 
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One note about school lunches: when my mom included my school lunch $$$ in my allowance was when my diet went completely off the rails. I wanted more cash for fun, so I bought a candy bar and diet soda every school day for years, and pocketed the rest. I would rather provide all the nutritious food DD wants until she leaves home.

I did something similar as well! I haven't thought about that in years. I did not receive an allowance, nor did I have any way to earn money. My parents didn't buy things like movie tickets or a t-shirt beyond the very basics. I usually starved myself and kept all my lunch money because it was the only way to get ahold of any kind of cash. Once a week or so I would actually buy something for a buck. Looking back as an adult, it really had a tremendous effect on me.



I've had a difficult time figuring out allowances for my 12 year old middle schooler so I just haven't yet. I buy school lunches twice a week for her. She does have the ability to bank the days and use another week if she chooses to. The other days she takes a pack lunch. At this point in time, I've been providing some spending money on as need basis depending on what it is for. She can choose to baby sit for extra cash which she does do.

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#14 of 38 Old 04-02-2015, 07:24 PM
 
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Lunch costs $2.50, but on pizza day ds#1 will buy extra lol. I leave it up to them if they want to save money and pack their own lunch, and that is what ds#2 does. Ds#3 (who is 10) only gets $10 every 2 weeks which goes on toys and candy or computer games.
It sounds like about $12-15 of that money is going just to lunch (or has the potential to go just to lunch). So, really, you're only giving them $5-8/week anyways. If your ex would prefer, you could start giving them money for lunch separate from "pocket money". Kind of pointless, though, I agree that he's out of touch and being unreasonable.

Ugh... I don't even remember where I got money for lunch. I just remember that at 14 the cafeteria had no options that didn't make me sick so I just didn't eat the entire school year and passed out in last class of the day. And still got an A in it so no one cared. Which is totally irrelevant, this thread just brought back how screwed up I was as a teenager.

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#15 of 38 Old 04-02-2015, 08:41 PM
 
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I haven't thought about that in years. I did not receive an allowance, nor did I have any way to earn money. My parents didn't buy things like movie tickets or a t-shirt beyond the very basics. I usually starved myself and kept all my lunch money because it was the only way to get ahold of any kind of cash.
lol, me too, though we were a brown-bag family, so I didn't starve. I was only able to pocket the 55 cents a week that the school charged for its milk program. And yes, the feeling of disempowerment and frustration over not having any pocket money without resorting to dishonesty affected me deeply. I still feel guilty about my discretionary purchases and "hide" them by paying out of a personal (non-joint) slush fund account that I have to keep for that purpose. Dh humours me, knowing how neurotic I am about spending money.

Seriously, parents, make sure your kids have spending money. Don't let them end up like me.

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#16 of 38 Old 04-03-2015, 09:41 AM
 
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We do not give any sort of pocket money as a freebie. Everything must be earned but we make sure to offer many opportunities and to pay well for the work. For example, keeping an eye on the little ones can earn them $5 per hour and cleaning a bathroom gets them $2-5 depending on which bathroom and how dirty it is. I know of some parents who offer earning opportunities but pay next to nothing, like $1 for an hour of yardwork.

The big reason I don't give money without work being done first is that it's not realistic. In the real world money must be earned. I don't want the kids to get in the habit of expecting something for nothing. It would also get really expensive for us since we have a large family. Giving each kid $100/month would run us around $8500 per year which is a silly amount to hand out for kids to spend on random stuff. I wouldn't feel right giving money just to older kids or basing the amount on age, I like to keep things fair and avoid animosity between siblings.

All that said, necessities are always paid for. The kids are never expected to buy their own clothes (but can pay the difference between a reasonably priced item and a designer item they would prefer). If they're invited to a party we buy the gift although if they start being invited to more parties this might change.

We've been pleasantly surprised with how motivated the kids can be to earn when they really want something. The oldest kids can easily earn $40/week if they really want to.
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#17 of 38 Old 04-03-2015, 04:21 PM
 
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Thank goodness all mine have jobs because I am terrible at remembering and never have cash, and then it's all you didn't pay me last week!
As far as budgeting and saving goes, I'm finding no connections other than the nature of the child. DD2 is an amazing saver, but I do see anxiety and hesitation around spending. Little who is 9 is a good saver, and incredibly generous. One day on the subway he gave a $2 coin ( we have those in Canada) to a busker, and another time he said he wished he could give a homeless person a dollar, but only had a five dollar bill and was so grateful when I found a dollar. He has money in the bank and is allowed to spend money on whatever he wants, and saving is completely optional. I'm not sure i believe the 'you get $20 and have to save X and donate X and the rest is yours' i know that whole Barbara Collaraso philosophy, i just don't think it teaches kids to be generous or savers. Free choice and leading by example I beleive teaches.
DS 1 who is 13 has a harder time, money burns a hole in his pocket, his wants outstrip his means regularly, but, that said, if obsessive art supply shopping is what he wants, I'm not complaining.
The thing about money management is you have to have money to manage, and scarcity doesn't necessarily teach budgeting, again nature of the child, some kids just want/need more than others.
Great conversation though thanks thread starter.
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#18 of 38 Old 04-03-2015, 05:01 PM
 
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Thank goodness all mine have jobs because I am terrible at remembering and never have cash, and then it's all you didn't pay me last week!
I realize it's not an issue for you, since you're not doing an allowance, but there are two possible solutions for this. One is to have a ledger system, whereby you create a "Bank of Mom" in a paper ledger. You write down each week as allowance is allocated, and when your child takes cash from you to go to a movie, or gets you to buy him an iTunes gift card online, or throws a bag of chips in the grocery cart for himself, you debit his account for the appropriate amount. All entries are dated, so if you forget for several weeks it's easy to play catch-up. Also, the ledger creates a really great tool for kids to see how their saving and spending habits are playing out.

The second option is to get your kids debit cards on their own bank accounts, and set up an automatic transfer once a month from your account to theirs. Again, the bank statement (whether on-line or otherwise) is a great long-term learning tool. Far more so than a piggy bank or a wallet!

With my kids we switched from paper ledger to bank account at the age when they began spending more on their own, without me around.

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#20 of 38 Old 04-03-2015, 06:44 PM
 
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The big reason I don't give money without work being done first is that it's not realistic. In the real world money must be earned. I don't want the kids to get in the habit of expecting something for nothing.

I'm glad that your system works for you. For years, I was a stay at home mom, so this line of logic doesn't really hold for me. I did nothing that earned money, yet I had money to spend. Now, the amount of money that I earn is so small compared to my husband's salary that I'm very thankful he doesn't share your views.


My kids don't get paid for chores, yet they are ALWAYS willing to help. They make dinner, garden, run errands and so on. The way we see it, contributing to the running of the home is something you do because you are part of the family, and having a share of the money for your needs (and a few wants) is also something you get because you are part of the family.


I'm very comfortable giving our kids different amounts. They have different expenses. One commutes to community college 40 minutes away. They know they get different amounts, and they are fine with it. Being "fair" isn't the same as "giving everyone the same thing."


My deal as a parent is that I will make sure that they have everything they need, and some of what they want. Just because someone else has something (even if that person is your sibling) it doesn't mean that you need it, and wanting something *just* because some one else has it is path to never being happy. I'd had this stance for years, so it was a concept they had already made their peace with before we started having them budget for many of their own expenses each month.
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#21 of 38 Old 04-03-2015, 06:55 PM
 
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I love this idea! I might adopt it myself.
My DD is almost 13, and she gets $100/month (but $20 gets deposited into her savings.) Since she turned 11, we've been giving allowance at the beginning of the month so she has to learn to budget.

Her allowance isn't tied to chores, but she can earn more by doing some of *my* chores.

I'm most interested in what other teens/tweens are responsible for paying for. Out of her allowance, we expect DD to buy:
  • running around with friends and snacks while there
  • all the little "I wants" she used to beg me for while we were doing errands, like bath fizzies and tchotchkes.
  • Pool pass
  • Six Flags pass
  • clothes over and above what I deem "needs," eg Uggs.
  • makeup
  • candy and treats I don't buy for the house
  • music and games


At this point, I pay for:
  • school clothes/shoes
  • camps/music lessons/theater participation
  • toiletries
  • school lunch (she brown-bags)

As she matures, I will move items to her purchase category, and increase her allowance accordingly. I got my system from Mary Hunt's Debt-Proof Your Kids, but she is very vague on what kids are expected to pay for themselves.

One note about school lunches: when my mom included my school lunch $$$ in my allowance was when my diet went completely off the rails. I wanted more cash for fun, so I bought a candy bar and diet soda every school day for years, and pocketed the rest. I would rather provide all the nutritious food DD wants until she leaves home.
I think that's a fantastic idea!

My boys think I'm a walking ATM machine and they are really slow at if they even bother doing chores.
However I do bank money weekly for them into their accounts that is untouchable and I pay for all their
needs and quite often their wants.

I have recently pulled rank on them as they want monthly ph top ups and I need a hand around the house
to free up time for myself.

Whilst there was initial resistance that changed as the phones ran out of credit

Great post! Thank you for sharing.
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#22 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 08:08 AM
 
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I'm glad that your system works for you. For years, I was a stay at home mom, so this line of logic doesn't really hold for me. I did nothing that earned money, yet I had money to spend. Now, the amount of money that I earn is so small compared to my husband's salary that I'm very thankful he doesn't share your views.


My kids don't get paid for chores, yet they are ALWAYS willing to help. They make dinner, garden, run errands and so on. The way we see it, contributing to the running of the home is something you do because you are part of the family, and having a share of the money for your needs (and a few wants) is also something you get because you are part of the family.


I'm very comfortable giving our kids different amounts. They have different expenses. One commutes to community college 40 minutes away. They know they get different amounts, and they are fine with it. Being "fair" isn't the same as "giving everyone the same thing."


My deal as a parent is that I will make sure that they have everything they need, and some of what they want. Just because someone else has something (even if that person is your sibling) it doesn't mean that you need it, and wanting something *just* because some one else has it is path to never being happy. I'd had this stance for years, so it was a concept they had already made their peace with before we started having them budget for many of their own expenses each month.
I've been a stay at home mom for more than a decade. In our family it's not that my husband has money which he generously shares with me but that the money he earns is our money which we decide together how to use. I work hard as a mom therefore I have money for my needs and wants. If our kids choose not to do work they will not have money for their wants (we teach them that all children are entitled to have their needs met).

Every family is different and each child is different. We have a few kids who will happily help out and a few others who will sit around and do nothing unless they are motivated and a few who are still too young to really help. What works for our family is what works for our family, exactly what we do probably isn't right for any other family out there and that's ok.

I understand why you give out money differently for your kids who have varying expenses. I don't think that would be right for our family. We would prefer that kids who have more expenses realize that more expenses equals more work.
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#23 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 08:35 AM
 
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We do not give any sort of pocket money as a freebie. Everything must be earned ...
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the money he earns is our money which we decide together how to use. I work hard as a mom therefore I have money for my needs and wants. If our kids choose not to do work they will not have money for their wants
So if you developed MS, or went back to school to upgrade your skills, and were no longer able to put hours a day into the running of the household, would your dh stop treating his money as "our money"? I doubt it. I'm guessing that he thinks of the money he earns as "our money" because he views your marriage as a partnership where resources are shared.

Personally I don't see why children, who are every bit as much a part of the family, shouldn't also be part of this sharing. I don't think ensuring that they share in the family resources teaches them the habit of thinking that you can "get something for nothing." It teaches them that families are a cooperative unit built on love and support rather than economics.

(And really, if you want to look at it from a purely economic standpoint, by the time your children are old enough to do chores you've already spent years teaching them that they are entitled to get lots for nothing: they've been getting love, food, shelter, clothing, education and health care from the moment they were born for doing nothing other than being alive. How is telling them they have to unload the dishwasher in order to get money for a pack of Skittles going to unteach that?)

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#24 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 09:14 AM
 
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Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post
We would prefer that kids who have more expenses realize that more expenses equals more work.
In her case, the greater expenses are more work -- she finds the drive exhausting. Due to the demands of her school work and the fatigue of the commute, we've come to the conclusion that the right amount of work outside the house for her is about 4 hours a week, but with weeks off to study for finals and finish up big projects/papers. So rather than working for money, she volunteers at a not-for-profit once a week. (it provides her with many of the benefits teens get from part time jobs, but with fewer hours and less pressure).


We really prefer our kids to be developing their life skills and ability to run their own lives at this point. We don't expect them to earn a living while being full time students. I think it's unrealistic to expect to get paid for cleaning up after yourself or making yourself or your family food to eat. No body gets paid for that stuff.


Also, with teen girls, I think there is a very blurry line between "needs" and "wants." Some sort of shampoo is a "need", but there are a variety of hair care products and at some point, they become "wants." I think it's good for one of my DDs to think through how much she wants to spend on hair products compared to how much she wants left for entertainment. Before we developed this system, she really didn't realize how much certain things costs. She's become better at using the library for DVDs and books since she has to make choices.


For my other DD, it's easy. She doesn't care how she looks, so uses cheap products and spends more money on entertainment (often at book stores).
I think if we always divide purchases neatly into "needs" and "wants" we keep our kids from really thinking about things. In truth, it's all just choices. I think it is more fair to my kids to have control over how they see these things rather than having them driven by my personal tastes.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif


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#25 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 10:45 AM
 
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On the issue of "greater expenses equal greater work..." here is a scenario my family had to deal with. My eldest dd studied violin for many years. Initially with me (free), then once she outgrew my expertise with her grandmother (free), and then when she needed a more advance teacher with a woman 90 minutes away who charged $40/hour. My youngest dd was studying piano at the same time with a teacher in the same city, who also charged $40/hour. All of which seems very equal, and it was ...

Until my elder dd's violin teacher had to quit teaching suddenly due to a cancer diagnosis, and the next-nearest teacher capable of teaching at her level was 8-9 hours away, necessitating $200 in gas, $200 spent on two overnights at a hotel, $100+ for meals away from home and $75 an hour. We did a 2-hour lesson every couple of weeks. It was very expensive, both in terms of money, and from the standpoint of time and inconvenience for the whole family.

Elder dd was already working about ten times harder on her instrument than younger dd was. She had decided she wanted to make music her career, was extremely advanced and desperately in need of skilled instruction.

I don't think anything would have been gained by requiring her, because she'd accidentally chosen the instrument for which fate had intervened to rob her of a teacher at a crucial point in her learning, to begin doing many times more chores than her younger sister. She was not an idiot: she did not need to be worked to the bone to realize that her violin stuff was costing our family a ton in time and money. Because we take an open, collaborative approach to making decisions about sharing family resources, she knew that due to circumstances she was consuming a disproportionate share -- and she was incredibly grateful for the fact that no one begrudged her any of it. She has grown into an extremely frugal, hard-working young adult who has capitalized greatly on that difficult and costly period in her teens.

Miranda
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#26 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 11:25 AM
 
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Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post
So if you developed MS, or went back to school to upgrade your skills, and were no longer able to put hours a day into the running of the household, would your dh stop treating his money as "our money"? I doubt it. I'm guessing that he thinks of the money he earns as "our money" because he views your marriage as a partnership where resources are shared.

Personally I don't see why children, who are every bit as much a part of the family, shouldn't also be part of this sharing. I don't think ensuring that they share in the family resources teaches them the habit of thinking that you can "get something for nothing." It teaches them that families are a cooperative unit built on love and support rather than economics.

(And really, if you want to look at it from a purely economic standpoint, by the time your children are old enough to do chores you've already spent years teaching them that they are entitled to get lots for nothing: they've been getting love, food, shelter, clothing, education and health care from the moment they were born for doing nothing other than being alive. How is telling them they have to unload the dishwasher in order to get money for a pack of Skittles going to unteach that?)

Miranda
If I were ill or otherwise doing something that precluded useful work nothing would change. If I decided to sit around and do nothing all day I would expect my husband to change his tune on money being shared nice I would no longer be putting in a fair effort. It's like folding towels. I don't expect a five year old to be able to fold them as neatly or as quickly as a ten year old but as long as they both do their best they would each earn the same amount.

Again, every family is different but in our family we don't give the children equal financial footing with my husband and I. It's just not the way our family runs.

As I said before we teach our children they are entitled to their needs. This is appropriate clothing, a safe place to live, necessary food, an education, and care when they are sick. West feel it would be in their best interest to give them an entitlement attitude where they feel they should be given their wants without work. I've seen this in many children and it's not what I want for my own. Maybe it makes me mean in your eyes but I don't believe my children are entitled to things simply because we can afford them or that they deserve a certain share of the money we have, those things are for my husband and I to decide in what we believe is heir best interest.
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#27 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 11:29 AM
 
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On the issue of "greater expenses equal greater work..." here is a scenario my family had to deal with. My eldest dd studied violin for many years. Initially with me (free), then once she outgrew my expertise with her grandmother (free), and then when she needed a more advance teacher with a woman 90 minutes away who charged $40/hour. My youngest dd was studying piano at the same time with a teacher in the same city, who also charged $40/hour. All of which seems very equal, and it was ...

Until my elder dd's violin teacher had to quit teaching suddenly due to a cancer diagnosis, and the next-nearest teacher capable of teaching at her level was 8-9 hours away, necessitating $200 in gas, $200 spent on two overnights at a hotel, $100+ for meals away from home and $75 an hour. We did a 2-hour lesson every couple of weeks. It was very expensive, both in terms of money, and from the standpoint of time and inconvenience for the whole family.

Elder dd was already working about ten times harder on her instrument than younger dd was. She had decided she wanted to make music her career, was extremely advanced and desperately in need of skilled instruction.

I don't think anything would have been gained by requiring her, because she'd accidentally chosen the instrument for which fate had intervened to rob her of a teacher at a crucial point in her learning, to begin doing many times more chores than her younger sister. She was not an idiot: she did not need to be worked to the bone to realize that her violin stuff was costing our family a ton in time and money. Because we take an open, collaborative approach to making decisions about sharing family resources, she knew that due to circumstances she was consuming a disproportionate share -- and she was incredibly grateful for the fact that no one begrudged her any of it. She has grown into an extremely frugal, hard-working young adult who has capitalized greatly on that difficult and costly period in her teens.

Miranda
I think this falls under the umbrella of education which I believe children are entitled to. It's very different from a child who wants to go to the movies every weekend or wear expensive clothes.
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#28 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 01:50 PM
 
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I think this falls under the umbrella of education which I believe children are entitled to. It's very different from a child who wants to go to the movies every weekend or wear expensive clothes.
Ah, you said "kids who have greater expenses." I use the term expense in the common sense of "something spent to attain a goal or accomplish a purpose," not for discretionary entertainment, diversions, capricious purchases and such. In my bookkeeping/working-world lexicon an expense is a justifiable expenditure made in service of some project. My misunderstanding.

Still, we have plenty of examples in our family where the desire for discretionary purchases has varied a lot. For instance, my then-painfully-shy teenaged son was never interested in doing anything with friends, while my middle dd was keen on whatever social experiences our little town offered. I don't think it would make sense to insist that she do a few hours of chores for the privilege of spending an evening with her friends while ds had no such expectation upon him since he was happy to cower in the family room on the computer. Why should he get a pass on chores?

What I don't agree with is the simplistic contingency between housework and discretionary spending and the way that contingency is being used as a behavioural reinforcer. I think families are built with relationships, not behaviourism.

Imagine that you actually sat around all day doing nothing: obviously your husband would be concerned and he would want to fix the situation. But don't you think that his reaction would be more along the lines of "Something is wrong with my wife!" or "Something is very wrong with our relationship!" ... and he would try to address the root causes and help solve the problem? I highly doubt that he would simply block your access to money for discretionary spending and figure that would put pressure on you to start doing the housework.

With my kids I look at it the same way. If they aren't willing to pitch in and help out with family work, we have a problem, and it's not something I'm going to fix by doling out or withholding money. It's indicative of something wrong inside them, or something wrong between us. I don't want to use money to try to fix those things.

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#29 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 02:51 PM
 
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I see what you're saying but I don't think kids wanting to hang out and do nothing as opposed to helping out means something is wrong with them. Some people are just naturally more likely to jump up and lend a hand while others tend to take the path of least resistance and will wait for a reason to do something.

I'm totally ok with our decision to link pocket money with work. I don't think children should be given money for non necessities unless they have done something to earn it. Our kids certainly receive gifts, even gifts for no reason, but if they decide they want something I want them to be in the mindset that they will have to earn it rather than simply feel entitled to it just because.
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#30 of 38 Old 04-04-2015, 03:05 PM
 
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Some people are just naturally more likely to jump up and lend a hand while others tend to take the path of least resistance and will wait for a reason to do something.
To be clear, my ds has always helped out around the house. That's an expectation here. The point is was trying to make is that it's an expectation in our family even if you don't want money to go to a movie with friends.

Just want to be fair to my ds.

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