Today in the supermarket I heard this lady yelling across the store as it would appear she was telling her child to get back. The child ran to the toy section and was also shouting on how they did have this toy item at the store. Still talking very loudly the mother then said they aren’t going to buy it anyways and how she has no money. The kid starts whining and the mom asks what the price was. Apparently it was like $70 for a toy gun of sorts.
The mom then went on a rant to the child on how there is no way they are spending $70 on the item and that she is a poor mom. She repeated that a couple of times. It doesn’t really sink in with the child though as he essentially just pouts and continues to try and convince the mom to buy it.
It makes me think how if you are trying to teach people to be financially responsible or sensitive to spending their money in a wise way it’s not enough to just tell them. I feel everyone needs to experience it to a certain extent to truly understand it. That doesn’t mean like here you would put the child in the streets as an example. But instead of just saying like the family is poor I would imagine it would be more effective to actually stop buying luxury stuff period in all categories and have the child realize that they need to do something to help.
If I was the child, without that I would imagine someone saying to me that we are poor would simply mean like I have to wait for the parents to make more money. Instead, I know for myself when I felt empowered to help the situation then my perspective changed. Like there, it was me who had to change something to be able to buy that toy and so taking the responsibility of being in the position of being “poor” made me take it more seriously while motivating me to do things to get out of that situation.
They say kids are smarter than you think and in many ways with finance I feel we often don’t give kids enough opportunities to try and be the financially responsible ones. Less nagging and more opportunities to change one’s financial perspective.