$10 For Losing a Tooth! How Much Should the Tooth Fairy Pay?
Let's talk about the Tooth Fairy...gone mad. My daughters, Eileen and Bridget, are losing their baby teeth. Like most of their friends and classmates who are five or six-years-old... (the girls turn six later this month), they have a gap or two in their smiles these days as their baby teeth begin to fall out. One of Eileen's front teeth has been hanging by a string for several days and, even though she was chewing on her back teeth to avoid the the wiggler, last night's dinner was the final straw. Pssswosh... out came the tooth, right on the dinner table.
Before we could even clean the tooth gook residue off the table, the subject of the Tooth Fairy came up. The girls have a friend in summer camp (I'll call him Matt to protect the identity of a six-year-old) who has been bragging about getting $10 from the Tooth Fairy for his recent lost tooth.
Eileen wanted to know if she would be getting $10 for her tooth, too. And, why is it that she only got $1 for her last lost tooth?
I tried to make a joke and to change the subject as quickly as possible, but these kids are pretty sharp and they aren't likely to forget about Matt's $10 tooth.
I realized that parenting can be an individual endeavor and different parents have different ideas of how to do things... but are you kidding me giving a 5-year-old ten bucks for a tooth falling out? That's $200 for a mouth full of lost baby teeth!
Let me give you my opinion. Not only does this spoil a child who is too young to have any idea of the value of money, but it affects all the rest of us as well. When Matt brags to his friends about his $10 tooth, other parents have to wrestle with upping the ante to stay even with Matt or giving our kids a more reasonable amount and then explaining to the child why their tooth was only worth $1.00.
We decided to up our tooth payout to $2.00, which still leaves our Tooth Fairy looking cheap next to Matt's. This decision also created the additional problem of explaining why this tooth is worth 2 bucks when the last one was only good for a dollar. Thanks a lot, Matt's Tooth Fairy!
Parents, what do you suggest? How much should the Tooth Fairy give per tooth? How did you handle this situation in your family? Can we all agree on an reasonable amount and then stick with it?
I would like to hear your thoughts in the comments section below. Signed, a frustrated tooth fairy.