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AIBU or is my mum, re pocket money for trip?

(110 Posts)
loopyluna Sat 16-Mar-13 10:01:16

DS, 13, is really, really bad with money. He gets £5/ month pocket money, his phone contract and youth club fees (about £6/ month) from us. The pocket money is no-strings attached and ge can "earn" more by doing extra chores (he never does.)
He spends it all on sweets and energy drinks after school. angry

We're going to Florida in April so my DDs (younger than DS) both decided to save all of their xmas and birthday money for this. DS bought an x-box with his and has frittered away what was left.

My mum then gave them each $150 for the holiday -problem solved hmm

Now, DS has a 3 day trip to a theme park with school. I told him I would give him £20 and he would have to try to save or do some jobs for the rest. (Obviously he thinks £20 is far too little for 3 days, although DD was more than happy with the same amount for a week long ski-trip...)

I really want him to start learning the value of money and to be a bit more sensible.

Yesterday he smirked at me and said that Grandma is going to give him his spending money for the trip so he doesn't need to do any chores!

I am not impressed at all. Obviously my mother just thinks I'm being mean and unfair. angry

AIBU re pocket money? (Obviously I don't think I am but will stand corrected if everyone here tells me I am.)
Also how much pocket money is reasonable for a 13 year old on a 3 day school trip?

Hattifattner Sun 17-Mar-13 09:29:52

Friends of a friend pay their teen a similar amount as OP. This teen now runs a lucrative sideline in dealing cannabis. His mum says he only needs £5 and "He doesn't really spend it" .

Our ds, 13, gets £35 a month paid monthly into a bank account. He also gets a phone and we pay all his youth and sport club fees.

I think if you want to teach him the value of money, you have to give him more to value! So he can learn to save up, so he can learn to be more responsible for himself, so he can go and hang with his mates at the movies or MacD's.

By giving him so little, what chance does he have to save up £50 for his school trip - it would take nearly a year, and not many teens could delay gratification that long.

stifnstav Sun 17-Mar-13 09:36:16

You aren't teaching him anything by controlling his budget.

In the first instance, I'd be teaching him (and Grandma) a lesson in how not to undermine parents by saying "no more, Gma pays for everything if thats how you want to play the game."

Literally everything.

Then once that novelty wears off for them both, it would be a new system going in place. A set amount dependant on chores being done, from which he pays for all of his outgoings. You can explain to the younger ones that their system changes when they hit a certain age.

Otherwise, the world of work will come as a major shock to him.

To be honest, I am annoyed that your DS has been allowed to laze around while his sisters do all the chores. Its a bad message to send to your daughters.

lljkk Sun 17-Mar-13 09:38:44

It's one of the pleasures of grandparents to be generous & lovely for grandchildren to know they have generous involved grandparents. I wouldn't want to interfere with that, too much.

However, I think you have a case for telling Granny that she needs to make sure she is fair to all the grandchildren, to find a system that is perceived as fair in the long run.

As for teaching your 13yo to be sensible with money... what if you give him the phone top up as cash & it's up to him to actually get it topped up? Or do something else where he has to manage his money more actively.

Sorry, have to point out the obvious... if you can afford an Easter holiday to Florida & for your DC to go on skiing holidays as well this year, then saying you can't afford more than £5/month pocket money seems kinda odd.

diddl Sun 17-Mar-13 09:41:54

I do agree with the "give him more & pay for less" though.

nkf Sun 17-Mar-13 09:46:47

I think £5 a month is a bit low for 13. Do you mean a week? I don't see how you can forbid granny to do give the money. He will learn. There will come a time when he wants something and he won't be able to afford it because he has spent it on crap.

You can say to your mum - he's terrible with money you know - and see how she responds. But I would try to avoid getting caught up in allowing him to play you too off against each other.

I don't pay for chores. I do insist that they are done though. We all live here.

Just seen - he really gets £11 a month (with the phone bit.) Still a bit low I'd say. I'm pretty skint and tight and my 13 year old gets £20.

nkf Sun 17-Mar-13 09:47:18

two not too. What's wrong with me?

GreatUncleEddie Sun 17-Mar-13 09:58:05

My boys are 12 and 14 they get £17 pcm paid into the bank. We pay for their clothes (they would have to top up if they wanted Hollister, but they don't) and their phones (£7.50 pcm) - the money is for random spending, cinema trips, xbox/runescape, saving. They both have a healthy bank balance and they have a good idea how to manage money. We don't pay for chores, but we do expect them to be done - we have chosen not to link the two.

GreatUncleEddie Sun 17-Mar-13 09:59:25

I woukd ask granny to stop and explain that she is doing DS no favours and also being v unfair to the other kids. And undermining you.

sashh Sun 17-Mar-13 10:28:57

I'd be fining him for being sly and sneaky.

MortifiedAdams Sun 17-Mar-13 10:30:33

Op I really dont think you can teach him to manage his money the way you do it. Essentially the £5 pm is squander money - if he go out with friends you anywys. If he wants music or books/apps he gets them.anyways.

Far better, imo, would be to give him £40 or so on the first of the month and he buys all his own treats / activities etc. Then, come halfway through the.month when he has nothing left and everyones going to the pictures without him, he will be motovated to save

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