Jul 8, 2015

What Lasts Longer Than A Lollipop?

Nate has fifty cents burning a hole in his pocket. When we went to the store, he desperately wanted to spend it on a gourmet lollipop. But I said, "No."

He thought this was unjust. "I should be able to spend my money however I want."

I pointed out that this was a myth. Adults don't spend their money however they want. Did he think Daddy wanted to spend his money on the electric bill?

Well, no, he acknowledged, but that's because Daddy was a grown up. He, Nate, was just a kid and had no bills. Therefore, Hello, Lollipop!

So I launched into a lengthy discussion about how, as his parents, it was our job to teach him the skills he needs as an adult. How we were trying to instill in him the idea NOW that money is a tool to be used and he should manage it wisely. This way, he won't have to learn these lessons as an adult.

"See," I explained, "You can spend that fifty cents on a sucker that lasts you thirty seconds, or you can save it and earn more money and put it toward something with more lasting value."

He thought about this for a minute and then said, "Ok. I'll wait. Then when we go to Dollar Tree you can give me a dollar and I can buy some gum."

When I started laughing, he was indignant. "But gum lasts longer than a lollipop! And that's what you SAID! You said, 'Buy something that lasts longer!' So you have no right to be laughing right now."

He never did admit that he didn't get the point.

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