Raffle Tickets.

We all get approached to buy them. From anyone and from everyone. Some people we know and some people we don ‘t know. It’s usually a small ticket item, $1 or $2 maximum.

It’s the old “what goes around, comes around” theory. Someday, sooner or later, you will be selling them or your son/daughter will become the seller. Recognizing that fact, I always take the big picture view and buy one or two from whoever is selling them. Even if I’ve never met the person before. How bad can you go at a buck or two. If they have the guts and the drive to go to a total stranger and come ask, I’m buying.

There IS one exception. I DO NOT buy from my son or daughter. Sound cruel, or mean, or even child abuse? Let me explain with an example.

Last weekend my daughter is running around stressed to the max. Why? Her 50 tickets that she was supposed to sell for her senior ball fundraiser did not sell. Why they didn’t sell was totally a lack of effort on her part. So, it’s crunch time and she goes to mom first and asks if she’ll buy 20. Next, dad, will you buy 20 with the “generous offer” that she’ll even put in her own 10 bucks to get them all “sold”.

Mind you she has had 3 months to sell the tickets. Mind you the Sr. Ball is her favorite event and has been talked about for at least 6 months, if not a whole year. Mind you, my daughter found PLENTY OF TIME to go spend god knows how much on a dress she’ll probably never wear again. And the tickets…. although we reminded her more than once to get selling them… not a single one sold!

So….. how many of you would bail your son/daughter out and buy from them? I chose to NOT BUY them.

In my daughters eye, I was a jerk. I was mean. I was cheap. It’s her Sr. ball.. how could I not help her out in her time of “crisis”? How would she face her classmates knowing she “couldn’t “ sell her allotment. Boo-hoo.

Those were her questions. Here are mine……

What do we teach our kids if we constantly bail them out, of a problem. A problem they were 100% responsible for?
Are we teaching them it’s ok to be lazy, and mom and dad will solve all your issues?
Are we suggesting to them it’s ok to wait until the last minute, and then deal with crisis management?
What value of a dollar are we teaching them if we just hand them $10-20-40 dollars like it’s a quarter?
Are we teaching them life is all FUN….. planning parties, pictures and buying beautiful dresses, but don t worry about doing the “hard stuff” like selling a few raffle tickets?

Perhaps a little humility in front of her peers, that she couldn’t sell the 50 tickets would do her some good?
Perhaps the extra money she has to put up, out of her own paycheck, will teach her about the cost of a dollar?

Today, my daughter is mad at me( and really herself). Five years from now, perhaps she’ll THANK ME, and encourage her offspring to go sell and SELL EARLY.

Buy raffle tickets from ANYONE. Anyone but your son or daughter. Let’s stop ENABLEING and start PARENTING.

(Feel free to comment back at creator@smile-therapy.com)

Author's Bio: 

TA Smith is the founder and creator of Smile-Therapy.com
A graduate of UMASS, Amherst.
A former Dale Carnegie graduate.
Smith loves to golf, ski, read, walk his chocolate labs, and listen to jazz and country music.
Smith's motto: Work hard, have fun, help others and make people SMILE.