Rule #49: Steal Your Kid’s Money

in Rules of Parenting

There is DEFINITELY enough in here for some malt liquor.

There is DEFINITELY enough in here for some malt liquor.

His piggy bank sits there, pregnant with quarters and tightly folded dollars bills and an occasional 5 spot.

And, truth is, this big ceramic piece of money-saving goodness kind of mocks you.

It says: Look at how Little Daniel is earnestly stowing away money every day, and look at how it accumulates nicely. And you? Your savings account is a barren womb of financial disappointment.

You have no cash these days, and your credit card has become a plastic whore of convenience who lays down any time you’d like.

That’s why swiping your child’s piggy bank cash—just to have a little walking-around money—is important to your social status and the engine that drives our great economy.

Steal a Buck, Teach a Child

Pilfering your child’s money while he sleeps is easy—but it doesn’t teach him valuable “life lessons,” which you need to impart so that he’ll always be financially wary of strangers, friends and, perhaps most important, loved ones.

With this in mind, drain your child’s piggy bank via these techniques:

Confuse with trickery

Sure, they may try to protest. But who takes protesters seriously?

Sure, they may try to protest. But who takes protesters OR kids seriously?

For children who haven’t learned to count or who are simply idiots when it comes to currency values, take advantage of their shortcomings by “trading” currency of lesser value for bigger bucks.

When dealing with your 4 year old, say something like, “Boy, Brendan, you sure have lots of money in Mr. Piggy. Oh, I see you have that ugly, crinkly bill with the 5-0 written on it that grandma gave you for your birthday. It sure is ugly, though—and it smells like mold. I’ll do you a favor: I’ll give you this shiny quarter if you give me that ugly, crinkly piece of paper. I hate to trade my shiny quarter, but I’ll do it because I really, really love you.”

Bet on random shit

Kids love to compete, and they really love to “bet” on things like how long they can hold their breath or cross their eyes. Which is your opportunity to swipe your child’s money by upping the ante on new forms of betting.

Offer this “learning opportunity”: “Sara, see this cute little cup? It’s called a shot glass. I’ll bet you all the dollar bills you have in your piggy bank that you can’t drink all of this Jack Daniels without spitting it out.”

Naturally, Sara will deposit the shot of JD on floor in a firestorm of rotgut disgust for both the product and you. Chances are she won’t drink again (life lesson # 1), bet on anything that involves her cash (life lesson #2), or trust family members who use kindly, persuasive voices when discussing money (life lesson #3).

And if she actually does stomach the first JD shot, calmly bet double or nothing.

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

kevin April 20, 2009 at 10:22 am

i bet your piggybank you can’t drink this bottle of jager.

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SillyDad April 20, 2009 at 11:09 am

Considering the fact that my bank account “is a barren womb of financial disappointment” because I have children, I just do what my father did. I take the money and call it “rent”.
Funny thing is, I moved out as soon as I turned 18 and never moved back in. I’m pretty sure that’s what he was going for.

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SillyDad April 20, 2009 at 11:14 am

Oh, I almost forgot. We also place a “Daddy Tax” on all birthday and holiday cards from the grandparents. I figure that since my parents never gave me a dime, this is the only way I can collect…

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Father Knows Worst April 20, 2009 at 2:59 pm

@kevin: Did my piggy bank take the bet?

@SillyDad: I think that’s more than fair. You provide an infrastructure, and regardless of how shitty it is, you skim a little love off the top. You deserve it. You know, my Uncle Sam does the same thing.

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jason April 20, 2009 at 5:45 pm

Other things you should steal from kids: Happy Meal toys, Flintstone’s vitamins, girlfriends, their childhood, ambitions, dreams and hope.

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Dory April 21, 2009 at 4:38 am

Another way to swipe your kid’s bucks… if they’re in about 1st grade or less, they don’t really understand the value of gift cards. Help them pick out one thing and keep the card after you check out. Spend the balance of the card later. Rationalize this shameful behavior as “Hey, parenthood has so few perks and I deserve this. It’s really the least my kid can do considering all I do for him/her.” *evil grin*

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Father Knows Worst April 21, 2009 at 7:23 am

@jason: I don’t know whether to be more impressed by this, or your legendary list of wang slang from Rule #42.

@Dory: I humbly salute your genius. THAT is a brilliant idea.

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Miss C. April 21, 2009 at 9:42 am

“You have no cash these days, and your credit card has become a plastic whore of convenience who lays down any time you’d like.”

OK. That is officially the funniest thing I’ve ever read. Keep up the great work!

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bitchmobile April 23, 2009 at 5:29 pm

Where were you and your blog when I needed you? Now that my kid has grown up, gotten a job with a promotion, not to mention gotten himself a wife- I have very little chance to utilize your bad parenting advice. That is until I have grandkids, muahahahah!

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edie May 6, 2009 at 8:44 am

DAMN i have been putting straight jack daniels in my kids’ bottles/sippy cups since they were born, so now they love that “special sauce” as i like to call it. obviously i did not realize at the time how this would come back to bite me in the ass.

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kitty August 4, 2009 at 7:14 am

I wish you guys were my parents. /tear

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Bill Dwight at FamZoo July 13, 2010 at 5:26 pm

I recommend you ditch the quaint & noisy piggy-banks and move to an online allowance system like FamZoo. That way, you can silently pilfer their hard-earned savings from the comfort of your laptop without having to sneak into their room and risk stepping on a painful lego piece in the dark. If they notice something is amiss, just blame it on the hapless company providing the online service. It’s also a great way to teach them not to foolishly trust online service providers with their hard-earned cash.

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Kelly November 4, 2010 at 8:35 am

“calmly bet double or nothing”………………….thanks for the hernia and busted vein in my eye FKW. Luckily, I just peed, or I’d be thanking you for that as well. If I had kids, not only would I be armed to the teeth with a plethora of sound advice, I would be more inclined to simply institute a service charge for allowing my children to exist on a day to day basis. Call it emotional rent, if you will. I would pull random examples from the Chinese customs when dealing with my girls especially.

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shelby February 6, 2012 at 10:02 pm

you are a bunch of freaking jerks why would you do something like that to your own kids why would you do something like that to them. I hope for each amd everyone of you, your kids learn what you are doing to them and hates you in the long run

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kitty February 8, 2012 at 6:02 pm

Lol… @shelby, did your papa steal your money? naww

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shelby February 9, 2012 at 2:00 am

No!!! My father did not tell me to say that.

Oh, by the way, Did your father teach you to steal from others because he atole from yoi.

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kitty February 9, 2012 at 5:01 pm

Your father what now? I don’t have a father. My mother got to mess me up all on her own.

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shelby February 9, 2012 at 10:33 pm

That’s why you you are the jerk you are.

Hmmmm…. well did your mother teach you To do that then. :-)

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