Bad Parenting Produces Poverty


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One of the most controversial aspects of my Rich Habits Study was the direct correlation between bad parenting and poverty.

What I discovered in researching the habits of poor people was that bad parenting, irrespective of childhood socioeconomic status, resulted in poverty. In simple English, I found bad parents were far more to blame for poverty as they passed along Poor Habits to their children.

Bad parents come in many varieties:

  • Alcoholic parents
  • Drug addicted parents
  • Incarcerated parents
  • Gambling addicted parents
  • Abusive parents (physical or mental or both)
  • Toxic parents (negative, angry or emotionally out of control parents)
  • Combative parents (parents who fight with one another)
  • Invisible parents (parents who ignore their children)
  • Untrustworthy parents (infidelity)
  • Parents with bad habits

Conversely, I learned from my research that good parenting, irrespective of childhood socioeconomic status, had far more to do with creating wealth than anything else in society.

Good parents also come in many varieties:

  • Compassionate parents
  • Mentoring parents (parents who mentor their children to succeed)
  • Positive parents (upbeat, enthusiastic, optimistic parents)
  • Trustworthy parents (parents devoted to one another)
  • Harmonious parents (parents who greatly care for one another)
  • Parents with good habits

Many who become poor adults continue to blame their parents throughout their lives for their poverty. While this might help rationalize poverty in the minds of the poor, it does nothing to fix it.

For those born into households with bad parents, the great elixir or remedy for this, is mentorship. Finding a success mentor in life, I learned from my research, mitigated the impact of growing up in a bad parent household.

This is why it is so important to find a success mentor in life. Success mentors erase much of the damage caused by bad parenting. They provide the template for a successful, wealthy life.

In my book Rich Kids, I share the success mentoring strategies and Rich Habits 177 self-made millionaires learned from their parents. Most of the parents of those self-made millionaires (76%) were poor or middle-class, highlighting the fact being raised poor or middle-class is unimportant. What is important, however, is being raised by good parents – parents who are success mentors to their children.

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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley understands the difference between being rich and poor: at age nine, his family went from being multi-millionaires to broke in just one night, due to a catastrophic fire that destroyed his Dad's thriving business. For fourteen years they struggled with poverty. There were eleven in Tom's family, and they lived in constant fear of losing their home.

Driven by the desire to unlock the secrets to success and failure, Tom spent five years studying the daily activities of 233 rich people and 128 poor people. He discovered there was an immense difference between the habits of the rich and the poor. During his research he identified over 300 daily activities that separated the “haves” from the “have nots.” Tom decided to write a book to share what he learned. That book, Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals (1st Edition), went on to become an Amazon Bestseller in the United States forty times over a three year period. To give you some perspective, in order to be a true Amazon Bestseller in the United States, where you actually receive a specific Bestseller designation from Amazon, you need to be in the top 100 of all books sold by Amazon in the United States in a given day. Rich Habits did that for nearly thirty straight days, rising as high as #7, eclipsing such Bestselling authors such as Stephen Covey, Robert Kiyosaki and J.K. Rowlings. Imagine that - an unknown, first-time, self-published author selling more books than J.K. Rowlings!

Tom now travels the world, sharing his Rich Habits and motivating audiences at industry conferences, corporate events, universities, multi-level marketing group events, and global sales organizations’ presentations and finance conferences. He has even spoken on the same stage with famous entrepreneurs and personal development experts, such as Sir Richard Branson, Robin Sharma, Dr. Daniel Amen, and many others.

Tom has shared his insights on various national and international network, cable, and Internet television programs such as CBS Evening News, NBC News, Yahoo Financially Fit,, India TV, Australia, and a host of others. He has been interviewed on many prestigious nationally syndicated radio shows, including the Dave Ramsey Show, Marketplace Money, and WABC.

Tom has been featured in numerous print magazines—such as Money magazine, Inc. Magazine, SUCCESS Magazine, Entrepreneur magazine, Fast Company magazine, More magazine, Epoca Magazine (Brazil’s largest weekly) and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine—and various online publications, including USA Today, CNN, MSN Money,,, and the Huffington Post. Tom is a frequent contributor to Business Insider,, and a few other media outlets.

National publicity has garnered international media attention for Tom and his Rich Habits research spanning 23 countries. Broadcast media, online publications, and television throughout Asia, the South Pacific, Europe, the United Kingdom, and Central and South America have shared his powerful message.

In an effort to help parents, grandparents, teachers and adults become success mentors to the younger generation, Tom released his second book, Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to be Happy and Successful in Life in 2014. This book was the self-help category winner of the 2015 New York Book Festival and Runner-up in the prestigious 2015 Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards Contest. In 2016 Tom released his third book, Change Your Habits, Change Your Life. This book provides the latest science on habit change as well as more of Tom's unique research on the specific habits that helped transform 177 ordinary individuals into self-made millionaires.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, and hold a master’s degree in taxation. As president of Cerefice and Company, CPAs, Tom heads one of the premier financial firms in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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