Dear Mr. Dad: My parents never talked with me and my siblings about money, but I’m feeling the need to give my kids—ages 4 and 7—a better financial education than I got. When’s the right time to start?
A: What is it about money that no one wants to talk about it? Drugs, sex, and violence are perfectly acceptable dinnertime fare, but we’re almost embarrassed to discuss something that we use every single day of our life. How much we make and where that money goes after the government gets its share is nobody’s business but our own (and, perhaps, our accountant’s).
But that’s a mistake. Today’s kids feel more entitled than those of probably any previous generation. And too many of them don’t learn simple lessons about finances, such as how much work it takes to earn a dollar, how much goes for taxes, how much goes for rent and food, how much their violin lessons and daycare cost, and how much they should be putting aside for retirement.
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