One of the great challenges of family wealth is raising children. And one of the best articles I’ve read on the topic (and I read a lot of articles) is the first link below, and I urge anyone for whom this is an issue to read it in full.
It’s very important to be aware of the unintended consequences of our beliefs about wealth and the messaging we convey to our children about them. How we treat our children can often become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
For example, if we are fixated on controlling the family wealth for fear that our children may lose it, this conveys the message that we do not trust our children, and that can lead to them not putting sufficient trust in themselves to become good custodians of the family wealth. If we fear that wealth is toxic and can spoil our children and therefore we seek to hide it from them and not talk about it, that can lead them to pick up on the negative feelings and carry shame about being wealthy.
For most every vicious cycle, there is a corresponding virtuous cycle. If instead, we trust and empower our children, that in turn can lead to positive attitudes around the family wealth, which in turn can help them develop into effective custodians and contributors to society.
Consider This: What messages are you sending to your children about family wealth? What messages are you getting from your parents about family wealth? Have you ever sat down and shared this (now might be a good time)?
Further reading: https://www.forbes.com/sites/dennisjaffe/2021/11/03/a-guide-for-passing-down-your-wealth-harmful-and-helpful-assumptions/, http://www.campdenfb.com/article/did-great-great-great-grandpa-have-ipad-how-teach-your-children-wealth-responsibility, https://www.kiplinger.com/article/retirement/T065-C032-S014-raising-wealthy-kids-to-be-socially-responsible.html, https://qz.com/293849/how-baby-boomers-ruined-parenting-forever/
Actionable Generational Wealth Succession
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