Mom, I need those jeans. All my friends are wearing them and my friends will make fun of me if I don’t. Despite what some teenagers think, parents aren’t made of money. You may be struggling with how to address your teenager’s big spending behavior. The following ideas may give you the help you need to do exactly that.
As a parent, you try to teach your children to use money wisely. Then, when children hit the teenage years, they seem to forget everything you’ve taught them. This may be partly due to peer pressure and trying to find their place in the world. However, no matter how much they think they need the newest in name-brand things, sometimes it’s simply not within the family budget.
Include your teen in discussions about family finances. Let them see how much income the family brings in, how much monthly expenses are, the amount put into saving, and how much is left as discretionary funds. Once they understand where the money goes, it may help them realize that you’re not trying to make their life difficult; you simply don’t have the extra to buy them everything they want.
Give them a specific amount of money each month to pay for their needs. Show them the importance of setting up a budget to ensure they have money when they need it rather than spending it as soon as they get it. Help them make wise decisions about the money they have access to but don’t let them think you’re there with your pocketbook open whenever they blow their budget and run out of money.
Suggest they get a part-time job to cover those items which aren’t in the family budget. Have them earn the money they want by doing extra chores. Help them learn that you have to work to bring in money to your household and they will have to do the same thing in the future. The sooner they learn the way the world works in relation to finances the better off they’ll be.
Ask your teenager to help you make a menu plan and grocery list for the next week’s meals. Encourage them to go with you to the store. Show them how to use coupons or comparison shop so they get the best price for the items on your list. This will teach them how to do the same thing when they’re responsible for buying their own things.
Don’t forget to teach your teen to save. They’ll thank you for teaching them about how to handle money after they’re out on their own. Of course, until that happens, you can expect then to ask you to help fund whatever they want. Being proactive by expecting your teen to use their own money may be your best bet on how to address your teenager’s big spending behavior. [More Information On This Topic]