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Of Course I Love You. . .Now Get To Work

September 25, 2019

The world don’t give a damn about how sensitive these kids are, especially the young black kids. You ain’t doin’ these kids a favor by patronizing them. You’re crippling them; you’re crippling them for life.
– Remember The Titans

My daughter recently went to college. She’s not my oldest daughter and she’s not my youngest daughter. In a family of 13 kids, eight of them girls, most stories are just about a daughter. She started at BYU in the Fall. Sadly for me, she adjusted easily to living in a college dorm. Happily for me BYU is only about 20 miles away and she comes home to visit often.

Unlike some college kids, she doesn’t bring her dirty laundry home. She’s been doing her own laundry for years. All our kids have. They also clean bathrooms, wash dishes, vacuum. They mow the lawn. They weed the garden. In fact, they do most of the chores around our house.

We used to live in neighborhood about five miles from our current house. The house we were in was nice enough. But, the problem was the yard. The house was in a “planned” neighborhood. The houses were actually packed two to a lot. The open spaces were all shared. The HOA took care of mowing the grass, and maintaining the landscaping.

Part of the reason we moved was the yard upkeep. I wanted a place where I could make sure my kids had to work. Our current place is perfect. It’s really important that my kids had a chance to work while growing up.

One of the online groups I’m a member is a loose collection of aquanitances. Wednesday’s we get a chance to air “Pet Peeves.” It doesn’t matter how petty or how trivial. One friend posted this week that she’s having to evict a college student that she’s been allowing to stay with her. The college student, while nice enough, is a slob. My friend has to fumigate and replace carpets. It will cost more than the sloppy student paid in rent.

My friend knows a little about the student’s upbringing. She never learned to cook or clean or do chores. My friend feels bad about having to evict her, but feels worse about the damage to her house.

My daughter at BYU has a roommate from our hometown. They both applied to the “Y” with the idea of being roommates. Her roommate took her clothes home to her parents the first few weeks. See, her friend grew up in a home where she didn’t have chores. At least not the same amount as my daughter had.

My daughter is starting to realize that rather than a punishment, the chores she had growing up were actually giving her skills that she would need in life. Skills that her roommate missed out on.

My daughter’s friend is now doing her laundry in the washers and dryers provided in the dorms. Her roommate taught her.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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(c) 2019 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved

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