Why I Borrow Money From My Kids.. And I’m OK With It

It seemed like a simple enough post online.. wise guy dad.. and some money fun with his kid:

“borrowed $3 bucks from 10 yo… when she asked me for it back I asked her for the $200,000 it takes to raise a kid and told her now she only owes me $199,997”

But it set off an interesting debate online… should I be including my kids in money talks, what things cost, what THEY cost for that matter… or not.

One wrote: It’s one thing to teach your kids about finances and what things cost, it’s another to make them feel like they owe you simply for existing.

Another wrote: I think parents who remind their children how much money we spend (are) terrible… I have have never borrowed money from them and never will…

For the most part people understood that I was just joking.. although I did really borrow the three bucks from her and did really tell her how much it costs to raise kids.

One wrote: If you aren’t teaching your kids what things cost, you are setting them up for failure…

Another wrote of her own 7 year old: that it’s about “learning the difference between wants and needs, as well as the value of time, efforts, and money.”

I guess you know where I stand by now. All joking aside..

We are doing a disservice to our kids if we don’t teach them about money and borrowing and mortgages and spending and bills and payments and savings… and here are my reasons why:

#1 kids who know what things cost have a better basic understanding of what money is and why it’s important.

#2 kids who know what things cost have a better respect for the idea that things aren’t free in life. ((Yes, I have them use the little price scanners in Target to see what the price is))

#3 kids who know what things cost can then understand the idea of savings… sometimes you need to wait and save to get something you really want.

#4 perhaps most important, kids who know what things cost maybe just maybe have a better idea of the sacrifices their parents make each and every day. Yes us. All of us.

By the way.. for the record.. I gave the three bucks back. I always do. And no I didn’t give her interest. Just the three bucks.. it’s the cost of doing business and living under my roof. Let me know what YOU think:


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About dadmissions

author of Dadmissions. surrounded by a wife and two girls... and a dog named Cupcake
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8 Responses to Why I Borrow Money From My Kids.. And I’m OK With It

  1. Interesting stuff, I think you are right in exposing kids to the costs but not making them feel it is there fault (which I don’t think you did), all too often we let kids think everything is rosy and then BAM they are hit by reality and fail to cope.

  2. You are spot on, IMO. Shielding our kids from truths–in any form of degree–leads to kids unprepared to see how all the moving pieces of the world fit together … and thus how to, early on, begin testing moving them and growing skill doing so.

  3. jdawgswords says:

    this is a complicated issue…the thing is being honest and respectful…you said you would give it back and you did…they probably ain’t gonna get the money thing until they have a job and bills…focus on being honest and respectful…that’s tough enough

  4. elmar61sol says:

    Sat.we had a visit from our 7YO grandson. I like to give small gifts for no reason and I gave him a stuffed toy and book from the Kohl’s Cares line, he liked it. Later we were watching TV and something about money/ stuff was on ,I don’t remember the context. He said ” It’s always about money “, sounding like a 40 YO . I responded, ” You can’t get stuff without money”. He then said ” Who needs money ? ” I said, “OK give me back the toy and book and I’ll return them and get my money ” Respectfully, he said “no please” and we both laughed. I believe both children and adults have difficulty sometimes unless they are paying.

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