Kids and Debt

Money management – a cornerstone of business and life in general, but how many of our kids really “get it” until we toss them out into the waters of independence? I met too many women in their twenties who had no clue how to handle their personal finances during my management career. I would never want my girls to grow up that naive and my husband felt the same way. We shopping bagswanted them to know how to handle their money and responsibilities and to learn this in an organic way. Time will tell if we have been successful. Continue reading

Equal Isn’t Always Fair

Six SiblingsThis sounds like gibberish doesn’t it? Of course equal would be fair.  After all, fair is fair, right?

Not always, and practically never with children; not unless you are talking about big money. If you are talking about inheritances, money for college, etc., then yes….be scrupulously equal in what you give each sibling. Even take that equality to a fault. But for everything else, another set of rules apply, depending on what each child needs at a given time.

Here’s an example: You have taken your infant and your toddler to the store with you and the toddler has been extremely well-behaved and asks for a treat; let’s say a frozen yogurt! You think, “Well, that would be a nice treat for us to share and a way to reward him for his great behavior,” so you say yes. Are you going to give your infant some too? Of course not. Wrong reward for the wrong age.

Have you been unequal? Yes.  Have you been unfair? No. You have been appropriate.

Allowances are a typical area of conversation for “fair” and “equal” to come up and you need to be prepared.  Should children of differing ages have the same amount of allowance? Of course not; a five-year old does not need the same amount of money as a ten-year old. A ten-year old does not need the same amount as a fifteen year old.  Continue reading