Wednesday, 22 June 2011

The Debate: Kids and Chores–Part 3

A whole family

Be it resolved that the truth of kids doing chores is: ‘we all need to work as a family.’

How do you know that’s true?
--it’s self-evident: it’s our home and we need to work together for it to be peaceful and healthy

A bit of a circle of logic, there, but how ‘healthy’ is it to put kids in a position of opposition to the people they need to live? How peaceful is it to order people around? How peaceful do you find resistance and rebellion?
--we’re all equal in our home

Y’are not. Who selects which chores are really on the list? Who has veto?
--well, someone has to lead!

Doubtless. Does it always get to be the same person?

‘Leadership’ engages voluntary cooperation. Dictatorship engages ‘doesn’t matter how you feel about it’ obedience (and resistance and rebellion.) What do you do when they choose not to participate?

Perhaps more importantly, what are they allowed to do when you choose not to participate?


  1. When they choose not to participate I do it myself because I'm the one who wants it done.

    I don't understand the last sentence. Could you expand on that for me?

  2. Sorry, probably a punctuation error...

    When the kids choose not to participate, since I'm the one who wants it done, I do it myself.


  3. Hahahaha, Linda, I'm laughing because the first sentence in my comment was a statement from me about what I actually do. I'm agreeing with you.

    The sentence that I didn't get was the last line in your post which says, "Perhaps more importantly, what are they allowed to do when you choose not to participate?"

    What does that mean? I don't see the connection between my non-participation and what the are "allowed" to do. I feel really dense here.

  4. Sorry, apparently I not only can't use punctuation, but I can't read, either! LOL

    I mean, if you choose not to participate (help, do, do it in their time, when they ask you, or on the 'regular' schedule) what kind of punishment do they get to mete out to you?

    Parents often say things about it being 'fair' that kids be expected to comply... and then have no equal 'fairness' in what is allowed to be done about someone who doesn't.

    As Alfie Kohn often points out: very little of what a parent asks of a child is anything more important than a parent's whims.

    If parents get to have a spaz because the kids' not complying, what do the kids get to do when the parents don't?

  5. Aha! Okay, now I get it. Yes, that's a very good point. I think my daughter definitely has one up on me in the spaz department when she doesn't get her way but I could be wrong about that. :-)
    I'm not a believer in punishment so we basically just express our displeasure and frustration openly and then go on our merry way. And that goes both ways - parent and child.

  6. Yeah... she'd probably say the same thing. People are awfully good at seeing other people's behaviour as much worse than their own, which is sensible and justified...