I read an article today in Family Circle Magazine about ways to be a better parent or something like that and one of the points was to Take Finances Seriously. It went on to say "plenty of parents make it a point to never discuss money in front of the kids, believe they need to be shielded. A recent survey by USAA found that 79% of all high school grads heading off to college have never had a budget conversation with their parents." This is my story, for sure. Not only did we never discuss finances or budgets but because of my parents lack of openness about money, I thought we were rich! I always had nice clothes, I got a car at 16, we went out to eat often, we had a pool (the very epitome of wealth in Texas), received tons and tons of gifts not only at Christmas but at just about every holiday. I received everything I ever asked for, quite frankly. Little did I know that my parents were slowly drowning in debt because of these luxuries. And because it's all legacy - since they never had financial guidance...they weren't equipped to pass on sound financial guidance.
Cut to Kevin's family. At the ripe age of 5, the Sturm kids earned allowances by completing basic household chores. By 16 they all had checking accounts and before they set off to college they had a credit card that they were responsible for paying off monthly. OK?! Is it any wonder that i came into this marriage in debt and my husband with a substantial savings? I've asked the Parents Sturm how they had the wisdom to talk about money with their kids from such an early age. They said they read a lot. I total appreciate that! They aggressively worked toward teaching their children about responsible money management and those efforts have paid off. Literally. Ha.
So the next time the convo of money comes up and you feel the urge to beat around the perverbial money bush try something new and actually announce how much money you're actually talking about! You might find that it's downright liberating. Ok, enough about monies for today.