This months focus at NFI is Dad Cents, and our plan is to give dads sound advice about ways that dads can improve their kids financial literacy.
Since I worked in banking, this area is near and dear to my heart. Indeed, I often use financial lingo when I am discussing fatherhood principles. For example, I talk about how important it is to invest in your childs life and how critical it is for dads to make regular, substantial, and consistent deposits in their childrens relationship bank accounts. After all, chances are that one day like when a daughter wants to date a junior member of the Hells Angels or a son wants to tattoo the name of his most recent girlfriend across his forehead you may have to make a huge withdrawal. Frankly, if you have not made these deposits, the conversation could sound something like this
(SceneYou rush into the lobby of the 'First National Bank of Your 15-year-old Daughters Heart' and quickly approach her window.)
Your Daughter: Good afternoon. How may I help you?
You: Hi. I need make a big withdrawal fast!
Your Daughter: Ok, sir. No problem. Could you please let me see some ID?
(You hand her a copy of her birth certificate where you are listed as Father.)
Your Daughter: Everything looks in order, Dad. Please wait just a minute while I check your account.
(She turns away from you but then gets a strange look on her face.)
You: Is there a problem?
Your Daughter: Yes, sort of. I clearly see that you opened an account here a long time ago, but it doesnt appear to have a sufficient balance for you to make a big withdrawal. When was the last time that you made a deposit?
You: Well, I dont remember. I guess its been a while. You know, I have been very busy working and stuff like that. But, my wife has been making lots of deposits. Seems like every time I turn around she is heading here. Since we are married, cant I just make a withdrawal from her account?
Your Daughter: Dad, no you cant because we dont offer joint accounts here.
You: Oh yeah Thats right I remember hearing that. What about a loan? Can I get one of those?
Your Daughter: Im sorry We dont offer loans either. You can only withdraw what you have deposited.
(You start to get a bit upset )
You: Well that just doesnt seem fair! I clearly have an account. And, well, I need to make a withdrawal. Cant you make an exception? After all, I am DAD.
Your Daughter: Dad. I am sorry. I just cant help you...
(You are becoming more upset )
You: Well, doggone it, I am not going to take no for answer.
(Your daughter gets a concerned and stern look on her face and you can see her reaching under the counter to push the button for security.)
Your Daughter: As I said, I cant help you. You knew the rules when you opened the account. How can you expect to withdraw funds that you didnt deposit? Thats just not the way it works here. All you had to do was make consistent deposits. Even small ones would have been fine because interestyour interestwould have compounded these deposits substantially over time. Taking deposits that dont belong to you is, well, robbery. So, I need to ask you to leave now. Or, do I need to call security?