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To Bribe Or Not To Bribe? Survey Finds Nearly 50 Percent Of Parents Bribe Kids For Good Behavior

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Many parents are guilty of bribing their children with cash in exchange for good behavior, but is it an effective parenting strategy?

As CBS 2’s Cindy Hsu reported, a new survey by T. Rowe Price‎ finds nearly 50 percent of parents admit to bribing their kids with money to encourage good behavior.

“I wouldn’t call it a bribe. I feel that’s a way to reward them,” said mother of two Amy Chiang.

“I don’t think bribing kids with money for good grades or anything is appropriate,” said mother Shaunte Wyatt.

Psychologist Dr. Jeffrey Gardere told Hsu bribing for good behavior can be a slippery slope.

“In the short-term it works. In the long-term it can be very destructive because the child will expect money for everything that they do and that’s not how society works,” he said.

Gardere added that if money works to motivate your child, it’s OK, but that parents should use it sparingly for things like “grades, getting your child to read more and chores.”

He said it’s better to find other ways to reward good behavior.

Callum Johnson is in high school and said his parents use fun events to encourage good grades.

“Nice dinner, party maybe with your friends,” he said.

Other parents said they keep things in check with a weekly allowance.

“If he does something that’s not appropriate, he will get his allowance taken away from him,” said one parent.

Vera Batichev is a new mom and said she’s not so sure she’d ever bribe her son with cash, but you never know.

“I don’t know if I would do that, but never say never we’ll see kind of,” she said.

No matter how you feel about using cash to motivate your kids, financial experts say you should talk early and often to your children about the value of money and saving it.

The survey also found more than 80 percent of parents say games are a good way to teach kids about money.

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