Actions Have Consequences

You Broke It, You Bought It
Image by reidmix via Flickr

Six months ago, my laptop quit charging.  This particular model has a history of having the power jack come loose inside the laptop, so I ordered the part and waited.  When it came, I disassembled the computer, carefully tracking where each screw went.   I installed the part, the put it back together, with only a few extra pieces.

It didn’t work.

After spending the money and doing the work, I tested the external power cord.   I could have saved myself a few hours of work if I would have done that first.  It was trash, so I ordered a new one.   That’s time and money down the drain due to my poor research.

As an adult, I know that I am responsible for my actions, even if the consequences aren’t readily apparent.   If I tap another car in a parking lot, I am going to have to pay for the damages, even if I didn’t see the car.   This has manifested itself in credit card statements I didn’t read, speed limits signs I didn’t notice(or ignored!), and–on occasion–my wife and I not communicating about how much money we’ve spent.

Kids have a much harder time grasping that concept.

My son enjoys playing games online.  Some of the games are multiplayer games  he plays online with his friends, others are flash games he plays at home while his friends watch.   They like to take the laptop into the dining room where they can play without being in the way.   A small herd of 10 and 11 year old kids hopping around expensive electronics can’t be a good idea.

Yesterday, we saw that the power cord was fraying at the computer end from being dragged all over the house and jerked by kids tripping on the cord.   We got six months of life out of the cord because of kids who should have known better not acting appropriately around the cord and the computer.    Not happy.

My son got grounded for a week and honored with the privilege of replacing the cord.   Now he isn’t happy, but he understands that he needs to pay for the damage he causes, even if he didn’t know that what he was doing could cause the damage.    If it was something he would have had no way of knowing, there would have been no punishment, but he should have known not to jerk on the cord of leave it where it can be tripped over.

What do you think?

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    1. Have to agree with you. Out of the piggy bank it comes. Kids definitely need to learn that things don’t just “magically” get replaced by some fairy. “Things” cost money.

    2. Though it sounds tough but you need to take such stands to teach the value of money to kids.


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