From The Storyteller
September 11, 2017, Tool Kit
Our teenagers had a reoccurring urgent request. “Everybody is getting together at (somewhere)”. It was presented as the single most important event in their life. And, if somehow we failed to go along, we would be reminded that their social ruin would be on our heads.
To reduce the drama, Elaine and I instituted the “Necessary No” rule. Basically, the answer to all requests was - “No” – until they could answer six questions. 1) When was it? 2) Where was it? 3) Who was going to be there (everybody didn’t work?) 4) How will you get there? 5) When was it to be over? 6) How will you get home?
At first the rule caused great drama, tears, and that dreaded teen look coupled with the traditional “I hate you.” Soon however the crew caught on. The six questions are the same questions every cautious adult should answer when they’re make plans. The “Necessary No” rule was one for their “Adult Survival Tool Kit”.
This “Tool Kit” included things like alarm clocks. In high school they got to choose when they wanted to get up. Our rule – At 7:45 they would walk out the door for school in whatever condition they were in. Each soon discovered getting up at 7:40 was not a workable plan.
Other tools included laundry. They got to decide what and when they did their laundry. There was adult supervision at first with the washing machine, and without the laundry fairy, the pile of dirty closes in the corner of their rooms became manageable. Other tools included things like cooking, and grocery shopping on a limited budget.
We have been thanked repeated for giving them their own personal “Adult Survival Tool Kit.”
Moral - Plant with the idea that others may harvest