Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Thinking On This

I'll tell you, I'm loving this new site Raising Homemakers. I was excited when I first heard about it. I was glad when it launched. And I have been enjoying the articles so far.

Today's article had this statement in it:

Responsibility = Maturity. Early responsibility = increased maturity.
Minimizing responsibility = irresponsibility.

I must say, I agree. But it's made me think harder about how much responsibility I've given my girls so far. Sweetheart could absolutely do more, but she has a get out of jail free card in the form of a little sister. When they are playing together...I hate to interrupt. That leaves Little Bit without a playmate and I know the day will come when Sweetheart won't want to play.

And you just can't leave a Sheriff without a horse!

Little Bit gets a bit of a raw deal in the form of a big sister. Because Sweetheart is helping with something, Little Bit gets roped into it as well. I'll tell you, there is NO WAY Sweetheart was doing her own laundry at the age of 6. They are just growing up differently because of birth order.

It's just that I really, really agree with that quote from the article. I've seen the end result of kids without responsibility and it is not pretty. I've also seen (much less often), the result of kids with too much responsibility and it's not so good either. (I'm not talking about chores in this instance, but parental neglect where young children are left caring for even younger children because Mom and Dad are doing their own thing. It happened a lot where I taught.)

There must be a balance and parents must come to those decisions carefully, with prayer, and much consideration. I'd rather err on the side of a bit too much responsibility than not enough. In a home where there is joy and love....a lot of work is not such a burden. Too little responsibility really is never a positive thing.

So I'm re-thinking our girls' jobs. I'm re-thinking how much training I've given them and how much we work together. I'm re-thinking a lot of things. You know, I think if my family went back in time and met our ancestors......they would pretty much think my kids were ninnies. Surely children long ago had more responsibility and far less time to play.

Hmm. Any thoughts?


  1. I have been a lurker here for a looooong time, but I had to respond to this post. I completely agree. As a high schoolteacher, I have seen this many times--too many to count. I, too, am working to change my life and how I raise my 11 yo dd. When she whines or complains about chores (which really isn't that often), my dh often tells her that if she lived on a farm she would have her own goat to care for everyday and many other responsibilities. :)
    Dawn T

  2. You're absolutely right. One of my favorite teaching is "What Your 12 Year Old Ought to Know" by S.M. Davis. If, biblically speaking, our children are adults by 12, many of us are falling short and shooting ourselves in the foot too. How often do I hear moms complain of their house work load? All the time - and it's their own fault if they have able-bodied children that they've just not bothered to train.

    Another thing I learned from Marcia Somerville is if something needs to be done, have the youngest person that is able do it. This keeps us from laying too much on the older ones, and helps us train up the younger ones.

    Prayer, balance, grace, new mercies helps me through this!

  3. Well hello Dawn T! Any relation to LucyT? :)
    Is there some reality show where we can send our kids to live on a farm for a week? Ha!

    Q--I like that about the youngest capable person doing the job. That makes sense. Wish I had a few more kiddos to pick from sometimes.

  4. I like have the youngest person do that... looking at our chores I think I do already do that a lot but not enough. It makes me want to re think things...

    trouble is I am already re thinking to many things. Can you go into a re thinking catatonic state???

    I guess if you do go into a re thinking catatonic state your house would still be kept up if you had trained your kids!

  5. Carrie, if anyone could go into a re thinking catatonic state, it would be you! :)

  6. I had never thought about having the youngest do the chore.I do know my 2nd to the youngest child is about to turn seven and is a little spoiled.She was our first and only girl for 6 years after 3 sons and 2 miscarrages.(excuse)She told me today that she is a princess not a mommy.We will be working on this attitude.

    Sorry Brenda not related as far as I know but we do have GREAT taste in blogs.


  7. Ah, one of my best friends has a daughter with this princess complex. :) She's only just turned 5 and she's the youngest and NOT the only daughter. Well, princess is fine if she grows up to be Queen of her own home, right?

  8. I agree with this, but had never really thought about it before. Maybe subconsciously, but not in that nice a way. My oldest is WAY too responsible and gets dumped on for work a lot, but I've been trying to balance it out more. The other two are more than capable as well. Just gotta tap into the hard-working skills I know are in there somewhere. Thanks for posting this!


I don't get to talk to a lot of actual grown-ups during the day, so your comments make me really happy! :)