Associated Press
Michelle Davis, right, helps her children shop for a backpack at Crabtree Valley Mall in Raleigh, N.C., Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2006.

Often times, parents tell their children they can't afford to buy something but buy something else. Why don't parents just tell children the truth?

"When you say you can't afford something when you really can, you're missing the opportunity to talk about priorities or trade-offs," Stuart Ritter, a vice president at T. Rowe Price and father of three, told Reuters. "Kids are perceptive, and I think we underestimate their readiness to learn this stuff, and their ability to pick up on what you and I are doing."

Parents struggle so badly with the topic that they lie or avoid talking about money with their children altogether, according to a study released in late March titled the "Parents, Kids & Money Survey." According to the survey, about one-third of parents said they stay away from talking to their kids about money.

It's not just that parents aren't talking to their kids about money, but when they do, they're dishonest. According to the survey, 77 percent of parents said they aren't always honest with their children about money, and 32 percent reported they tell their children they can't afford something when they really can.

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