Response

At the beginning of this short story, I was shocked at how intense it already became through the narrator’s way of speaking. It was clear to me that it was a mother or a caretaker teaching a young girl how to do daily chores correctly without missing any steps. Many people may have read this story and thought to themselves what a cruel way of speaking to a child this may have been, but one must always remember that everyone is taught things differently. Some parents are extremely strict and others are very easy going. This story was very interesting because it shows the love she has for the child in such a different way, although it was tough love, the mother wants the child to become responsible. The narrator clearly demonstrates that she wants nothing but the best for the young girl, to be able to accomplish things on her own without depending on anyone as she gets older. The narrator wants her to learn how to be wise and independent. I’m not sure when this story is taking place but, I believe it must have been many years ago due to the fact that it was mostly just telling a young girl how to live and not a young boy as well. In that case, this may have been how many girls had to live back then, it’s a bit scary because does this mean the young girl would never be able to experience what it’s like to make her own decisions instead of being told what to do step by step with every action she must take? Would she ever experience the fun every child must have before growing up? The way I imagined this story in my head is that the young girl must have felt trapped in her own home, and afraid of not doing her chores correctly the way her mother expected her to do them. I also pictured the mother forcing her beliefs of what a woman SHOULD do into her daughter’s brain, but never hesitated to think of what her daughter would rather do differently and still manage to get things done the right way at the end. Some of the information being told to the young girl may have been beneficial but I believe the rest must have been very overwhelming and unnecessary, to have to wake up every day being told instructions on how to live your life. For example, I believe any young girl would not know what to think or say when a mother like the narrator explains to them how to make their own at home medicine to have an abortion, every culture is different but this isn’t the type of information one should be teaching their children, especially not at a young age. Towards the end of the story, I came to realize that the mother never considered what other options may have been better to teaching her daughter the ways to live, and never considered to hear what ideas her daughter may have had. This could have led her daughter to either becoming just like her mother when she is an adult or not being as social due to never being able to speak her mind.

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