The Powdered Butt Syndrome

It's a sensitive subject that BJ wants to talk to his parents about, and it involves the powdered butt syndrome.

QUESTION: BJ wants to talk with his parents about money, since they are close to retirement age. He’s worried about the powdered butt syndrome, because once a person has powdered your butt, they don’t want advice about money or sex. Dave explains to him exactly how to get around that.

ANSWER: There are a couple of things at work here. First, you need to understand what you are dealing with when you try to talk to your parents about money. It’s very awkward for parents to take money advice from kids. I found that it’s actually helpful to say out loud that it’s an awkward situation before engaging in an awkward situation.

The second thing is that you don’t want to go in and tell them what they need to do. You are much better off to go in there and tell them what you are doing, what success you’re having, and how you feel differently because of it. Talk about how you don’t fight with your spouse about money anymore and how you are making progress. Talk about how good your life is, and when they talk about how worried they are, then say it’s awkward to talk about this, then talk about it. You are not there to condemn them; you are just there to say you found a plan that works, and you can show them how to do it. Keep it low on the instruction side and show by example.