Friends Don't Let Friends...

by Xin Lu on 28 May 2008 4 comments

In the past few decades the Ad Council has been running an ad with the tag line "Friends Don't Let Friends Drive Drunk". This ad campaign has been instrumental in decreasing drunk driving fatalities and almost every American has heard it at one time or another. What if this ad were applied to mistakes people make in personal finance?

These are some of the alternative "friends don't let friends" ads I would make:

Ironically, I find that it is easier to give strangers advice rather than advising my own friends because as a society we are taught that our money is our own business. It is weird to butt into the financial decisions of a friend, but sometimes I feel that it is necessary to speak up because a really bad financial decision could be as devastating as being disabled in a drunk driving car accident.

What financial mistake do you think belongs in a "friends don't let friends" ad? Feel free to be creative!

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Guest's picture
Guest

Friends will hate you more if you try to dabble in their affairs without being invited. And, usually, they want you to agree with their decisions, not try to talk them out of it. Our consumer society is about wants, not needs, and choices made this way are usually irrational. How many times have you heard "Yeah, I agree with you, BUT..." followed by some excuse or statement indicating this is what is wanted.

Linsey Knerl's picture

most of my "real" friends, that respect my opinion, have been open to financial advice.  When people get into situations where they don't know what to do, personal advice from someone you know can go a long ways.

Good article. 

Guest's picture
Barbara

with Linsey. The people I choose to be friends with respect my opinion and insights into things, so even if they don't ultimately agree with what I am thinking, they're always willing to listen.

And I've referred more than one friend to this blog site after telling them how the various articles are helping me get out of debt!

Guest's picture
Andrew

I would have to agree. It is a true friend who sees us making a mistake and warns us. It's hard to take sometimes, but it can save us a whole lot of pain and gain us a closer friend.