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You are here: Home > Co-opme > Action plans and tips > Preparing for future: Youth and finance > Articles > Consumption: like parent, like child?

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Consumption: like parent, like child?

In families, it's rare that everyone agrees about money. It's only natural. Each family member has a unique relationship with money, particularly spouses.

It's a well-known fact: children hate to obey, but they love to imitate. That's why sometimes it's necessary to change some of our financial habits. It's not easy, but it is possible! Getting on the same page is essential for passing along healthy habits to children. This is even more important during high-spending periods like the holidays.

Family history, education, standard of living, personal culture, experiences and even innate tendencies can be an explosive mix when they encounter their antithesis. Recognizing this is already a step forward.

Here are 4 things to think about to introduce new positive behaviour:

  1. What to do if one person prefers saving and the other prefers spending
    Start a conversation with the goal of finding a balance so that each person feels respected in their choices, without putting the entire family's financial situation at risk. The point is to reach an agreement as a couple about modelling positive behaviour for children.
  2. How to juggle income and expenses differently
    The point of a budget is not to make you feel poor, but rather to assign a value to financial choices. It involves establishing the relative importance of each personal financial priority. A clear choice will lead to consistent consumer behaviour.
  3. How to educate your child in spite of your own challenges
    Children, even young ones, can see their parents’ ambivalence about household expenses. They learn from the behaviour of adults around them. Even the most trivial gestures are stamped in their mind and one day or another will influence their consumer behaviour.
  4. To talk or not to talk about your difficulties as a consumer
    Sharing your experiences and questions with children is a sign of openness and shows them that talking about money as a family is not taboo. It also teaches them about society, the world of consumption, marketing and advertising.

To do with children

Discover our educational activities about consumption:

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