Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter

Teen Voices on Money Matters: Part 4

Ahuvah Sofer with the Mesila Staff

We live in a close-knit society and are usually happy to lend cash to one another if need be. It’s all fine and good, but are we always displaying healthy boundaries and a strong sense of responsibility? When can things get patchy, or downright wrong? Teens share their experiences with borrowing and lending.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016


Photo: Shutterstock

Mesila & Mishpacha: Do you feel there’s a healthy attitude toward borrowing and lending among your friends? 

“For the most part, yes,” says Ayala, 18. “Most girls trust each other and are comfortable with both borrowing and lending. I’m not saying it’s perfect, girls do sometimes forget to pay back, but for the most part, the attitude is positive. 

“I like it that girls are comfortable about borrowing,” says Shiri, 16, “because if someone borrows from me one day, I feel comfortable borrowing from her the next. It’s sort of understood that we’re there for each other.” 

It’s beautiful that you girls have that perspective! Lending to someone in need is actually a form of chesed! 

M&M: It’s nice that your attitudes are positive and generous. But are boundaries ever crossed? When can things get a little sticky? 

“There’s one thing that really irks me,” says Faigy, 19. “And that’s when friends think my purse is public property. They’ll say something like, ‘I need five dollars. I’m taking it from you now, okay?’ I mean, doesn’t borrowing mean taking with permission? If not, isn’t it stealing?”

Photo: Shutterstock

“I have a different pet peeve,” adds Esti. “How about when a girl says, ‘Can you just lay out five dollars for me,’ and then never gives it back? Is it petty to be upset about it or expect someone to give back what you lent them, even if it’s just five dollars? 

“I feel like some girls turn into compulsive borrowers,” agrees Faigy, “and then when it comes to spending, they think that the sky is the limit.” 

“It definitely becomes much harder to remember to pay back if you’re always borrowing from everyone,” says Ayala. 

“I think,” adds Shaindel, 16, “that there’s a sensitivity issue here, also. People are so quick to borrow that they don’t consider that maybe their friends don’t have the money or they really need it, but still feel uncomfortable saying no.” 

What you girls are bringing up are legitimate concerns. Let’s not forget that crossing the line can mean stepping over boundaries of halachah. Borrowing irresponsibly can easily turn into stealing.

Related Stories

Money Matters

Ahuvah Sofer

Like it or not, money affects much of our lives. In a new series, Teen Pages teams up with Mesila to...

Pampering to Perfection

Lauren Ungar

“Tova, you’re always running to her. Bubby can be alone for an hour. You need to get out more and do...

Breakthrough: Chapter 39

Tovy Mann

The children are on their way to spend Shabbos with their parents at a mystery location, unaware the...

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.

Drink to Eternity
Rabbi Moshe Grylak Redemption doesn’t simply mean being let out of jail
Klal Yisrael Is Always Free
Yonoson Rosenblum "In that merit will Klal Yisrael continue to exist”
Home Free
Eytan Kobre My baseline for comparison is admittedly weak
Believe in Your Own Seder
Rabbi Judah Mischel Hashem is satisfied when we do our best
Picture Perfect
Yisroel Besser Take a picture — and this time, send it to yourself
Flying Solo
Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman As Pesach loomed closer, his resentment was growing
Hanging on by a Hair
Jacob L. Freedman MD “Do you still think that I’m not completely crazy?”
A Song for Every Season
Riki Goldstein Influencers map out their personal musical soundtracks
Subliminal Speech
Faigy Peritzman The deeper the recognition, the deeper the effect
The Big Change
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Spelling things out clears clouds of resentment
The Count-Up
Mrs. Shani Mendlowitz Tap the middos of Sefirah to recreate yourself
The Baker: Part 1
D. Himy, M.S. CCC-SLP with Zivia Reischer "She can't get married if she can't build a relationship...
Know This: Infertility
As Told to Bracha Stein There was no place for me. I didn’t belong
Dear Shadchan
The Girl Here's the thing: I need time