The Enablers

In the world of banking, the people on the front lines of the industry are known as tellers. These are the people who are expected to help customers with all of their day to day banking needs. It is often a thankless and miserable position to hold. These are their stories. These are their legends…

Bank Teller 4I know I’ve complained before about people who don’t keep track of their accounts. I wouldn’t get upset about it, but it’s simple addition and subtraction. Someone with the education of a 2nd grader should be able to balance a checkbook. This post’s complaint comes in the form of a woman who shall henceforth and forevermore be known as Mama Idiot. She has two Idiot children, Brother Idiot and Sister Idiot. They’re like the Berenstain Bears, except they’re idiots.

This one time, Mama Idiot came into the bank to deposit money into Brother Idiot’s checking account. Apparently, Brother Idiot was a college student who used his debit card without checking to see if there was any real money to back it up. And every time that debit card was used without the money to back it up, there was a $35 charge from the bank. Pretty standard, really. So, Mama Idiot, being the enabler she was, loaded money into Brother Idiot’s account to take care of the fees.

Fast forward, roughly a month. Mama Idiot returned. Sister Idiot’s account was in the negative. By a lot. Same problem. Same solution.

This message is for Mama Idiot, and for any other enabling parent that feels the need to bail their kids out of every jam they get themselves into. Don’t. Okay? Just don’t give them money whenever they over spend. Let the bank go after them. Let them have a bad credit score. It’s the only way they’re really going to learn from their mistakes. If you throw money at the problem every time they overdraw their accounts, then in the future, they’ll be conditioned to know that Mama Idiot will step in and fix everything.

Look, I know this is harsh. A parent’s natural instinct is to rush in and help their children when they’re in trouble. But sometimes you have to let them fail. A bird doesn’t learn to fly and find its own food by hanging out in the nest and letting its mother regurgitate worms for its entire life. And parents whose kids have not reached the age where they can screw up their bank accounts, just remember, they’re watching you. Kids learn spending habits from watching their parents. All I’m saying.

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2 thoughts on “The Enablers

  1. My mom works at a bank, and while she could get a fee waved for me, the feeling of being in the negative is terrifying to me. I think if Momma Idiot had helped her kids once, that would be okay, but sometimes tough love is necessary!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, I’m guessing this will be a difficult tasks for any parent. My kids are only 11 and 9, and I have them saving their own allowance to buy things to learn the value of money. However, I got one that won’t spend a dime or very little, but when he has necessity later on (like food, and utilities) I wonder if he’ll get it. He’s kind of clueless, well, short term memory (DCD disorder). So, he’s capable, but it will take hard work. Then my 9 year old daughter loves to spend her cash! She’s very aware of what she has and sees things on sale-bargain hunter. Yet, part of me thinks she’ll always spend what she has with no rainy day reserve. I think it’s going to be a challenge to parent both of them on this in different ways. One incredibly savvy, understanding budgets, but won’t have self-discipline. The other, kinda being clueless on how budgeting works. What, I didn’t spend anything so why don’t I have enough money? Yes, I’m worried.

    Liked by 1 person

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