I was reading About money and I realised that many people were taught manners and religion but very little about how to handle money. Let’s face it, how you handle money to a large extent will determine your quality of life.
My first experiences with money was always begging my mom by age three to allow me hand over money to cashiers at the store. By the time I was adding and subtracting in primary one or so, i wanted to count the actual money and try to figure out the change. I also was taught about money being important but not everything…this perspective is probably different from someone that grew up in an environment where there was very little and there is always the drive for money.
I started getting a daily allowance in primary one also…one Naira everyday- are you trying to guess when I entered primary school? 😅And I got school lunch and I was allowed to take food from home in my lunch box – my mother was one of those whatever tickles your fancy type of mothers 😆. I took cornflakes to school a lot with home made soy milk or soya beans moin moin with plenty sugar. Sometimes lemonade with banana fritters etc. I also realised by primary one that it made sense to not spend all my money because if I saved I could go to leventis or kingsway during the weekend and buy somehing “nice”. So i would only spend 30 kobo for maybe biscuit and I would get home and put the remaining 70 kobo in my “kolo” (those wooden piggy banks). I was only willing to disclose to my dad where the key was…I wouldn’t even tell my mom. And I used to count the money in my parents bathroom everyday when I added my daily change to it and I had a mini notebook that I wrote the “balance” in.
My mom rarely bought “minerals”..and we had a lemon tree in the yard, so by age four we all learnt to roll the lemons and make lemonade. I would make lemonade and trade it for half a bottle of coke or 2 pieces of square okin. Sometimes i went back home with my entire 1 Naira. Fridays were special cause I discovered suya…so if i didnt buy anything the whole week, i could but N2 suya and just relax and eat it.
By the time I went to boarding school in Jss 1, we werent allowed to keep money, just an account with the school “tuck” shop. But I would only spend N300 out of maybe N3k in an entire term. My parents rarely ever replaced that allowance in the three years I was in boarding school.
By the time I got to secondary school – ss1 as a day student, my allowance was bouyant sha:mrgreen:. N400 per day, my mom was against it, but my dad maintained his stance. He gave the money weekly and I got hair allowance -N500 per week- so I was totalling N2,500 a week. And sometimes my dad would mess wih us by giving us allowance at the beginning of the term for the entire term. Then if you also went to meet my dad that they asked you to buy a note book or pens- he wouldn’t give you any extra money- so you had to know how to save. Neither were you getting money for fixing bicycles etc or weekend hangout with your friends. I started looking for ways to save the entire amount- i would walk to the neighbourhood behind my house and do my hair for N100 and then I started baking cakes for sale..by the time summer came around, my mom would always tell you your spending budget for summer- I always noticed by the time she was done, you would have to give up a few things or buy all your stuff from payless (please google Payless if you dont know warramtalkingabout) and I wanted to wear Nike😅. So i would offer to buy my Nike sneakers oh from allowance saved.
Oh yeah by age 10 in my house my dad stopped spanking and my mom stopped fighting muay thai (she is a boxer and kicker) – no organised beating spread your hands type mess- you got Jamaican Style beatdown if she caught you. My dad was efficient – he stopped making noise and disciplining- wake up late for school – he could randomly decide to deny you allowance for a week or month- so everybody was on their best behaviour. Because if you lose your allowance and you don’t save, the other siblings would loan shark you- and you might pay interest till the term ends – “it doesn’t worth it”- better to just behave. He never took allowance away if grades fell though – he would just say “even successful armed robbery takes diligence, so nothing is easy”! 😅
When I went to America for University I had amassed quite a bit of money – close to $2k and I was like chai I have arrived. The allowances also stopped- somehow my dad figured if you are old enough for university you can get a job 😅. The point to the entire epistle above- my parents didn’t give any outright lectures about handling money and saving- they just sort of forced it upon us. The one thing I wish we got taught was investing money though. That I had to learn on my own and it has been interesting to say the least.
How were you trained with money? Was it ever even discussed in your household? How has it affected how you deal with money today? If you have kids, how are you teaching them about money? It may help us aspiring parents. Please feel free to share….
Win Something HERE