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Parenting on a low income

Updated on October 22, 2011

Lose lose parenting.

We are made to feel as parents, that we fail no matter what we choose. This is more a social change in how much is expected of us. Years ago, you would have been expected to keep your children fed, warm and a roof over their head. Nowadays, we have to make sure we can afford the latest shoes , bags and coats. That far exceed the amounts we find acceptable to pay. But peer pressure means we are forced in to buying them, to keep our children socially accepted.

Or do we?  Is it not merely the fact that children are more apt at making us feel like parenting failures since we have become more conscious of active parenting?

I really did not have any paid hobbies that lasted. Mainly because my mother was too worried about paying for the food, electric and mortgage etc. When did things change to the point that we now have to worry about finding money for horse riding lessons, swimming lessons, Brownies or scouts?

With the economical change we are in. We need to collectively join as parents and say enough is enough. We want practical and quality clothing over frail made fashion clothing. We need reasonably priced hobbies. Why should parents pay for the latest Play station 3 games , when books are a far better education and cheaper.

Do not feel you have to provide ridiculous non essentials. The pressure is not worth trying to keep up. Teach your child to deal with money and save for things. Spend time in the park instead of shoving them in front of a game station.

Your opinion on today's children!

What are today's children like as a general group?

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So , what can we do about this?

I think we should all start realising that the amount of money you throw at your children , whether you can afford it or not. Does not make a good parent.

Start introducing cheaper hobbies for your children. Show them where their local library is, where you can take books out to borrow.

Support your local wildlife trusts by taking children to walk around lakes and parks.

Make them wear clothes that are durable , and not useless items of flimsy clothing. Non labeled clothes are far cheaper. Or buy second hand. Somewhere like Or charity shops.

Eat together and have a proper balanced meal. This way the children get their vegetables and you get to make a meal cheaper.

Shop around. Do not buy stuff for them the first place they see something. I may not be the cheapest for that item.

Reduce how often they get sweets from the shop on their way home from school. They will only blame you for weight issues later in life.


Submit a Comment
  • Ddraigcoch profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from UK

    I am glad your parenting paid off for you and your children. I hope I am as successful with mine when they hit adulthood. Thank you for your support and message.x

  • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

    Zsuzsy Bee 

    8 years ago from Ontario/Canada

    I was a single parent of three and worked many, many hours just to make sure that my children had everything their peers had. I found that guilt (having made the choice to throw their father out... long story) makes a very hard task master. Well I survived and my children became amazing upstanding adults so in the long run it was worth it all...

    great hub

    regards Zsuzsy

  • Ddraigcoch profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from UK

    I think it is great that people still do not waste. It will be a great skill to pass to our children in years to come.

  • Granny's House profile image

    Granny's House 

    8 years ago from Older and Hopefully Wiser Time

    I agree with cobrien. I had five kids. I never bought them something just because they wanted it or to keep up with the Jones. You want it. Work for it

  • rachelsholiday profile image


    8 years ago

    What a great hub! I was raised on a "shoestring" budget. I didn't own a single new article of clothing until I was 13! We ate a lot of beans, haha. I feel that that lifestyle prepared me better for where I'm at now (as a poor college student) than my husbands more affluent upbringing.

  • Dolores Monet profile image

    Dolores Monet 

    8 years ago from East Coast, United States

    I raised my kids while being very thrifty. They learn what you teach and by how you live. They were a happy, energetic bunch (4 of them) and enjoyed playing with rocks and sticks more than with store bought toys. They've grown to be thrifty adults, more interested in life, in doing things, in being with friends and family more than in the material world. Great advise, D!

  • Ddraigcoch profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from UK

    I completely agree with you Pamela N Red. Mine only get the same reasons you have mentioned. Some parents just do not see the damage they are doing in spoiling these kids with materialism.

  • Pamela N Red profile image

    Pamela N Red 

    8 years ago from Oklahoma

    Luckily wearing vintage clothes are in. Having the latest electronics gadget has to wait for birthday or Christmas and even then they might not get it if it's too high.

    Now is when they have to learn the value of money.

  • profile image

    Fay Paxton 

    8 years ago

    Welcome to HubPages Draigcoch. This is a very interesting hub with great parental advice. I'm going to follow you so I can see what other interesting tidbits you come up with.

    vated up and useful

  • kashmir56 profile image

    Thomas Silvia 

    8 years ago from Massachusetts

    Hi Ddraigcoch, Sometimes kids may not understand that you must pay for the most important things first, but has cobrien said Walmart's best or Goodwill is a great place to find kids close at a great value !

    Welcome to Hubpages !!!

  • Ddraigcoch profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from UK

    Thank you for your comments. At least I do not feel as though I stand alone in thinking fashion is useless.

  • TPSicotte profile image


    8 years ago from The Great White North

    A lot of kids get their materialism from their parents and peers. If we share our values and that is not who we are the our kids will be prepared when it hits them later in life. Letting them know that a lot of name brand stuff is just a way to fool kids and parents into spending more money than they need. Things don't make you who you are anyway but the consumer culture is here to stay so as parents we ca only do our best and not get sucked in.

  • Moon Willow Lake profile image

    Moon Willow Lake 

    8 years ago

    My little guy is yet too young for me to really be struggling with a lot of this, but I know it will come all too soon. What I can say is that we already talk to him about things like this, do what we can to lead by example, and we put zero effort into the latest fashions. We will teach him how little fashion means in life and very much hope he will understand through our example. As far as the candy part, we already really limit that by not allowing any more than 1 or 2 pieces per day at most and then only after meals. We don't even purposefully buy any candy either and anything we have is because we got it as gifts. As far as the rest goes, we'll have to cross those bridges as we come to them.

  • Ddraigcoch profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from UK

    Thank you cobrien. I have added another section also now.

  • cobrien profile image

    Colleen O'Brien 

    8 years ago from Florida

    I don't really understand what the problem is. It's human nature to want what you can't have. Your kids can't "make" you feel any way. You control your feelings by controlling your thoughts.

    I am a widowed mother of four with nothing more than my GED. I never had money. My kids learned the value of hard work and money when they earned the money to buy their PS2s and games. I come from a "money town", Naples, Florida and all the kids are wearing Walmart's best, so don't let the kids fool you. Goodwill has a boutique section where you will find expensive brand juniors clothes.

    Good luck to you.


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