Is The Bad Economy Actually Good for Our Kids?

Is the bad economy actually good for our kids?

Will kids become less spoiled if their parents have less discretionary money to spend on them? Will less money to eat out and go out help families spend more time together at home?

Will the bad economy equal less spoiled children? Will families get unexpected fringe benefits — such as more family time — from a recession? Several bloggers I found recently online say “Yes!”

A blog on Free Range Kids floats the idea that if parents don’t have extra money lying around they are less likely to spoil their kids. Here’s the link to the blog. Here’s part of the blogger’s case:

Cagefreekids posted:

“Not that I want this to be a Great Depression. I hope it’s not. But if it is, I see kids emerging from their dens when their X-Boxes break and their parents can’t afford to replace them. I see kids dropping out of travel soccer, when their parents can’t afford the gas. I see kids figuring out how to retool their bikes and skates and maybe even their MP3 players when their parents can’t immediately buy them the newest, niftiest models.”

“…In other words, I see fancy toys and vacations and enrichment classes falling away. And the only thing left is…childhood ….”

“Still, it can be argued that affluence has been really miserable for our kids. Easy money — or easy enough money — bought them all the stuff they used to make and do on their own. Professionally built tree houses. Batting practice overseen by a private coach. Dance recitals with real roses and expensive costumes and a slick DVD at the end.”

Cagefree argues that without excess money kids will learn how to play again and life will be simpler.

An article on Crosswalk.com offers ‘Five Reasons A Recession Can Be a Good Thing,’ written by Steve Scalici, CFP of Treasure Coast Financial. His No. 1 reason:

“You’ll have more time to spend with your family. Research shows that recessions foster more family mealtimes – as the budget for other activities dries up. Meals eaten as a family tend to promote a healthier diet, fewer eating disorders, better communication, and a lower risk of teenage substance abuse. A simple way to connect with your kids is eating together as a family. This is easy to do when they’re little, but as kids get older, sports and other activities compete with the family mealtime.”

So, do you agree that a bad economy can be good families? Are you seeing changes in your spending affecting whether your children are less spoiled? Are you seeing any increases in family time due to less money to spend on eating out and going out?

Go to MomMania at the AJC website to post your thoughts.

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