Friday, July 31, 2009

It's not what you can do for your family...

Have times changed that much? I remember being a child and having chores. Although I do believe, for a brief time, we were paid an allowance, for the most part it was just understood that these things were a required part of being a family. Not so say we ever enjoyed chores...but we also knew better than to dispute them with our parents.

My children do not seem to belong to a central unit...a working family all contributing to the good of the whole. They have somehow along the way formed their own little unions, and as time goes by, we see them collectively bargaining over wages, benefits, and working conditions. If one has already fullfilled his or her primary chores, anything else asked of them is up for negotiations. A simple task such as getting the milk out at dinnertime turns into an all-out debate over who should have to do it based on who has already surpassed their daily obligations, or who got the milk out last time. It results in one of us choosing a child, who will then sulk as he or she reminds us that we are asking for something outside the stipulated terms of labor.

Our two preteens have different approaches. Our daughter, always the activist, will strike if she feels she has been treated unfairly. She is quite vocal, and will stand firm in her beliefs. Our son, however, is the negotiator. He will agree to extra tasks, if he can get something in return. A bonus, an advance in his paycheck, or other privileges as defined by him.

I am thinking about joining a union myself. The working conditions here have become atrocious. I don't really feel that I get paid what I'm worth...and there is no health insurance, despite all the work hazards. I'm thinking I might go on the very least demand more coffee and beer.

1 comment:

  1. AHHH. Life never changes! Kids are always going to be kids. Your's just took after their father. Sorry! Went on strike once. The work was still there when it was over!