Since a lot of children don’t understand the concept of delayed satisfaction, they behave in a selfish way – they ask parents to buy this and that for them constantly. How can you handle that? (When it comes to international dating, this is a frequently asked question from men who are married to Eastern European women – sometimes it’s their second marriage, so they have a blended family with several children.)

  • Reward good behavior with activities rather than objects.

In educational psychology, positive reinforcement means whenever your child shows good behavior, you give your child a reward. This is a way to reinforce the child’s good behavior. For example, your son has been on his best behavior recently, you reward him extra stories at bedtime this weekend or another trip to the park on Sunday. Remember: you don’t have to reward him with objects. In this way, he won’t equate rewards with material things automatically.

  • Give a heads-up in advance.

If you don’t plan to buy your child anything when you go to the shopping mall, clarify that in advance please. When you are still on your way to the shopping mall, you can say this to your child, “We will only buy shoes today, not toys.” Remember to repeat this when you enter the shopping mall. It’s very important to set limits and stick to them!

  • What if this is your second marriage and now you have a blended family?

A second marriage might have a more complicated situation. But there are many things you can do to manage children in this regard. First and most importantly, parents must be on the same page. Set realistic rules and present the plan to kids. Having one set of rules and being consistent could help you manage children in a blended family effectively. You have to be crystal clear, purposeful and intentional. In the second place, you would be well-advised to have a family meeting regularly. Invite children to attend the family meeting so that they feel they are also responsible for the household. Make decisions at the meeting and stick with that.

  • How to combine finances as a couple

In general, there are three ways to combine finances as a couple. But there isn’t a perfect way. Please let me explain: Three common ways to combine finances –

  1. The Proportional Approach

Couples who use this approach each contributes to the household expenses at a rate which is proportional to their salary. Let’s say Alex makes $4,000 per month (66% of the total household income) & Ann makes $2,000 per month (33% of the total household income). That means Alex pays 66% of their monthly bills, whereas Ann pays 33% of their monthly bills.

2. The Raw Contribution Approach

Couples who prefer this approach each contribute the same raw number, no matter how much money they make per month. For example, Andrew makes $3,000 per month; Lily makes $4,500 per month. Their monthly bills come to $3,000. They each contribute $1,500 and keep the rest of their money in separate bank accounts.

3. The Complete Combine Approach

Couples who choose this approach pay monthly bills from the same bank account, use joint bank cards only and have shared long-term investments. For instance, Darren makes $5,000 per month; Lisa makes $2,500 per month. Both paychecks go to one joint bank account which is used to pay all monthly bills.

  • How to discuss this sensitive topic when you decide to combine your finances:

During the discussion, you will need to cover these things:

  • A list of bank accounts to combine;
  • A budget;
  • How much is too much to spend without asking for the other person’s opinion;
  • Should you combine all bank accounts or merely some bank accounts?

“Please note that different countries have different legal systems. The advice in this article is for general information only; the information is provided in order to help people who are interested in international dating.”