2

votes

Represent SAD or poverty?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created November 12, 2011 at 4:35 AM

I'm not sure if this is a question I should be asking on PH, but I would like all of your opinions. Here it goes.

My mom is sooo hellbent on getting me to work at McDonalds. She is convinced it is the only place that will hire me at my age, and she's threatening to cut off my funds (which I use to buy essentials like food) if I don't get a job. I've applied to many other places, but have not had much luck.

I'm wondering what you all think I should do in this situation. McDonalds (and fast food restaurants in general) sicken me. I don't eat at them, I don't advise other people to eat at them, and I just cannot imagine myself handing people their genetically modified, oxidized oil fried, synthetic hormone injected "meat" patties, and wishing them a good day. I would feel terrible. I know it is their choice to eat there, but... I don't know.

Am I being too picky? Be honest. I am at a standstill and am not sure whether to just give in to what my mom is saying and live with the guilt, or end up piss poor in order to sleep better at night.

*I am thankful for everyone's advice :) I will definitely take it into consideration. I will have to come to a decision soon... *

I am determined to keep looking for a job in other areas, but I'm a little discouraged.

Cf4e7d927a48582cc22adbe59bfd0b2d

(753)

on November 12, 2011
at 09:38 PM

I'm sixteen....

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 12, 2011
at 09:08 PM

How old are you?

14fa79ce4dec5c01dc8f54195238f138

(58)

on November 12, 2011
at 08:59 PM

Rafi...as said above, just an option. I know that it is absurd to think that one would want to serve the country that gives the freedom to Hack away.

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:38 PM

Not THE light, but A light. What is the problem with that?

15e684f6f716f88c99f641098a6e06ca

(922)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:45 PM

the military is the light at the end of the tunnel? ay, dios mio!

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:14 PM

I don't like that way of thinking. If I'd do this I'd be doing something I don't like for my whole life. Don't wait till tomorrow, start now.

14fa79ce4dec5c01dc8f54195238f138

(58)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:11 PM

Roberto...Last time I checked it wasn't illegal to work at Mc D's.

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:18 PM

Actually, Roberto, no it is not "a bit like saying you could sell drugs..." I specifically pointed out that it is not a moral issue such as selling drugs.

C44bb43563e520dff542e7a39a7eb31e

(105)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:54 AM

I'm sorry, but this mother isn't being a 'tough task-master', she's being negligent. She doesn't have to provide anything for her child other than money for food, and even that she's trying to wriggle out of. Kenzie, you are in a very unfortunate situation where your parents are either unable or unwilling to fulfil their responsibilities and provide for your basic needs. You should be worrying about graduting high school right now, not worrying about where your next meal is coming from. The folks who work at the welfare office will understand that and see your situation for what it is.

Medium avatar

(8239)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:42 AM

Thanks for the additional information. I get a feel for the parental dynamics: dad willing but not so able, mom able but a being kind of a tough task-master). And Alaska, yep: it's big and broad and ... Whole Foods, few and far between. Keep applying for jobs. Bear in mind, that filling out job applications is the bare minimum. Give a good sense of yourself to the main person, the manager or whatever. Convey that you're willing, dependable, ready to work, and customer-service oriented. And of course, convey all that, only if you really feel you can follow through with the promise.

C44bb43563e520dff542e7a39a7eb31e

(105)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:35 AM

If you're a minor and your mother is threatening to cut off your food supply then I'd go to the state welfare office and see if you can get foodstamps. Seriously, situations like this are exactly what social services are there for.

Cf4e7d927a48582cc22adbe59bfd0b2d

(753)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:25 AM

Also, I live in a town of about 5000 people, if I remember correctly. Being in Alaska, everything is spread out, the nearest city would be an hour commute each way daily, which would drain a lot of the money I earned, so I'm somewhat limited. However, I do have about 7 places I've applied for, and I'm planning on checking in with a few of them tomorrow morning. I've applied at a few restaurants, some grocery stores, and a thrift shop, heh.

Cf4e7d927a48582cc22adbe59bfd0b2d

(753)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:22 AM

Thank you for the response. It was very in depth, which I like. To clarify a few things, I'm sixteen, not living with my mom, however she still has custody of me. I've been having to scrounge up money for rent (staying with a friend half time, dad the other half) by doing odd jobs, and commissions for art. The only thing she really helps me with is food... So if I lose that, I'm screwed, really. My dad is willing to help, but he doesn't have nearly the financial stability my mom has, and he has a lot of medical bills, so I try not to burden him too much with my problems.

22fd82abf435768244f8d074430cd1e6

(590)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:11 AM

Mmm that's a biT like saying you could sell drugs because if you don't do it somebody else will anyway. That said I don't think McDonald is that evil so I would definitely work there. Watch the movie fat head it will make it easier for you !

15e684f6f716f88c99f641098a6e06ca

(922)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:14 AM

by the way, do you think your mom would be open to an alternate proposal where you spend some interval time making yourself marketable? a job at a mcdonald's isn't exactly going to help your future. learn an employable, demonstrable in-demand skill (coding jumps to mind because it worked for me but there are other avenues) or do a meaningful internship at a job in a field of your interest. those are ways to build towards good paying jobs / actual careers. maybe unpaid work isn't an option right now but your mom might be open to you showing initiative towards the long-term.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:53 AM

In a situation like this, it's probably important to have both our opinions (and those below.) Lots to think about.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:52 AM

Kind of sounds like she's feeling a moral dilemma, though.

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:50 AM

PS: My first job was McDonald's and I LOVED it! Had a blast working there...

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:49 AM

Nice answer. I wouldn't have even bothered had I seen yours first!

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11 Answers

8
Medium avatar

on November 12, 2011
at 06:01 AM

Don't settle too quickly on the dichotomy between MacDonald's versus "I haven't had much luck finding a job I want" (my paraphrase).

Create a list of jobs you COULD take if hired. Start with values you identify with, such as Whole Foods or some other "good" organization. Branch out to stores and companies whose product may not inspire you but doesn't offend you: Banana Republic, Gap, etc. Bed, Bath, & Beyond; store, Starbucks, etc. If you don't have at least 20 decent options for that list, and you live in a town larger than Mayberry, you're not serious.

I urge you to take this tack because I agree with the writer above who said "having a bad job is terrible." And here let's define "bad" as: if you really, really dislike the company and its product, then it's a "bad" job in terms of your values. Which is ultimately what matters. If, on the other hand, you could work at a fast food place like McDonald's, and identify with their salads, then do it.

Now the tough-love part. How old are you? What are you doing in this position of "mom can cut off my funds if...." including "the funds I use to buy food..." All due respect: your mom doesn't owe you a living, especially if you are 18 or older. If you are under 18, well, she's paying the bills and (one surmises) giving you a place to live, free. If your mom is being tyrannical, trust me: tyrant and parent are synonymous in many real-world dictionaries.

If I were in your shoes (sounds easy to say, but I have worn shoes not much different from yours), I would focus really hard on finding some job as described in paragraph 2. Yes, the economy sucks, but that's a subset of "Life itself can be suck-y no matter how prosperous the times might or might not be." Companies are hiring for Christmas. Get hungry ??? not just for Paleo fare, but for employment and the sense of confidence, capability, freedom, and independence that are possible for self-supporting people, in ways that can never be for people who depend on the charity of others, including others called family.

C44bb43563e520dff542e7a39a7eb31e

(105)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:35 AM

If you're a minor and your mother is threatening to cut off your food supply then I'd go to the state welfare office and see if you can get foodstamps. Seriously, situations like this are exactly what social services are there for.

Medium avatar

(8239)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:42 AM

Thanks for the additional information. I get a feel for the parental dynamics: dad willing but not so able, mom able but a being kind of a tough task-master). And Alaska, yep: it's big and broad and ... Whole Foods, few and far between. Keep applying for jobs. Bear in mind, that filling out job applications is the bare minimum. Give a good sense of yourself to the main person, the manager or whatever. Convey that you're willing, dependable, ready to work, and customer-service oriented. And of course, convey all that, only if you really feel you can follow through with the promise.

C44bb43563e520dff542e7a39a7eb31e

(105)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:54 AM

I'm sorry, but this mother isn't being a 'tough task-master', she's being negligent. She doesn't have to provide anything for her child other than money for food, and even that she's trying to wriggle out of. Kenzie, you are in a very unfortunate situation where your parents are either unable or unwilling to fulfil their responsibilities and provide for your basic needs. You should be worrying about graduting high school right now, not worrying about where your next meal is coming from. The folks who work at the welfare office will understand that and see your situation for what it is.

Cf4e7d927a48582cc22adbe59bfd0b2d

(753)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:22 AM

Thank you for the response. It was very in depth, which I like. To clarify a few things, I'm sixteen, not living with my mom, however she still has custody of me. I've been having to scrounge up money for rent (staying with a friend half time, dad the other half) by doing odd jobs, and commissions for art. The only thing she really helps me with is food... So if I lose that, I'm screwed, really. My dad is willing to help, but he doesn't have nearly the financial stability my mom has, and he has a lot of medical bills, so I try not to burden him too much with my problems.

Cf4e7d927a48582cc22adbe59bfd0b2d

(753)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:25 AM

Also, I live in a town of about 5000 people, if I remember correctly. Being in Alaska, everything is spread out, the nearest city would be an hour commute each way daily, which would drain a lot of the money I earned, so I'm somewhat limited. However, I do have about 7 places I've applied for, and I'm planning on checking in with a few of them tomorrow morning. I've applied at a few restaurants, some grocery stores, and a thrift shop, heh.

8
6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:45 AM

I think that unless this is a moral dilema, which I don't think it is, then go ahead and apply. The people eating at McDonald's are going to eat there regardless of whether you work there or not. You are not out on the street corner, peddling McDonald's to unsuspecting children. The people have to make a conscious decision to eat there. And there are not too many people who believe it is healthy anymore, so they know what they are getting.

It is so hard to find work these days. I would take the job, especially since you have applied to other places with no luck. It does not have to be forever, just until you find something more palatable.

22fd82abf435768244f8d074430cd1e6

(590)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:11 AM

Mmm that's a biT like saying you could sell drugs because if you don't do it somebody else will anyway. That said I don't think McDonald is that evil so I would definitely work there. Watch the movie fat head it will make it easier for you !

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:18 PM

Actually, Roberto, no it is not "a bit like saying you could sell drugs..." I specifically pointed out that it is not a moral issue such as selling drugs.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:52 AM

Kind of sounds like she's feeling a moral dilemma, though.

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:50 AM

PS: My first job was McDonald's and I LOVED it! Had a blast working there...

14fa79ce4dec5c01dc8f54195238f138

(58)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:11 PM

Roberto...Last time I checked it wasn't illegal to work at Mc D's.

5
13a44ea00b0c9af0b6d0f3d5f5c2cfca

(7223)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:51 AM

If you need a job, you need a job. They are hard to come by right now, so you may not have a lot of options. There are far worse things in the world than working at McD's. No one is going to make you eat the food and no one makes anyone else eat there, either. I would encourage you to keep up your job search for something you like better, but take the McD's job if that's all you can find right now.

4
C44bb43563e520dff542e7a39a7eb31e

(105)

on November 12, 2011
at 06:05 AM

Your mom may be convinced that McDonalds will hire you, but there's no guarantee of that. I wouldn't just assume that's an option.

I don't know how old you are, but I started working at the age of 14, and by the time I was 18 I'd had several different jobs. Most of them were food service, but I did work doing telephone surveys once. Other friends around my age at that time worked at plant nurseries, potting plants or stocking shelves. You could always be a bagger at a grocery store (if they have baggers in your area). I knew other teenagers who worked doing labor or light office work for their parents' business or for the parents of a friend. I even had one friend who worked at a cookie factory, though she was 17, so a little bit older than the rest of us.

Applying for and interviewing for jobs is work, and that's true no matter how old you are. You have to be persistent, deal with a lot of rejection, and really get good at being charming and selling yourself. And by the way, young people like yourself, who can seem so quick and bright and alive compared to folks in middle age, can be very impressive!

4
15e684f6f716f88c99f641098a6e06ca

(922)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:02 AM

Having a terrible job is terrible. I worked one summer as a telemarketer for a credit card company feeding on people with bad credit and it was totally soul-crushing. I've had jobs I've liked and jobs I've hated since then but nothing so bad as that where I just felt revolted by my role in the machine. I ended up not showing up as often as possible (it was a flexible schedule but I was raising alarms) and I quit midsummer cuz I just couldn't take it anymore. I spent the last few weeks of that summer handing out fliers on a hot crowded nyc street corner for a nearby computer store which paid $3.50/hour plus one free soda per day. I was so much happier with that. That's how evil I felt at the telemarketing stint.

Follow your conscience. Can you get by without a job? I used to scrape by as an unemployed teen with creative budgeting / pilfering my parents pantry. If you can tell you're not going to be ok with it already, don't bother. Be creative and find another way.

15e684f6f716f88c99f641098a6e06ca

(922)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:14 AM

by the way, do you think your mom would be open to an alternate proposal where you spend some interval time making yourself marketable? a job at a mcdonald's isn't exactly going to help your future. learn an employable, demonstrable in-demand skill (coding jumps to mind because it worked for me but there are other avenues) or do a meaningful internship at a job in a field of your interest. those are ways to build towards good paying jobs / actual careers. maybe unpaid work isn't an option right now but your mom might be open to you showing initiative towards the long-term.

4
08cc3168845201b71e14751163b28940

on November 12, 2011
at 04:51 AM

Just get a job. Any job. After you are supporting yourself and not living off of your parents, then you can work for the luxury of finding a job that you feel good about.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:14 PM

I don't like that way of thinking. If I'd do this I'd be doing something I don't like for my whole life. Don't wait till tomorrow, start now.

4
96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:43 AM

This is a hard one because you obviously feel strongly, Kenzie.

First, if you ultimately choose to work at McDonald's you can retain your personal principles by continuing to follow your chosen lifestyle.

Although you and I may see much that is wrong with the fast food of today, it's also true that those who choose to eat there have every right to do so. For some, it's an unfortunate habit and for others a special or occasional treat. No one makes them go there--they want to go.

If circumstances forced me to work there, I certainly wouldn't tell the customers how good the food was but I wouldn't bad mouth it either. After all, I eat a lot of fatty meat and many of my friends privately believe I'm jeopardizing my health but they honor my right to choose.

Whatever you decide, you deserve credit for wanting to do the right thing.

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:49 AM

Nice answer. I wouldn't have even bothered had I seen yours first!

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 04:53 AM

In a situation like this, it's probably important to have both our opinions (and those below.) Lots to think about.

3
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:40 AM

One thing would be to find a smoothie place or coffe place or ice cream place. Something where there is no cooking.

2
6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on November 12, 2011
at 04:52 PM

Jobs are stepping stones and a great way to network. This job is not forever, and if the location is near your house it might be worth taking for time and convenience sake. Take the job and keep looking for another one if you feel you need the money now.

1
54578cc6508b657cad1da21cdf76d74e

(149)

on November 13, 2011
at 02:31 AM

i remember asking my professor a similar question, he taught revolutionary theory and social action and showed us the most horrific film about what Dole was doing to Africans (and others), i knew that the company that owned dole owned the university food services where i worked, and i felt terrible for getting my rent/tuition/food money from that company. He saw my point and told me i needed to stay on my feet - and then as soon as i was able to do otherwise, i would, but if i cut my support out from under me, i would be less able to do "good work" and social action in the future. do it for now until and know that you will do better as soon as you are able to support yourself. Lisa (work for a cooperative now)

1
14fa79ce4dec5c01dc8f54195238f138

on November 12, 2011
at 05:26 PM

Unfortunately you are in a very tough situaton. I agree with most that you have to take what you can get for the time being. You may not be interested but, when you turn 18, the military offers jobs of all kinds without being in a combat zone. You could be trained in a profession of your choice, receive full medical benefits and a paycheck. When you are done, you can get a civilian job with your training, and/or continue your education with the money set aside for you in the GI Bill (money for college). The reason I say this, is to let you see that there is some light at the end of the tunnel. Two years is not that long.

6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:38 PM

Not THE light, but A light. What is the problem with that?

15e684f6f716f88c99f641098a6e06ca

(922)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:45 PM

the military is the light at the end of the tunnel? ay, dios mio!

14fa79ce4dec5c01dc8f54195238f138

(58)

on November 12, 2011
at 08:59 PM

Rafi...as said above, just an option. I know that it is absurd to think that one would want to serve the country that gives the freedom to Hack away.

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