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Nine-year-old taking money from her mom’s purse


My 9-year-old has been taking money from my purse. Despite my punishing her, she just did it again.



Stealing is not OK, and it indicates a serious lack of respect for other people’s property. Hopefully, when you confronted her about the missing money you did not ask her IF she took it. Instead, say you know that the money is gone and that since she took it, she will no longer have the privilege of _________. The next time she needs money, she is to come to you or her father for help in determining how she could earn the money. This is showing respect.

Choose a privilege that is meaningful to her, and make the time without it fit the severity and frequency of the behavior. Since this is not the first time she has stolen, the loss of the privilege will be longer than if​ it was a first-time offense.  Deliver the consequence by saying something like, “Since you stole, you will not be able to use your ____________for a week.”

Find out what she wanted the money for. If she no longer has it, she must replace it with birthday money or do chores to earn it back. She also needs to learn to respect other people’s property. This involves asking someone for his or her permission to touch their items before actually doing so.

A natural consequence of her stealing is that you have lost your trust in her. So she must stay in the common rooms of the house so you can keep an eye on her. She should be kept busy with chores and stay out of trouble. When you are at a store, she must stay with you at all times. She cannot go to friends’ homes because you are afraid that she will steal from them. She will have to work to rebuild your trust in order to move about more freely once again.