When to Give -- and When Not to Give -- Financial Help to Your Teen

Take this quiz to find out how to keep your daughter's best interests in mind when dealing with money.

These handy little questions ought to help you decide when giving or not giving is in your daughter's best interest and will or won't curb her growth, maturity, and independence.

The Giving Benchmark
1. Is my daughter moving forward in life? Yes No
2. Does she have a direction and a goal? Yes No
3. Is she exhibiting responsible behavior? Yes No
4. Is she trying to be self-supporting? Yes No
5. Is she at least moderately established on her own? Yes No

If you racked up five in the yes column, giving large or small gifts probably won't corrupt your daughter or turn her around into a financial dependent. A "No" to any question requires more prudent giving.

The Benchmark for Not Giving
1. Is my daughter floundering and directionless? Yes No
2. Is my daughter still trying to find herself? Yes No
3. Is my daughter underachieving? Yes No
4. Is my daughter unable to hold a job? Yes No
5. Does my daughter look for handouts? Yes No

If your checkmarks are predominantly in the yes category, giving indiscriminately will prolong your daughter's dependency and her habit of financially relying on you. Therefore, not giving might be in her best interest.

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