By Wanda Carter
Should families help family members, I think so because family members should be committed to one an others success and progress in life. Life is what we make it and as we live and experience life, I think it’s important to create the kind of legacy we want to display during our life and to be remembered by after we made our transition.
I remember when my children were young and my grandmother made sure that my children had coats, hats, scarfs and gloves each winter because she wanted to help me sustain my family. She didn’t have to do that but she did because she was my grandma.
I remember how my mom and step dad would come by periodically just to make sure that I had enough food and pocket money to take care of their grandchildren. When I was a young adult, it was the protocol for the seniors in the family to counsel, advise, require and even insist that the adult children like myself, adhere to family traditions (eating holiday meals together, participating in family celebrations, and contributing to family projects). If someone fail short on their rent, everyone in the family donated to ensure that family members rent was paid. The practice was assumed, no one thought twice about contributing because we were taught to help each other. If a family member got in trouble and needed money for an attorney or to bond themselves out of jail, everyone in the family donated money to the pot. We helped each other, what happened to that philosophy? Why did we lose our commitment to one another?
The seniors sustained the process of helping one another to survive. Back then – everyone shared and supported each other to ensure the families existence. Perhaps today’s generation needs to remember and re-establish some old family traditions. Raise your children to be who you want them to be. Demonstrate the behaviors you want to see. Teach them the importance of helping one another, then help them to be the best they can be. Allow them to make mistakes, you did, it’s okay, you turned out okay didn’t you. Your job as a parent is to counsel them, advise them and support them, so they can mature and become independent self-directed adults. Don’t abandon them, lend a hand to help them stabilize themselves but do not become an enabler (someone who cripples them and hinders their ability to mature), because you want them to be able take care of themselves when you are no longer here in this existence to help them.