Social Question

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

At what age did you and/or your children get their first official job?

Asked by Aesthetic_Mess (7863 points ) March 12th, 2012

In high school?
Before? After?
How did you juggle high school and a job?

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33 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

What is an ‘official’ job?

I was delivering papers (walking from house to house with a blue bag on my shoulder) around age 12,and I continued delivering papers through middle school.

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

@elbanditoroso Well I mean, an official job in the sense that you were of legal working age. In most states it’s 16, and in some, it’s 14.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I think I was 7 or 8 when I started getting stuff to do on our farm.

flutherother's avatar

My first job was picking potatoes during school holidays at the age of 10. This was only for two weeks a year. My first year round job was delivering milk at age 14. My son didn’t work until he left school and went to university and my daughter was the same.

Seaofclouds's avatar

I was 15 and it was a job at McDonald’s. Before that I use to help my uncle with his catering business occasionally on the weekends.

My children are still too young to have jobs at this point.

JustPlainBarb's avatar

I did babysitting starting at age 12.

But my first “real” job was working at a department store at age 16. I worked 4 hours a few nights a week and on Saturdays. It really turned out to be too difficult with all the homework I had .. so I didn’t keep it very long.

The next job I got .. was at 18 in the summer after high school grad. I worked in an amusement park running kids’ rides. That was fun.

cookieman's avatar

I started working at a tobacco store when I was fifteen.

MrItty's avatar

16, at McDonalds. Worked shifts of 4–7 on the weekdays, normal 8 hour shifts on the weekends.

SmashTheState's avatar

My parents forced me to start work at the age of about 11. Since no one would hire me, they held my allowance of 25 cents a week until I had enough to buy a buck and a brush, at which point I went door to door washing windows. By the age of 14, I was doing phone sales and janitorial work where I wasn’t seen by the public, so they could pay me below minimum wage at an age where it was illegal for them to hire me. My parents were lifelong victims of the capitalist system, labouring in miserable, thankless, soul-crushing government desk jobs to support the mortgage and children they were told was their responsibility to have, so they saw no reason why I should escape the fate which had been forced on them. I was not permitted to have “days off.” If I wasn’t in school, I had to work, earning peanuts to make some rich white prick richer. My father referred to this as a “work ethic.”

As a result of this, I am now a radical anarchist organizer and card-carrying Wobbly unionist who has dedicated his life to the overthrow of capitalism and all other systems of oppression.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@SmashTheState – rather than letting yourself be shackled by the experiences of your parents, and limited by their experiences, couldn’t you have risen to your OWN potential?

Ron_C's avatar

My first job started when I was 16 and I worked in a dairy store, my future wife also worked there.
My youngest daughter started a daily babysitting job when she was 14. She did very well she made between $60 to $120 dollars a week and practically raised our neighbor’s children. My oldest daughter started working at 16 then went into the Navy when she was 18.

I understand my father started work when he was about 8. He stood watch and hid moonshine when the police showed up. His mother, my grandmother, was famous in her town for running a successful bootleg business and also for the bribe money she paid the police.

I guess you could say that early work is a tradition in my family.

SuperMouse's avatar

When I was 10 I delivered newspapers. After I had to give up my paper route when I was around 12, I didn’t get another job until I was 17. My first job was at a fast food joint.

marinelife's avatar

I used to baby sit starting in 6th grade.

zenvelo's avatar

I delivered morning paper at age 12, but as the back-up as two older kids had the route. I also sold the first four function hand held calculators to hit the market in 1971, $50 each.

My first real job was valet parking cars when I was 17. $3 per hour, all cash, when minimum wage was $1.65. I worked 20 – 25 hours per week, one of the best jobs that anyone in my high school had.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@zenvelo Would that by any chance be the Bomar Brain?

I delivered newspaper with my brother. I was 12. I still remember getting a $5.00 tip every week from 1746 xxxxx St. I just checked the cost of living index to see what that was worth in today’s money – $35 tip per week! They gave us $20 as a Christmas present, too. ($140 today) That was a huge sum. Here I am, so many years later, and I still remember their house!

OpryLeigh's avatar

I was 16 years old when I got my first official job. I did various cash in hand jobs from the age of 12 years though.

Sunny2's avatar

I was a day camp counselor at 16. Maybe that doesn’t count. At seventeen I worked for an insurance company. I sat on a stool at a high desk and in a huge ledger, wrote with a pen you had to dip in ink. Names and numbers of policy owners. Felt like Bob Cratchit. I’m sure it’s all computerized now. And you wonder where all the jobs have gone.

Coloma's avatar

I started babysitting around 12–13 and my first “real” job was at 18 working as a receptionist for a fire alarm company.

tranquilsea's avatar

I delivered papers from the age of 8 on and it was quite legal. I started working at McDonalds at 15.

My oldest son got his first job (at a local grocery store) at 16. His school work hid the skids but there is only so much I can do to motivate him. He has to decide what is important and follow through with it.

livelaughlove21's avatar

I was 17 and in high school when I got my first job as a hostess at a restaurant. I stayed there, and eventually ended up being a server for awhile, until I graduated. As soon as I was free of the restraints of high school, I got the hell out of the food industry and never looked back.

As for juggling school and work, I only worked a couple days a week. The only reason I was working was to pay for my own gas and have some spending money. Oh, those were the days…

rojo's avatar

Me: at 16, in high school, KFC. Havn’t eaten there since.
Wife: 16, in high school, Jewelry store sales.
Son: 16 high school, construction cleanup
Daugher: 16 high school, CNA

We all just juggled things around to make them work.

wundayatta's avatar

I did lawn mowing and baby sitting from around age 12, probably. But my first official job (a job given to me by someone who wasn’t a relative or a friend of my parents’) came at age 17. I signed on as a farm hand on a dairy farm the summer before my senior year at high school. I also worked there the next summer, as well.

It is a job that had a major influence on my life. It contained the most embarrassing moment in my life and it gave me the idea for my first (and last) entrepreneurial effort in life.

gondwanalon's avatar

It was the summer just before my freshman year in high school. I was a pan washer at the Hollander Cafeteria. I made $1.00 per hour (1966) but they fed me very well on first class food. I resigned my position when school started so I could concentrate on my studies and also because my hands were worn raw from all the pan scrubbing. I used the money that I earned to buy 3 cheap shirts for school from K-Mart.

Esedess's avatar

I had my 1st job when I was 16 in high school… and I’ve been working ever since. At the time, I was so used to school just being a required part of life, and also so excited to be out in the real world working for once, that juggling both was easier than it would be for me now.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I began regularly babysitting jobs at age 10.
Before then, I had irregular jobs at our tavern, family farm-etc to make cash.

In HS, I owned a collectible shop with my mom. Other than babysitting, I didn’t work for anyone outside of my family until I was in my 20’s.

JLeslie's avatar

I was 14 in Jr. high. I worked as a salesperson selling jeans on commission at a pretty cool jean store.

If we count babysitting I was 11 the first time I babysat, but I wouldn’t count that personally.

zenvelo's avatar

@LuckyGuy I don’t remember the brand name or if they even had one. A friends dad had an electronics instrumentation business in Burlingame CA, and he had bought cases of these. He said he’d give us 5 bucks for everyone we sold. I sold a half dozen.

Cruiser's avatar

I baby sat at 12, caddied at 14 and flipped burgers for my first paycheck at 15.

My son baby sat at 12, started his own small engine repair business at 14 and got a job with the performing arts center through his school doing stage crew at 14 for his first real paycheck.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

I had my first job at 14. My daughters babysat around 14/15 and had jobs starting at age 16.

Haleth's avatar

Babysitting at age 12, then working in a coffeehouse at age 15. But before that, I was always trying to figure out ways to make money. I went around the neighborhood at age 5 or 6 trying to sell old toys door-to-door, but my mother put a stop to it as soon as she found out.

dabbler's avatar

Mowed lawns all over the neighborhood from age 12 or so on.
As a junior and senior in high school, pumped gas every Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 10, boy those were long days, and I smelled like gas when I got home.
Worked on a heavy underground electrical crew the summer after high school. We were pulling 34,500 volt “cables” beneath the streets with big purpose built machinery. That stuff weighed about 40 lbs per foot.
Worked my way through college, back when that was po$$ible. First bussing dishes, then as an assistant to various electrical engineers routing circuit boards and doing some programming.
Been working all along since until, years later, the first time I got laid off, I got three months severance pay. It was the longest stretch of time off I ever had – although looking for another job is not quite a vacation.

kitchi1's avatar

Age 11, summer after 5th grade, going into 6th. My mom let me work at the family kennel.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

I was 15. My older had a job at 15 and my younger was 16.

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