Growing up is generally the one thing all kids aspire to and reaching the milestones is one of the things parents pay closer attention to as affirmation that our children are doing what they are supposed to be doing.
But what happens if sometimes, as a parent, you are caught out by your child asking a perfectly reasonable question that stops you dead in your tracks? When the question is not one you would expect a just short of 8 year old to ask?
Both our boys have been asking to go back to South Africa to visit family and we have been telling them that we would love to go, but it costs a lot of money and we need to save up for it.
They usually then accept the answer and it can be a few weeks or sometimes months before they ask again. On the last occasion of asking, it was our 8 year old who then asked ‘Well, what are you spending your money on if you are not saving up to go? Are you spending your money on little things when you should be saving up for a big thing?’
To be honest, I was completely taken aback. He wasn’t trying to be cheeky and I was more struck with the fact that the question had a complex answer (I mostly try and answer their questions as honestly as is age appropriate). So I answered with the correct answer of ‘we are saving but it takes time’.
What did strike me more was that our son is growing up faster than my brain can comprehend. We teach our boys about being sensible with their money and ask them the same question he asked me when they are looking to spend it. It would appear that these lessons have stuck.