Host: Should we discuss finances as a family?
Janet Bodnar: You should definitely discuss finances as a family. Now, nowadays, we are told that we have to discuss sex with our kids and we have to discuss drugs with our kids. Now, we have to discuss internet safety with our kids. But money and finance is one of those taboo subjects that parents feel very uncomfortable very often very often talking about and I hope in this series about teaching your kids the basics of money, we have given people some very practical tips that make parents feel more comfortable about discussing financial issues with their kids. But I think just general discussions are fine to have with the kids and I think that you do not have to give kids chapter and verse about your personal finances.
You do not have to tell them how much money you make for example which is one of those things that parents feel very uncomfortable discussing and it does not matter if whether you make $30,000 or $130,000. It is all the same to your kids. It is still more money than the video game system that they want to buy. So, you do not have to be that specific and it is true that they probably will blab some of this to their friends. So, you can be a little circumspect. But just telling them for example, they will want to know how they do they fit into the grade scheme of things. Are we rich or are we poor and if you are middleclass as most of us consider ourselves middleclass, you can say, "Well, we have enough money to buy the things that we need and a little bit extra too to give away.
"Just examples like that are all you really need to just to reassurance to your kids that things you are doing are right, they are doing fine and if you are worried about losing a job for example, you can say, "Do not worry.
" They may pick up on a little bit of your worry there and your concern but you can say, "We are going to get on employment benefits for a certain amount of time and we are going to be looking for a new job.
" Just to be reassuring to your kids because that is what they are looking for and just a general idea of where you fit into the grade scheme of things and also, just encouraging them to get a good education so that they can get a good job. Well, good education is good for lots of different things, but one of the things is that they can grow up and get a good job so that they can support themselves and their families and again, have a little bit extra to spend on the fun things or to give away. So, those kinds of discussions I think are very helpful for a family.