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AIBU?

I don’t want to lower my childrens a pocket money to match their stepsisters

340 replies

ormav · 15/09/2022 16:16

I have a daughter (15) and a son (12) with my ex. Originally when their mum and I started giving them pocket money we went with a formula of £3 multiplied by how old they were. Since their mum and I divorced 7 years ago I have been responsible for paying the kids their pocket money. I have kept to the original formula we agreed on. So now our daughter get £45 a week and her brother gets £36 a week.

Last year their mum got married. Her husband also has a daughter (14), so my kids have a stepsister now. Apparently she just found out how much our children are getting for their pocket money. She found out when my sons was talking about saving up for a new computer and she asked how he could afford it and how much money he got. He told her how much and how it was based on how old they were.

Now that she knows my ex and her husband say it’s caused a lot of trouble in their household leading to jealousy issues and fighting. This is because their stepsister only receives £10 a week. Both my ex and her husband said that I need to lower the kids allowance. They say that inequality like that between children in the same household can severely adversely affect their sibling relationship. I think that if there is inequality in their household that it is their responsibility to deal with it, not mine. I told them they should should raise the amount his daughter gets if it’s an issue.

They told me that they couldn’t afford to give her that much, but even if they could they wouldn’t because they don’t believe children their ages should have access to the amount of money they have. They say that continuing to give them this much pocket money will also make them spoiled, entitled and bad with money.

My ex later said she assumed I was giving them a normal amount even though I just stuck with the formula we did and agreed upon a long time ago. She says that I obviously should have stopped raising it when it reached normal amount (I’ll point out here that she never said what a normal amount it).

I have since looked up the regular range for pocket money and I’ll acknowledge that theirs is on the higher side. That’s said I do not believe it is adversely affecting them. They do not act spoiled or entitled. They never demand to have things and accept when things don’t go as planned. They do their chores without complaint and do well in school. They get along very well with others their own age with the exception of their stepsister because she calls them spoiled. I would also they are the opposite of bad with money as they both have saved up a significant amount in their accounts and aren’t just spending their money on pointless things as soon as they get it.

OP posts:
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InsertPunHere · 15/09/2022 17:27

Bloody hell, that's oinsane amounts of money for 12 and 15 year olds. Unless they are paying for their own clothes, clubs, phones etc, maybe?

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Mueslikid · 15/09/2022 17:27

I would discuss with your children as they are the ones potentially affected - either their stepsister will resent them - or they will resent her if they have to give up £60 a week between them!

Perhaps suggest to your children that you will pay them £1 per year of age as “pocket money”, and will put £2 per year of age into a separate savings account.
That will make the amounts of weekly disposable income more even between the 3 children.

Since the children save a lot anyway, it won’t make much difference to them, but will appear fairer, and they can use the savings for big purchases like computers, as before.

Then it is up to the stepsisters parents if they raise her amount a little to match her age - it’s a lot more manageable to raise £4 than £35!

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Sarah2891 · 15/09/2022 17:27

I don't see anything wrong with what you give them. Do what you want to do.

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Summergirl5 · 15/09/2022 17:27

Christ
im a 50 year old woman,and I don’t have £45 a week to spend on myself .
dear god ..that is insane

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Blueblell · 15/09/2022 17:28

It is a lot but as part of a long term saving plan it is fine and it is what you choose to give them. It is down to the parents of their step sister to say look they get that from their Dad but unfortunately we can’t afford that. I see their point to an extent and it might cause a bit of issue but no you should not have to give them less. That would then cause them a lot of Ill feeling towards their stepsister I imagine.

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waffless · 15/09/2022 17:29

Your ex is unreasonable. Ignore

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FrippEnos · 15/09/2022 17:30

Mumoftwoinprimary
If you stop then they will hate their stepsister. (And probably their step dad as well.)
Seems to me a pretty daft way for your ex to promote family harmony….

Depending on the ex it could be a way to turn the children against the OP.

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starfishmummy · 15/09/2022 17:32

It does seem a lot, but it really depends on what they are expected to do with it. So is it £45 and teen buys some of her own clothes, toiletries over and above the family ones, money for activities etc vs £10 "silly money" and parents finance everything else.

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NovaDeltas · 15/09/2022 17:37

Just tell her they're not siblings so it's none.od her business.

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CharlesIsQueensHorcrux · 15/09/2022 17:38

It is impossible to make things exactly equal between step siblings and these kids are all old enough to understand that

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VioletInsolence · 15/09/2022 17:38

So you’re paying the money directly into their accounts and you expect them to deal with the inequality. But the only way to do that is for them to spend around £140 extra a month which is rather a lot to find and unfair of you.

you’re spending around £350 on pocket money each month so you must have a lot of money to spare. Why don’t you try being kind and subsidise their step sister’s pocket money?

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luxxlisbon · 15/09/2022 17:39

It’s also interesting that posters some posters are claiming £30 a week is a totally insane amount of money.
Genuine question, what do your teens do on the weekend for £10 a week?? Do they not socialise?
It’s funny seeing people claim these kids are more likely to get into drink and drugs when actually a fiver would get them smashed in the park but £30 means they can spend their night at Nando’s and the cinema. I know where I would rather my 14 year old was!

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Sceptre86 · 15/09/2022 17:40

If anything it is the stepsister that is spoiled causing a ruckus because she isn't getting the same. How much you give to your children is your business. Is it a lot, compared to £10 a week yes but it's your money and your children. I'd stick to your guns on this one. If you notice at any point your own kids behaviour starts to get entitled then you can adjust accordingly or if your financial situation changes.

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KosherDill · 15/09/2022 17:42

I agree it's on the high side -- I give myself 25 a week for whimsical spends and I earn six figures!

That said, you can give your children any amount of pocket money you want to; it's nothing to do with your ex or her spouse.

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Sceptre86 · 15/09/2022 17:42

@VioletInsolence there's being kind an being a mug. Hopefully op isn't the latter.

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homarrrer · 15/09/2022 17:42

Fucking hell. I wish I was your child. Please adopt me.

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luxxlisbon · 15/09/2022 17:42

@VioletInsolence Why don’t you try being kind and subsidise their step sister’s pocket money?
This can’t be a serious suggestion? Why should he give £140 a month to a completely random child who has her own parents and an additional step mum and potentially even stepdad?
This girl isn’t anything to do with OP!

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Freedomfighters · 15/09/2022 17:45

It is a lot of money but it's up to you. You don't have to reduce it because someone else's child is getting less.

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MrsSteveHarrington · 15/09/2022 17:45

That formula would seem ok for a monthly amount but not weekly. That’s an insane amount and I can understand the step sisters upset.

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ormav · 15/09/2022 17:45

@Mammma91 that just seems redundant. They already save the majority of their money in their accounts and daughter is currently saving up for a car on her own.

OP posts:
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LemonSwan · 15/09/2022 17:45

Well I agree it is high. But the only person I know who had this kind of tiered weekly pocket money is extremely good with money. He understands it’s value, he saves and he spends in a reasonable way (neither tight nor or a splurger). So I don’t agree with those saying they will be spoilt.

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youlightupmyday · 15/09/2022 17:47

KosherDill · 15/09/2022 17:42

I agree it's on the high side -- I give myself 25 a week for whimsical spends and I earn six figures!

That said, you can give your children any amount of pocket money you want to; it's nothing to do with your ex or her spouse.

Well, that is not the norm. I earn that as do my peer group and we spend much more than that on clothes, dining out etc. And still save etc

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gogohmm · 15/09/2022 17:48

Can I suggest that part is pocket money and the rest goes into savings for when they are adults- call it university fund or whatever

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Welshrarebitontoast · 15/09/2022 17:49

Not your circus, not your monkeys so @ormav pay your children what you want (and what you can afford).

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newbiename · 15/09/2022 17:49

£36 a week for a 12 year old !!!
I thought you were going to say they were monthly amounts.

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