photo credit: Viqi French via photopin cc
photo credit: Viqi French via photopin cc

You can find serenity in teaching your children to fend for themselves.

It is important to give our children the skills they need to take care of themselves when they are adults. I was speaking with some women recently about men and things the men didn’t know even as adults. The list ranged from how to pick up clothes off the floor to how to sew a button on a shirt. It was an interesting conversation because the blame was placed all kinds of places, except for where it belongs – with the parents of the people involved. When we send our children out into the world of adulthood we should have given them all the tools they need to make it on their own. It is not sufficient to teach them only the skills stereotypically handled by a person of their gender because we think they will marry. After all, spouses get sick, tired, need help, or in bad situations, leave. You must equip your children to make it on their own in the world.

It is not as hard as it may seem to teach your children to fend for themselves. Start when your children are small.

You do not feed your children when they are adults. When they are small you start teaching them to hold a bottle on their own and to eat with their hands. Later you teach them about eating with utensils. Later still, you add a variety of foods and flavors. In this same way, you can teach your children all the skills they need to be self-sufficient adults. Think about all the things you typically do over the course of the week, your children will need to learn how to do most of those things.

There are a few things you should teach your children so they are prepared to take care of themselves as adults. The following is a good place to start:

  • basic sewing, how to hem, how to fix a button
  • how to balance a checkbook
  • how to make a budget
  • how to cook at least three different meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • how to clean every room in the house
  • how to do the grocery shopping
  • how to do minor household repairs
  • how to hire household help
  • the proper way to tip when eating out or going to a hair salon
  • the proper way to set a dinner table
  • the proper way to change a baby’s diaper
This list is not all-inclusive, but it is a good starting place. A person who possesses these skills will be able to handle most life situations faced by the average adult.

As parents, it is our job to prepare our children for adulthood. You do not want to be the parent who has her son sent back home because his wife cannot put up with him not knowing how to do anything one moment longer.  A husband or wife wants an adult as a mate, not another child to raise. By teaching your children to fend for themselves you prepare them for happiness and success in life. An adult who can fend for herself is not at the mercy of another person. Additionally, a person who can fend for herself is a prized helper and partner, not a leech.

In conclusion, you can find serenity in teaching your children to fend for themselves. So, the question for you this serene day is, what was the first adult thing you taught your children?