Originally posted on Money with Merne’s Facebook Page on March 3, 2017:
What kind of financial example are you setting? What are you subconsciously “teaching” others, especially your children? Do they see you whip out the plastic all the time?
I keep forgetting how kids are sponges. My family’s splurge area is eating out. When we finish a meal my son will want to leave, but we tell him we can’t go until we pay. He sees me swipe that little plastic card. Recently, he found an old zero-balance gift card laying out and he started walking around the house saying “Pay! Pay! Have to pay!” Wow.
I want to make sure that he learns that a credit card is NOT just a magical way to get money from nothing. I want to teach him that it’s a smart way to get free stuff for using money that we have and have worked for and that we manage carefully. Not a way to buy things we can’t afford. If we can’t afford it, we don’t buy it!
Make sure you talk to kids about money. Don’t deal with it behind closed doors. They need to see good examples so they will be set up success in the future!