It Takes a Village …
… not advantage.
Let me start off by saying that I am all for helping people out. I really do think that the phrase, “it takes a village” is correct. It does take a village to raise kids. There will always come a time where you are in need of help from another person where your kids are involved just as there will always come a time where another person requires your help. That is what it is truly all about. Helping and supporting each other as we move through this crazy thing called parenting.
I moved into a neighborhood where the homes are very close to each other. Each home shares a driveway with their neighbor. This being said, it makes us a very close knit community. Lucky for me and my three girls, we all get along, and there are lots of kids to play with. It is safe, so they are able to run the street as they choose. Our house is some what of a hub. Our driveway is always full of bikes and scooters and the house is always full of neighborhood kids. I have no problem with that at all. I can send their little butts home to their families whenever I chose. Or can I?
I stay at home. I am the only stay at home mom on the street. This means people tend to ask me to help them out with childcare quite a bit. Over the summer, I was even paid to watch one of the kids, which I was all for doing. Thing is, there seems to be a state of mind that since I am already home, and have three kids of my own, which is more than anyone else on the street, I have no problem being responsible for other people’s children. All of the time. There is not a week that goes by where I am not getting other kids off of the bus, feeding them dinner, or watching them while their parents are at work. All for free, because, hey, I am home anyway, right?
Like I stated, I have no issue with helping people out. Running late from work? Hit me up, I will be happy to grab your kid from the bus stop and keep them for you. Where it becomes an issue is when others feel you will never say no. It is to the point of me feeling like the neighborhood babysitter, and I have only myself to blame, because I don’t ever say no. It seems as though I have become a village of one and this village is getting tired! However, these people are my neighbors and friends and their kids are my kids’ friends, so I am in a bit of a tricky spot.
Other than getting this off of my chest, my main reason for writing this blog is to say, don’t take advantage of your village. We all need help from time to time and should be there for each other, no doubt. Just make sure to keep it fair. It should be an “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine” type of situation. Let’s not overstep boundaries when asking for the help of others, otherwise it begins to cause riffs in relationships and let’s all be honest, we could use all of the healthy relationships we can get.
So, thank you for reading my mini rant and if you are like me and feel as though you may be pulling a little too much weight in your village I hope you are able to stand up and let it be known! Maybe one day I will be able to do that same.
Good luck, Villagers!