My son and I sat down for a serious discussion a few weeks back. He wanted to start getting a weekly allowance. I happily agreed but explained that he’d have to do jobs around the house to earn it. I rattled off a few ideas and he excitedly agreed and was a busy little bee that afternoon.
A few weeks later the novelty wore off and I was faced with a tough choice – should I keep giving him his allowance and spend countless minutes nagging him to do his chores or should I simply withhold his allowance because they haven’t been done?
I never wanted to be a parent who was too tough on her children but to me, his relationship with money is being set now and will affect him for the rest of his life. I am in a unique position to teach him to value money, even the random 5c pieces he sometimes finds on the floor.
I had no awareness of money when I was young. We didn’t have any apparently but I didn’t notice. We were never offered an allowance and the chores we did around the house were done for nothing. We lived there too so we had to contribute.
I eventually decided to stop paying him his allowance but I decided not to make it a punishment. I calmly explained that he hadn’t helped out around the house so he wouldn’t be getting it this week but as soon as he started to help out again I would pay him his allowance. I left him to digest the news and with no nagging required he quietly tidied his room and picked up the papers that had fallen out of our recycle bin.