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Helping Others

Helping Others

When did we stop teaching our kids to get up and help out?

The other day, while at Dunkin Donuts, I witnessed something that shocked me to the point that I’ve been thinking about it since, and finally decided to blog about it, all the while wondering if I’m alone on this one…

It was this past Wednesday, the day of the heavy wet snow/rain storm. I was at Dunkin Donuts taking a break from my snowplowing route and I ended up sitting next to eight high school kids. Four boys and four girls. One of the girls was using crutches and was at the end of the kids table leaning on her crutches.

I was busy reading the paper when the girl on the crutches made her way past me to the bathroom. The floor was soaked from all the foot traffic and as she passed the table of her friends I saw her crutches slide out, sideways, from under her causing her to drop to the floor, yelling, “Ooouuwww!”

Without a thought I jumped up, asked her if she were alright and if she was able to get up without further injury. She was embarrassed but uninjured and accepted my assistance to get her to her feet and get her crutches straightened out.

What angered me was that from the time I saw her fall in my peripheral vision to the time I got up to help her I could hear her friends joking and laughing.
This is what I remember:

Boy 1: “Ohhhh dude that must have hurt!”
Boy 2: “whoa did you see that!”
Boy 3: “Yea, that must’ve hurt”
Girl 1: “Oh my God are you ok?”
Girl 2: “ha-ha-ha now you’re all wet!”

All of the kids sitting down were joking and laughing while this girl was crumpled on the floor.
Not one of them moved to assist their friend.

My point is this.

Why didn’t any of her friends jump up to help her?

What were they waiting for?

Did their parents instill in them the values of helping others, Helping friends?

I often think about how different my childhood was compared to these Generation Y kids. I grew up blue collar, was taught to be polite, taught a work ethic, and to respect my elders. My parents instilled in me the values of taking care of each other’s and to help our neighbors. Every snow storm for years I would often shovel the elderly lady’s driveway next door ~ for free!

Generation Y kids have been pampered, nurtured and programmed with a slew of activities since they were toddlers, meaning they are both high-performance and high-maintenance. They’ve grown up questioning their parents, authority and even employers.

When did we stop teaching our kids to get up and help out?

Why are there so many problems in our culture with entitlement, expectations and lack of work ethic?

Do we need to create a video game to teach our kids to help others?

~ concord carpenter

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