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AIBU?

Spending pocket money

56 replies

eternalnamechange · 10/06/2017 22:39

I've opened a bank account for DS12 and the plan is i will put £40 a month in, and that will be his pocket money, starting on pay day at the end of this month. I put £25 in it at the start of this week since we're part way through the month and he's already had money for this and that since last pay day.

He's just texted me from his dads asking if he can spend £20 on something for part of an Xbox game. He already has the game, but wants to buy points to make it better.

I said no. Reason being I want him to save money to spend during the holidays, and I think it's a waste.

Of course, he's saying I told him it's money to manage, etc. But i think letting him blow the very first instalment gets him off to a bad start. If he already had other money saved, then fair enough. Obviously he'll get the next instalment in a couple of weeks, but I don't want him getting in the habit of blowing it as soon as he gets it.

I could have said yes, then it comes to the holidays and I have to follow through with the hard lesson, but then it's me who has to look at his miserable little face when he has managed his money well enough to do things with his pals.

So AIBU?

OP posts:
missiondecision · 10/06/2017 22:43

Once you give your children pocket money, you can't really tell them when and what to spend it on im afraid.
If you want him to have savings only give him half and you save the other half for when he will "need it".

ImperialBlether · 10/06/2017 22:46

The whole point of pocket money is that it's a learning curve for the child. He needs to know - really understand - that it's a payment per month and he can't spend what he doesn't have. Equally he can spend what he does have.

Cakescakescakes · 10/06/2017 22:47

You need to let him learn that for himself. Surely that's the point of pocket money?

eternalnamechange · 10/06/2017 22:52

I know that deep down. But I also know that when it comes to the holidays, I won't be able to say no to him doing things with his friends, and I'll be forking out the money again. Which I know I shouldn't. But it seemed easier saying no this.

I'll be interested to know if he asked his dad if he could spend his pocket from there on it.

OP posts:
Justmadeperfectflapjacks · 10/06/2017 22:54

Suggest if he can't budget properly you will half the amount and keep half to be saved for holidays.

eternalnamechange · 10/06/2017 23:08

Yes, that might be an idea. I'll see if he brings it up again tomorrow and I'll suggest that.

If he doesn't, I'll leave it as it is. I just think he's going to be quite impulsive with his spending and never learn. He hardly ever asks me to buy him "stuff" and he's quick to use his own money for juice, sweets,etc when just going the park and things. But I do think this might burn a hole in his pocket for a while.

OP posts:
ImperialBlether · 10/06/2017 23:16

What about teaching him to split in in 1/3rds - 1/3 to save, 1/3 to spend on every day items, 1/3 on necessary items? Or 1/2 and 1/2?

ImperialBlether · 10/06/2017 23:16

Sorry, drink talking - trying to remember what the other 1/3 was for!

lifetothefull · 10/06/2017 23:40

You can pay him weekly rather than monthly.

nomorebabiesyet · 10/06/2017 23:44

But he has to make that mistake to learn... we all did. We dont all always budget right. Let him learn that mistake. Then when or if he does make the mistake talk to him about budgeting

rightwhine · 10/06/2017 23:45

Let him learn the lesson of running out but make sure he earns any extra needed when the time comes.

eternalnamechange · 10/06/2017 23:58

I did give him the option of weekly or monthly. He chose monthly. But maybe we should talk about that again.

OP posts:
RB68 · 11/06/2017 00:00

of course you can dictate what he spends it on, e.g. if he spent it on 20 quids worth of haribo sours... or in the extreme some porn would you want a say!!!

HOWEVER, he asked you so he is unsure himself by the sounds of it. I would actually go back with questions, so do you think that is reasonable? Is that something that your Dad and I would see as sensible, what other sorts of things might you need this month, and have a discussion on it - if pushed you can say you would rather he didn't and give your reasons and let him go from there. We get the same issue as DD wants to spend hers on Sims packs then wants other things off me - sneaking them in the shopping etc till I pull her on it!!

agentdaisy · 11/06/2017 00:15

What's the point in giving him pocket money so he learns to budget if you won't let him spend it on what he wants? It's either his money to buy what he wants or it isn't.

If he blows this months money and has nothing left to go out with friends then so be it. Have the discussion about spending it more wisely. Summer holidays aren't for another six weeks so he'll hopefully learn the lesson quickly and spend it more wisely in July and August when he's off school.

It would probably be better to give it to him weekly until he's a bit older. That way he will have to save for something over £10 and if he blows one weeks money in one go then it's only a week of having nothing instead of three.

mumeeee · 11/06/2017 00:20

£40 a month sounds a lot. Why not give him £20 a month and tell him you will put the other half in a holiday fund

khajiit13 · 11/06/2017 00:25

Let him blow it and do it weekly rather than monthly from now on. Stay strong over summer and he will learn

Colacolaaddict · 11/06/2017 01:40

I'm going to disagree with most.

It may just be my old age but I think it's fine to have a rule of not spending real money on virtual things like points/jewels for online games. Yes he does need to learn to manage his money, but you can also place reasonable conditions - don't spend it all on sweets, don't gamble or get anything pierced with it! I know he's too young for most of those but I think the principle's still valid.

However I do think any rules you put in should be consistent. Don't say you can't buy points now because you have to save for hols, then let him spend it all on points in week 1 of the hols.

BackforGood · 11/06/2017 01:45

He does need to learn to manage his money, but £10 a week is a MASSIVE amount for a 12 yr old.
If it is so important to you that he has money for his holiday fund, then why not give him £20 to spend as he wishes (per month) and save £20 for him to spend as you wish.

Colacolaaddict · 11/06/2017 01:47

Also we should be setting them up to succeed as much as possible. Yes he might learn by blowing it, but he might also come out thinking he's rubbish with money.

Has he had smaller regular amounts before, and did he manage to save those ok? Or is he going from nothing to £40 a month?

Katedotness1963 · 11/06/2017 07:13

We did this for our sons. The first month the eldest spent the lot straight away and had nothing. Second month he lasted a bit longer, by the third month he had money to last. Didn't take him long to realise he didn't like sitting at home for weeks because he blew through his money...

LedaP · 11/06/2017 07:18

You arent teaching him how to handle his own money by dictating what is ok. Nor are you teaching if you just give him money to do extra things anyway.

Like pp i did this with dd. Withing 3 months she was budgeting properly.

Ilovetolurk · 11/06/2017 07:18

YABU. My DS is a similar age and spends his pocket money on xbox just like your scenario. He understands that once spent on xbox its then unavailable for other things and that his choice. He takes a lot of pleasure from his online purchase and doesn't regret it later and wish he had spent it elsewhere.

I think you are making your priorities his. If you are determining how he spends it it isn't pocket money is it

BigGreenOlives · 11/06/2017 07:25

I think you are being too generous, he is getting almost the same amount as my 17 year old who pays for his social life from his allowance. (Not fares or basic clothes).

BusyBeez99 · 11/06/2017 07:41

Wow it's the £40 that stuck out for me my DS11 gets £10 a month and learns to save for PS games etc. It's way too much money. That's why he can afford to be frivolous on spending it on silly things. However my take on it is our DS can spend on what he likes and when it's gone it's gone. But that's just £10 a month

junebirthdaygirl · 11/06/2017 07:44

Its regular enough to want to spend the first instalment as its a novelty. He will soon learn. I did it myself with my first monthly wage at 21. Soon learnt. Let him off. There has to be joy in getting pocket money too.

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