My Daughter, A Shopping Mall Trip, and A Scary Situation

EOD_ShoppingI had a scary situation with my teenaged daughter over the weekend with what happened during a shopping trip to the mall with her friends. It was touch and go for a few days, but I’m now confident that everything is going to be just fine.

One of her friends asked her to go to the mall shopping on Friday afternoon. Between her allowance and Christmas gifts she had amassed a tidy sum of money.ย  She thought a shopping trip to get some new clothes would be a fun way to spend time with her friend.

When she returned home from the mall, she told us a frightening story.

She excitedly showed her mother and I the things that she had purchased, then went on to tell us that there was another shirt she had seen that she liked but she didn’t bring enough money along to purchase it. She also told us that she had wanted to get some new mascara, but again, she had to wait because she didn’t bring enough money with her.

As a parent, I was almost sick with worry about my daughter.

That was three days ago, and I’ve been watching her closely. This morning, as she bounced her way out the door to school I’m happy to report that I think despite not getting everything she wanted, I sincerely believe she is going to be OK.

Despite not getting the shirt she had liked, she was able to dress herself appropriately each and every day with clothes she already had. It appears that she has more than enough clothes in her closet.

Despite not getting new mascara, she came down the stairs today with her usual light application of makeup. It seems her old mascara wasn’t quite gone yet.

Knowing that she is going to be OK is a huge relief.

The thing that completely blew my mind is that it wasn’t that my daughter didn’t have the money to purchase these items, she consciously chose to limit herself. She set a spending limit for her shopping trip and only took along that much cash. She didn’t want to leave herself broke in case another opportunity arose that would require some funds. She deliberately set a spending limit on herself, resulting in having to leave things she wanted on the store shelves.

Limiting spending? Thinking ahead? Depriving themselves from things they want? Do people actually live like this?

If you haven’t figured it out yet, this post is rich with sarcasm. It may sound absurd, but sometimes it’s worth reminding ourselves that we will be OK if we can’t buy everything we want. Life will go on if we set spending limits on ourselves, live within our means, and keep some money in our pockets for potential future needs.

The next time you’re standing in a store aisle contemplating purchasing something, think of my daughter and how she survived not buying everything she wanted. You will too.

About Travis

10 Responses to “My Daughter, A Shopping Mall Trip, and A Scary Situation”

Read below or add a comment...

  1. Glad to hear everything is okay! ๐Ÿ™‚ isn’t it great when you see your children make great choices? Even better when its with money. I had a similar shopping experience with all three of my children and a trip to the mall. They all made great decision with cash in their pockets, all purchased new clothes and came home with money to spare.

  2. LOVE this, Travis!!! So many parents (and kids) act as if their kids don’t get whatever they want they’ll be damaged for life. We’ve actually found the opposite. We work to teach them that life isn’t about having stuff, and as such they work to have the freedom that comes with no debt and a plush savings account instead. Wonderful stuff!

    • Travis says:

      Real life is filled with having to set priorities and not getting everything you want. The sooner kids learn that, and how to deal with it the better. Thanks for stopping by, Laurie!

  3. You had me there! I thought you were going to say that some creepy man approached your daughter and her friend . . . Glad that didn’t happen. And how great to see our kids handling money with (in my case) more wisdom than we did at their age.

    • Travis says:

      Haha, I sucked you in to the story! ๐Ÿ™‚ My kids are definitely learning some skills and dealing with some situations that I never encountered when I was young. Great to hear from you!

  4. Tonya says:

    ha ha ha! At first I was like, “huh??” but then I totally got it. Hey it’s 6am as I’m reading this. Too funny though. I think people in general think this way, not just teenage girls!

  5. I had to read the first paragraph twice to “get it.”
    I would say you’re doing a great job. Your daughter is officially better with money than more than half of America. Welcome to adulthood, little one! We don’t always get what we want, and that’s okay! =)

Leave a Comment...


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.