What advice do you wish you had taken from your parents?
I don’t really think that I ignored any advice that my parents gave me. Mostly it was things like be a good person. Pay your bills first. Don’t waste your money. Don’t go into debt. I have taken loans for getting a car and my house. But I paid them off promptly and I’m free of any payments at the moment. With some luck we were able to pay off all our credit card debt once. Since then we pay off all our cards every month and avoid the interest that so quickly accumulates.
My parents were really not big into advice. They did pass on some rules to live by that I have actually taken to heart and have applied. These nuggets were passed along through their model of how they lived their lives and reinforced through general comments and observations in daily life. I can’t think of anything they advised that I ignored.
My dad always emphasized education. He was a very intelligent man who did not have many opportunities for formal education. His family was poor and his father died when he was pretty young. He and other members of the family went to work as soon as they were able. He did not finish high school as a boy but certainly earned an equivalency through his own efforts as a grown man. He always encouraged us to do well in school and all of us went on to some kind of college or training after high school. Three of us earned our degrees and two of us eventually got a Master’s degree.
The other thing my dad impressed upon us was care with money. A person who went through very hard times in his youth and through the Great Depression as an adult is frugal with money. He and mom both encouraged us to save the money earned from teenage jobs and all of us paid for our educations mostly from those savings. Along with that was an ethic to take care with spending, pay bills as soon as possible, and do without things you can’t afford. Overall, Butch and I have both adopted that approach.
My mom listened to all my trials and tribulations with playmates, teenage friendships, and boyfriend angst through my growing up years. She gave me the most direct piece of advice just before I got married. She sat me down to tell me that she and dad would stand behind me if I ever had serious trouble in my marriage. But she also said that Butch and I were undoubtedly going to have disagreements, irritations, and some big arguments over the years. She told me that I should NOT tell her about those but deal with them myself. She said that I would likely forgive and forget any disagreement in a day or two but she would remember for a lot longer and have a harder time forgiving. I took that advice to heart!
This post is part of the StoryWorth project that I am participating in.
At the ButchieBoy main page click the “StoryWorth” category to see the rest of the entries.