Why “We Can’t Afford It” Is Not The Best Answer (and iPad Mini Giveaway)

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[This is a guest post by Shannon Ryan.  Make sure you read all the way to the end as there's an awesome surprise (hint: iPad Mini giveaway) waiting for you.]

The words “I want” accompanied by a tantrum loud enough to be heard miles away is every parent’s nightmare. Sometimes we agree to buy the toy, so our child stops being kidzilla and returns to our normal, sweet child. Other times we stay firm in our decision to not buy the toy, but we forget the most important part — the why behind the “no”. It may not seem like a big deal, but our children need to understand the “why” so they don’t wind-up feeling deprived.

I’ve been a Certified Financial Planner for more than 20 years and I know the high price of a so-called deprived childhood. In most of these situations, these children were not deprived, but in their mind, they were. They were told “no” without a real explanation repeatedly. After a lifetime of being told “no”, when they become adults armed with a credit card, they tell themselves “yes” every time.

Please do not misunderstand me. I am not suggesting you buy your children everything they want, so they never feel deprived. That is definitely not the answer. Now you’ve gone too far in the other direction, and your kids feel entitled to everything they want. So what is a parent supposed to do?

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