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Should kids should get an allowance for doing household chores?

Question

Do you think that kids should get an allowance for doing household chores?

Answer

Kids should not be paid for helping out with household chores. A five-year-old can set the table, preteens can learn how to wash clothes, and older children can mow the lawn. This is their way of contributing to family life. Chores also communicate that taking care of routine tasks is not the responsibility of the parents, but is a job done by everyone in the family.

Allowances teach an important lesson about money management. Most children have no sense of the economic value of things until they have to use their own money to purchase items. For that reason, an allowance at some point in elementary school is very helpful, but I wouldn’t connect it with family chores.

Question

Our youngest son will be entering college at the same time that my husband and I will both be retiring. We will not be able to offer him the same financial support enjoyed by his three older siblings. However, he expects us to pay for college, which we can only do if we take money out of our retirement savings. How can we explain this to him?

Question

I love my grandkids, but I dread it when they stay for the weekend. They are spoiled rotten and speak to me in ways that would have gotten them a spanking in my day.

I’ve tried to stay quiet, but feel I have an obligation to say something to their parents.

Answer

When the children are cared for by their parents, you should say nothing unless your advice is requested. However, when the children interact with you or stay at your house, then you have a responsibility to enforce your rules.

In fairness to the children, you should speak first with their parents and carefully explain your expectations and how you intend to deal with any misbehavior. The parents can then make an informed decision as to their comfort level with your approach. Before the children visit, both you and their parents need to talk with the kids.

I would expect that the grandkids’ behaviors would improve significantly once they understand the rules and consequences at your house.

Answer

Shame on your son for his selfish behavior!  Tell him he should feel grateful for all that you have been able to do for him over the years rather than whining about being treated differently than his siblings.

Be assertive with your son on this issue. You’ll be teaching him a valuable lesson about gratitude and entitlements.

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