I want to do the right thing- new stage

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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 12:23 pm
My daughter is starting to notice and compare herself with other girls more and more.
She is 8 years old.
We live frugally and within our means ie she has what she needs in a middle of the road level but we are not fancy.
Yesterday she cried about not having pretty school supplies (not that we bought hers yet, she just got her list) and even kids you would think dont have fancy school supplies all do and she doesn't want to get her school supplies in the discount shop near where we live she wants to go to the main avenue and buy in the toys and stationary store etc.
Im unsure how to navigate all of this.
On the one hand, I don't want her to feel like a nebach on the other hand is this a slippery slope? How much do you give in to the "everyone has/does/wears" narrative so that your child feels socially " normal"? How can I cultivate confidence in what she does have etc?
How/When/ under what circumstances would I discuss budget or affording things without her feeling anxious about money or like we're poor? Or should this never be discussed?

Thanks for your advice!
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 12:26 pm
Children's claims of "everybody" having something are often exaggerated.

Make a compromise.

Make an estimate of how much supplies cost in the discount store and add a few dollars (5?)
and tell DD she can pick a FEW cool items at the stationary school.

Last edited by #BestBubby on Thu, Sep 10 2020, 12:29 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 12:28 pm
Personally, I would talk to her and explain to her that she can pick 1 or 2 nice things and the rest have to be from the budget place and remind her that she can pick out from the budget place also- they have some cute stuff.

That way she can have a few (whatever is in your budget) things that are really nice that she likes but she doesn't need to get everything fancy.

Let her decide what the most important item is and if you can have her be involved in the buying of the cheap stuff also- she can pick the things she likes best
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 12:35 pm
Can you try some active listening. Hear her out fully without giving opinions or commentary. Just some I hear or how do you feel to edge her own. It might come out that there are 1 or 2 items she really cares about. But it’s hard to articulate so it comes out as everything. It may not end up being as complicated. And she may even have the solution in her.
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 12:36 pm
The first time my son did this and said "everybody has it" I asked him to list all the boys who had that particular item. He was only able to list 3 boys out of a class of 25. I usually dont give in but do occasionally. Like if they have a whole list of supplies they are able to pick out one folder or looseleaf that is in style while everything else is discount store.
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 12:39 pm
Why is she crying about not having pretty supplies if you haven't bought them yet?
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 9:41 pm
She needs an allowance so she can spend above what you would to get the nice stuff. It is very important for a girl to fit in BUT be very careful to not let her get the idea she gets because others have, it is that she gets because she likes pretty things and supplements it herself because you are responsible with money. I would just go with now that you are in 3rd grade....allowance.
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 10:01 pm
It is indeed a road to be carefully navigated because you don't want your child to be the nebach but you also don't want to get into a pattern of having her feel that her worth is based on material possessions that others might envy.

I think the posts regarding giving her a shopping allowance might work so long as she is of an age where she can actually comprehend numbers translating into money. My mother used to do this for my niece when she would visit in terms of giving her an allowance to buy clothing. Now obviously the clothing my mother bought her was not necessary but it was pretty funny for us to watch how frugal she became when she was spending her gift money. LOL

Is there really a huge difference in price between various items? Especially at the beginning of the school year, there might be accessories like fancy pencils or whatever that are fairly inexpensive especially if you buy them on-line.
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 10:10 pm
Really depends on where you lives and what the social pressure is like. My daughter once told me that “everybody” had something. I asked her who “everybody” was. She listed almost everyone on the class and all of her good friends were included. I believe in buying the cute supplies. This is what they are doing their schoolwork with and I want them to have positive feelings toward their school work. I remember one girl from my 4th grade class had the cutest markers. I remember everything about them- (this was 35 years ago!) but the girl who had them doesn’t remember at all
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 11:36 pm
I told my kids that this year I am not buying anything if we already have it at home. I did say I will buy a new backpack for a kid who was using the same backpack for the previous 4 years. I had a stockpile of stuff from buying on sale and from the kids not using last year's supplies. One kid needed a 'small notebook'. I didn't know if they meant a homework pad or an actual small journal sized thing so we got the journal sized at Dollar Tree. They had a lot of cute supplies and some original brand stuff like White Out among their private label stuff. If having 'cute' stuff is important to her they had it for reasonable prices.
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Post  Thu, Sep 10 2020, 11:42 pm
I think it depends very much on the child. If your kids has a low self esteem, or struggles with friends or doesn't have much confidence then I would get her more of what she wants than if she were a confident child with lots of friends. Know your child and then draw the line appropriately for her. Thinks that almost everybody has, get... Things that some people have, sometimes get...
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