dollars and sense

This Daughter's Hilarious Reaction To Her Mom's Budgeting Lesson Is Too Real

Each kid was asked to make a budget with a hypothetical income of $3,000 a month.

One mom is going viral on TikTok after taking matters into her own hands with her children and teach...
@The__Ariel_B / TikTok

Parents send their kids to school to learn the basics, right? From the ABCs to AP English, there is no question that the average American academic curriculum certainly has an impact on who they are later in life.

However, there are so many vital life skills that could be taught in school (or are, but on a very small scale) that would greatly benefit kids in adulthood that aren’t often taught in school like cooking, knowing how to do taxes, health insurance 101, and of course, budgeting.

One mom on TikTok is taking matters into her own hands with her children and teaching them the valuable (and often sad) lesson of personal budgeting. She gave them a hypothetical $3,000 per month budget and allowed them to figure out how to how to live off of their “earnings.”

Ariel B (@The__Ariel_B) posted a video of her children learning some hard truths about adulthood, including money woes and how renting an apartment works. The mom of five and entrepreneur created her own online shop featuring budgeting worksheets and planners for those looking to get some order and perspective on their own money needs.

In the viral clip, Ariel begins to explain to her daughter that her rent is going to cost her $1,200 a month, but she’ll also need to pay a security deposit.

“They will need first, last, and security deposit,” Ariel says as her daughter looks at her with utter confusion.

“Why do they need last month rent if I wasn’t in there?” she asks her mom.

“You’re signing for a year,” Ariel replies, adding, “they just want to make sure you have the money to provide. You’re good with your money.”

Through laugher, Ariel’s daughter says, “But I still wasn’t here last month!”

Ariel explains to her daughter that “last month’s rent” actually means the last month of the rental year as opposed to the month prior to the renting agreement as well as why rental companies have tenets provide so much money upfront.

“Pay it for a full year, and we get the first month and the last month, you’ll make sure to stay because you already paid for it. You won’t leave us out in the wind to try to find another tenant. So make sure you stay,” Ariel says.

“Oh, God. What a scammer!” her daughter replies.

The young girl then moves onto her car budget, which she clearly believes is way too high for a “2010 car.”

She opts to ride a bike instead.

“That’s $60,” she says while looking through her budget worksheet.

Ariel replies, “You’re going to pedal to work every day? What if it’s raining? What about your child?”

“I’m not having kids!” her daughter says matter-of-factly.

Ariel then asks, “What are your views on adulthood?”

“I’m in debt already ... I have nothing ... Where did my freedom go? Where did my friends go? Where does this say, ‘Got money for friends’?” she asks while motioning to her budget worksheet.

“I have nothing. I have no money at all, and I don’t know what to do about it.”

While some could argue that there’s no reason to get a child all worked up about adulthood and money and the future while they’re still so young, there is definitely something to say about giving kids a glimpse into the harsh realities of life — especially in a capitalistic society with inflation and housing costs continually on the rise.

Just one of these lessons on budgeting could help get a child’s mind in a space to understand and appreciate their parents, their current state of living, and work to give them a sense of drive and build work ethic so they don’t have to worry so much about first and last month’s rent or how they’re going to get to work.

Ariel’s video — which now has over 7.5 million views and over 1 millions likes — caught the attention of so many TikTok users who saw the humor in Ariel’s daughter’s pretend money dilemmas but also applauded the money-savvy mom on introducing her kids to the world of budgeting.

“I love this because my parents didn’t teach me anything I had to learn it all on my own,” one user wrote.

“I went through this with my kid gurrrl she could not believe how that income goes down…. Now she is evaluating every career path asking $$,” another said.

One user chimed in and said, “they need to teach this on school. Economics!!”

Another joked, “I know this game. It’s called Monopoly: ultra realistic edition.”

One user suggested that after Ariel finishes her lesson with the kids on basic budgeting, she should move onto other seriously misunderstood financial topics.

“i would love to see the lessons on building credit. do your thing Queen making KINGS and QUEENS,” they wrote.

In another video, Ariel explained why she decided to be intentional about teaching her children the realities of money in adulthood.

“Does anyone else have kids that think money grows on trees with it being summer break?” she asked in a voice-over. “They want to do something fun, every single day no matter the price.

“We did not talk about money or finances in my household growing up, and I knew, as a mother, that was the one thing I wanted to change. I want to see if my kids can balance their life on an average minimum wage income.”

While the internet may have have their own opinions on how a parent teaches their kid to budget, science is backing up Ariel.

A 2022 study from BYU discovered that children who learn how to properly manage their money from their parents actually go on to have more fulfilling relationships with their significant others as young adults.

The study surveyed nearly 2,000 participants between the ages of 18 and 30 in romantic relationships. Those who indicated learning financial literacy from parents during their youth tended to enjoy a more flourishing romantic relationship as they entered adulthood.

If parents successfully teach their children about money, those children are more likely to have a healthier relationship with money and have healthy financial behaviors like saving and budgeting. These healthy money habits lead to less stress about money, which puts less pressure on a relationship.

According to a study done at the University of Denver, 36.1% of divorces occur due to some sort of issue with finances.

“The kind of people that are careful with their money and put effort into it are also the kind of people who are careful and put effort into their relationships,” said Dr. Ashley LeBaron-Black, BYU professor of family life and lead author of the study.

“Doing daily acts of nurturing to keep a relationship healthy is similar to doing regular things like budgeting to keep financial health strong.”

So not only is Ariel working to raise kids who know the value of a dollar, but she’s also setting them up for success in their personal lives. Way to go, mom!