Having a discussion with family members doesn’t always come easy or even naturally. The hurdles one faces here can be harder to overcome depending on the seriousness of the subject matter, too.
That said, some dialogues cannot be tabled for another time. For parents, ensuring that their kids are financially responsible and living prosperous lifestyles is vital. Problems can arise anytime, and if you are a parent, your guidance and wisdom may be needed long after your children turn eighteen.
However, many Americans choose not to discuss money, with the extent of the nationwide taboo depending on one’s personal circumstances. Even if your child has agreed to hear out your counsel, it does not mean everything is straight-shooting from then on, either. Challenges can still be expected.
Here are some tips to help you talk to your adult children about money.
Discuss Money-Related Topics First
Broaching a subject as serious as money can be somewhat startling if the conversation lands out of the blue. Therefore, you should spend time talking with your adult child about all money-related subject matters, instead of just their situation alone.
It is important to set a precedent that you are somebody they can talk to about these matters. You can showcase your aptitude and prove yourself worthy of giving advice, making your adult child more likely to seek it from you.
Related topics might be:
- The state of the economy.
- Current expert forecasts of the property markets and your predictions.
- Your adult child’s career goings-on.
- How your budgeting efforts are developing.
- What you and your child are saving up for.
Regularly conversing about other related subjects may also offer natural springboards into the conversation about money. That way, you can facilitate the discussion more organically and seamlessly for your adult child’s comfort.
Discuss Insightful Resources
Your adult kids may quickly tune out if you are attempting to offer guidance. In these situations, they may underestimate the extent of their knowledge or be keen to isolate themselves in their concerns.
Consequently, it may be a good idea to prove that you have done some reading on financial issues. That way, you can infuse your potential solutions and ideas with more credibility. If you are worried about whether or not you are reciting what you have read well enough, you could always link your adult children to the resource directly too. After that, they can draw their conclusions.
For example, this resource can teach your adult child how to save $1000 in a month, suggesting things like reviewing monthly subscriptions and tax withholdings. Checking insurance rates and using automation to keep savings under tight control are also advised. In the end, there are plenty of options to help out anyone feeling financially stuck, and your adult children may need that reminder.
Of course, the great thing about quality resources is that they can be updated over time. As new technologies are developed, and economic circumstances change, guidance may evolve too. Therefore, you and your adult child should save these links and occasionally check back with the provider to see what money management techniques may be new and useful.
Set Boundaries For Help
It may be easier to talk to your adult child about money if you remind them of how much help you are willing to offer. Approaching things from a place of kindness, as well as setting up firm boundaries, may encourage them to open up on the matter.
Remember, some parents consider it their duty to help their kids financially. While support is often wonderful, in some situations, it may exacerbate the issue. For example, if your adult child is spending recklessly because they know they will receive supplements from you, your charity may only be fueling the fire.
You must decide how much you are willing to help your adult child. If you are unsure what boundaries to set, reexamine your finances. Would bailing them out of money troubles hurt you considerably? Can you budget for the amount you are willing to give? Is there a pattern of excessive giving in your spending habits?
It may be worth mentioning your circumstances to your adult child should they require help. If you remind them of your position, it could be a sobering reality check for them to be more fiscally responsible too.
It is easy for tensions to develop around the subject of money. Therefore, you must remain calm and direct during these discussions. Otherwise, your care and concern may be misread as passing judgment or being overly critical.
Keep an open mind with your adult child’s spending, even if they have adopted reckless practices. After all, there may be serious issues underlying their money mismanagement. Perhaps an abusive partner is siphoning their finances? Could depression be fueling gambling habits? Might low self-esteem facilitate non-essential spending?
Very few people are careless with their finances for no reason. It might be best to assume there is an underlying problem and thus handle all of your financial dialogues with more sensitivity and tact.