Letters to the editor

Readers respond to stories on parenting.


Agnes R. Howard’s article on the importance of doing chores in childhood was a breath of fresh air (“Put Them to Work,” March 3). My favorite line? “I’m ready for a competence revolution.’’ As a high school teacher and mother of three, I literally applauded when I read this line. What greater gift to this generation than the ability to take care of themselves and their environment? 

Karen Ruecker / Lynnfield

I thought I was the only one who believed in asking children to do chores. I’ve been training my kids to be well-adjusted adults since they were little. When I hear parents complain about how their teens don’t do this or that, I ask them whether they had their children do any chores when they were younger. The answer is always no. So I guess the moral of the story is you reap what you sow.


Kelly Q. Dantona / Foxborough

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There is evidence that children who do chores around the home develop greater resilience and greater self-confidence, skills that benefit them as they transition into adult roles. I would add that youth with physical and/or developmental disabilities should also be expected to participate in chores. The extra time and patience needed by parents are well worth the outcomes.

Dr. Kitty O’Hare / Stoughton

We are raising a generation of entitled young people who think that cleaning up is beneath them. Starting in elementary school, my children were required to — gasp! — clean the bathroom, do laundry, dust and vacuum their own rooms and their playroom, and a variety of other mundane yet necessary chores. They balked, loudly, as they were nearly alone in their peer group for having to do this work. Even some of their friends’ parents thought I was too tough. I didn’t win any popularity contests, but my children know what it takes to keep a house running and looking presentable. Funny things happen when kids are expected to participate and keep things clean — things stay cleaner! My son even asked for a vacuum for his college dorm room.

Sherry Schmidt / Sharon


Editor’s Note In “Miss Conduct’s All-in-One Career Fix-It Guide” (March 10), the last two words of the answer about layoffs were cut off. It should have read “Only then should you network to find something new.” We regret the error.

COMMENTS? Write to or The Boston Globe Magazine/Letters, PO Box 55819, Boston, MA 02205-5819. Letters are subject to editing.