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Jude's avatar

What are one or two things that your parents and/or grandparents had talked to you about early on in life that has stuck with you?

Asked by Jude (32185points) June 2nd, 2009
24 responses
“Great Question” (3points)

My Dad; good credit so important. When your bills come in, pay ‘em!

Mama: you have just as much right to be happy as the next person.

My Grandma: “you’re made of good stuff” (when I was going through a difficult time, she knew that I was capable of handling it because I came from a good foundation).

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Likeradar's avatar

If 13 counts as “early life,” then one thing that really sticks out is my dad talking to me about death. My beloved paternal Grandpa died, and I was 100% devastated. I was laying in bed sobbing after hearing the news, and my dad came in and hand a long talk with me.

I don’t remember much of what he said, but I do remember him telling me Grandpa must be so happy to see Grandma (who died 4ish years earlier) again. I had this vision of him seeing her for the first time in so long, and felt totally comforted. I haven’t been afraid or weird about death since. I don’t think I actually believe what he said literally anymore, it was just a very, very comforting thing that has stuck with me.

Also, my mom has always told me how important it is to enjoy your own company. Being able to entertain myself has gotten me through some rough patches. I’m my own favorite friend.

marinelife's avatar

For me, it was not so much what was said as what they did.

My Mom sang around the house while cleaning. It nurtured my love of music at an early age.

My dad tended to treat people based on how they acted and not what they did in life or how much money they had. I have internalized those same standards.

Bluefreedom's avatar

- Always open the door for ladies and treat them respectfully
– Do an honest days work for an honest days pay
– Be financially prudent
– Always look out for #1
– Make the most of every day because you never know how many of them you might have left
– Treat others as you would like to be treated
– Learn humility
– Whatever you decide to do, do it to the best of your ability all the time
– Don’t hold grudges and learn (and respect) the power of forgiveness
– It’s okay for men to cry, no matter what anyone thinks or says about this

cak's avatar

My dad taught me to never ever expect someone to do it for you…know how to do it yourself! Offer to help others. It’s a bad thing to watch someone and not offer. It shows what little character you have.

My Aunt taught me that no matter what, you better live your life. Don’t ever stop living, either. She lived every single day of her life, even after being diagnosed with ALS. She was just amazing.

My Mom – laugh. Laugh often and don’t leave the house without sunscreen. :)

cak (15863points)“Great Answer” (3points)
SuperMouse's avatar

My dad taught me “you can’t worry until you know.”

My grandmother used to say “sh!t in one hand wish in the other – see which gets filled first.”

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

My grandmother cautioned me to never fall in love with a Latin or Middle Eastern man since they are supposedly selfish, lacking lovers and beat their women. Of course she also cautioned me not to adopt Vietnamese children because they would grow up to kill me in my sleep one day.

Jack79's avatar

My grandfather also taught me about money. Everyone did, but my grandfather told me to keep a diary with exactly how much I spend, and make a proper budget. For some weird reason, I followed his advice. I started with my pocket money when I was 14 and have kept one to this very day. I am probably the only artist in the world who can tell you how much money he has in his pocket at any given time.

But the most characteristic thing of all was what my grandma said the first time I saw the moon. I must have been around 3 or so, which means it was in 1975, a few years after the first landing of 1969. And obviously at the peak of the Cold War. So I ask my grandmother:
“what’s that, granny?”
“The moon, my boy.”
“And what are those dark spots there?”
“Those are American austronauts”
“Do they live there?”
“No, they just went there to explore”.

It was the first time I’d heard the word “American”, let alone “astronaut”. And as I grew I realised the significance of what my granmother told me. For my generation, the Moon was a rocky planetoid conquered by Mankind. Or rather, by Americans in their struggle for ideological dominance in a complicated geopolitical situation. It was not a Godess, or a smily face, nor was it made of cheese. And no cat could fly over it anymore.

loser's avatar

Mom: “What is wrong with you?!!”
Dad: “Don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.”
Grandma: “Be careful, you know they never caught the Zodiac killer!”
I can still hear her saying that, too.

RedPowerLady's avatar

@jmah Mama: you have just as much right to be happy as the next person.

I am loving this

cak's avatar

@loser…..Wow! You know, she’s right…your Grandma is right!

makes me look closer at my ex!

cak (15863points)“Great Answer” (1points)
SeventhSense's avatar

Keep regular and always carry mints.

skfinkel's avatar

Mom: Don’t expect anyone to be perfect except yourself.
Dad: Always keep a sense of fun and laughter around you.
Grandfather: Brought from Europe at least a hundred relatives. Extremely generous and giving. A powerful message.

Facade's avatar

I used to always share everything with my little playmates, especially my favorite things. I think some little girl broke something of mine that I loved. Afterwards my mom told me that I shouldn’t give my favorite things to people (or something like that). Now, I hate to share lol.
ok so maybe it wasn’t the best lesson, but it’s working for me

knitfroggy's avatar

My grandma always told me when I was dating that money and looks aren’t everything, it’s all in how they treat you. I always thought that was very good advice.

Aethelwine's avatar

My parents always showed affection. I felt loved. My husband and I do the same with our children.

cak's avatar

@jonsblond good parents!

cak (15863points)“Great Answer” (0points)
tiffyandthewall's avatar

i used to talk to my grandma on the phone a lot, and not a call went by without her telling me about how she used to have 7 dresses – one for every day of the week – and when she’d get a new one, she would give the other one away, because who in the world needs more than 7 dresses, yadda yadda yadda.
this lost its effect when i found pictures of my grandma from when she was younger, and she definitely had quite the closet…

Aethelwine's avatar

@cak We (and they) try at least. There was always a hug at the end of the day. :)

ckinyc's avatar

my mom used to say, “Every grain of rice you left in your bowl. It will show up as a mole on your future wife’s face.” thank the Lord I am gay!

Aethelwine's avatar

@ckinyc Beautiful! I really needed the laugh. :)

ru2bz46's avatar

My Grandpa once told me a story about a former friend of his who was always so paranoid about locking up his stuff so nobody’d steal it. Even walking a few feet away from his car, he would lock the doors. It turned out later, the guy was a thief. Grandpa said that’s how you can tell when somebody has a bad trait – when they think everybody else has that trait.

I’ve learned that it’s the same with jealous lovers; they tend to be the cheaters.

Judi's avatar

My Dad knew he was dieing before I was born. He made an extra effort to pass on as much wisdom as he could muster before he died.
He taught me about work ethics, “When you work for someone you sell your time. Make the best use of their time so no one can ever accuse you of stealing.”
He taught me about compassion. Although he was a complicated bigot, (I think he must have subscribed to separate but equal) He made me read The Peanut Man (story of George Washington Carver) and The Underground Railroad (Story of Harriet Tubman.) We discussed it often. He instilled in me a since of justice, and equality that he probably would have thought I took to far… but maybe he would have evolved too had he lived.
My daddy taught me to “take a half step slower,” and enjoy the moment. he had emphysema and would get winded when he walked more than a few feet. We enjoyed the little things as we slowly walked hand in hand
My daddy taught me that although we were often broke, we were never poor. (I was actually an adult before I realized that we had been poor by the worlds standards.)
My Daddy taught me about death and not giving up without a fight. He was supposed to die before I was born. Instead, he fought to see me get into school so my mom would not have to pay a babysitter once he was gone. Lo and behold, just before I started kindergarten my mom got pregnant again. He had to live another 5 years.
My dad died in 1971 when I was 10.
I still miss him.

SeventhSense's avatar

Your Dad sounds like he offered you much. As per this:
“When you work for someone you sell your time. Make the best use of their time so no one can ever accuse you of stealing.”
I would only add:
“and when you prove your value get the most you can for your time because you’re worth it”.

Judi's avatar

@SeventhSense ; yes, I had a hard time with my first salary position. I gave away to many hours because I didn’t want to get accused of stealing. It was ingrained that my time was my time and their time was their time. When I had to balance theirs and mine it was a struggle at first. (My dad was a truck driver, union organizer and idealist. he helped get the Teamsters in to Navajo Freight Lines.)

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