The Gift of Responsibility

Children must learn to be responsible for the small things before they will be responsible for the larger things. They must learn to turn something in on time for school before they show up on time for work.

If they don’t learn in the small things, the real world will teach them about the larger things. And it will teach them good and hard. One way or another, they will learn the lesson.

The later in life they learn the lesson, the more harsh that lesson will be. What would be a quick spanking when they are 5 years old can turn into being fired from their job when they are 25. Or worse.

It’s your job to ease them into it and to help them take it seriously.

It they are responsible for cleaning their own room, do not treat a messy room as a light thing. They have abdicated their responsibility.

If they are responsible for putting their shoes in the right place when they get home, do not let them get away with forgetting to do it.

This doesn’t mean be a tyrant. You start small. You start with just a couple of responsibilities. It might be as small as flushing the toilet after they go to the bathroom. Or washing their hands. Or brushing their teeth at night. Or putting their dishes into the dishwasher.

But once you give them a responsibility, do not let them get away with abdication and laziness. You are only harming them in the long run.

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