Q: My 10-year-old lost the $15 I gave her to go shopping. Should I replace it?
A: Oh, it's so hard to watch our children suffer in hardship. But if you replace the money, you are teaching your daughter that you are responsible for correcting her problems and that you are her financial security net.
By saying, "Wow, I'm so sorry you lost your money and your shopping trip was spoiled, I'll bet you'll figure out a safe place for money so that doesn't happen again!", you go much farther in being a loving parent; you may lay the groundwork for raising a child who feels your love and support, but also has the self-esteem that comes from developing her own skills of being responsible and independent.
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