Okay. So crowdsourcing wisdom is just another way of saying Reader Comments on an issue that cuts close to many of our hearts and pocketbooks. Often, though, those comments are more than passing remarks. They carry kernals of wisdom based on years of experience. So here is commentary from my readers responding to Michele Singletary's advice on when to cut the financial aid to adult children and from those who responded to a New York Times article calling for tips on managing household finances--with loans/gifts to family members eliciting commentary from two readers.
First up: General advice from a New York Times reader on financial assists, whether it's your kin or someone else in need:
“If you do give money to someone, you have no right to dictate what they do with it....This principle works for all kinds of donations. If I decide to give money to a family member, a person experiencing homelessness, or an institution, I have decided to trust their judgment, and I never think about it again.”
From a Parenting Grown Children reader responding to Michele Singletary's comment that, if you give to an adult child, the giving should help push that child toward financial independence:
"I like the quote from Singletary. Every child and every situation is different. We can cut those cords but sometimes we need to tape them back together for a short while in order to keep our children making forward progress."
While this reader doesn't address lending money to adult children per se, her comments could apply across the board. She wrote to the New York Times to say that when she was 10 years old, she lent a nickel to a classmate in Sunday school, and never got it back.
“I decided that I would never loan money to anyone again. I’m nearly 65 and I’ve kept my vow. I only give money away. I let people know it’s a gift and nothing is owed, in any manner. And I do it with a smile and graciously.”