General Question

iceblu's avatar

How much should my time be worth?

Asked by iceblu (919points) March 18th, 2008

About every other night, my Dad makes me run down to the gas station and fill a 8 gallon tank up with Kerosene to fuel my house with heat.(He didn’t pay the oil company for the previous $600 bill, so he makes me fill it with this…which I don’t find very safe at all) He pays me $20 to fill the tank up, and thats about it… Details below…

(Carrying a 8 gallon tank for about a 2 minunte walk, along with the weather.[Tonight it was hailing out, and i was freezing my ass off] Plus gas back and forth from my house to the station, thats about 3 miles. Some nights its doubled too…)

So what do you think i should do? I was going to maybe change him a fee every time he wants me to do it, but i don’t know how much…

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29 Answers

bulbatron9's avatar

Be thankful, that your Father gives you a warm place to rest your head! You’re lucky he doesn’t make you give him $20.00. It takes more than you think to run a household. He is making a man out of you! You will appreciate this training, someday!

hairypalm's avatar

cancel you Internet and pay for gas

scamp's avatar

You said he already pays you $20.00. I don’t understand your question, but I agree with bulbatron9 .

Randy's avatar

Id have to agree with bulbatron9 as well.

iceblu's avatar

ahahha i knew something like this was going to happen, my dad isn’t a man, and he isn’t going to make a man out of me, my father is a coke head…. all the money he gives me is pry my own money to start with, or his mothers, my gmom….

oh, and he is in debt about $275,000…for the morgae and taxes and everything else…. talk about a man?

@scamp he pays me $20 for the kerosene, not the gas for my car….

@bulbatron9 i would totally agree with you on this, and probably wouldn’t have posted this, but its sad i don’t have someone to teach me the ways, and i didn’t think i did bad raising myself, i just feel like he should be doing this…if he wants the heat, i don’t need it, i have a heater for my room, its called my computer

omfgTALIjustIMDu's avatar

If you dislike it that much, find somewhere else to live. I know it’s easier said than done, but your dad does not sound like the best role model and you might be better off somewhere else.

Randy's avatar

Ah, that’s sucks. It sounds like even if you charge him, you won’t get any money outta the guy in that case.

sferik's avatar

Theoretically, your wage should be based on market value.

Let’s say someone else is willing to give you $25 for the same chore. You could go work for them. Your father might then search for someone else to perform the labor for $20. If he can’t find anyone, he may decide to offer you $30. This continues until a fair wage is set by the market.

Obviously the theoretical valuation of your labor is complicated by the fact that you’re negotiating with someone who is 1) your father and 2) a coke head.

I think it’s perfectly reasonable for parents to expect their children to perform certain chores with little or no compensation but your father shouldn’t be abusing your time with tasks that are dangerous.

scamp's avatar

ok, I see. If you told him you were going to charge him, under the circumstances, do you think he would pay you?

ppcakes's avatar

go live with your mom!

iceblu's avatar

@scamp, well i dnt know yet, i wanted something put together before i approached him…

@ppcakes, if i did that, i would beat the shit out of my Mom’s, Boyfriends’ Son…

bulbatron9's avatar

Learn from his mistakes then, so you don’t follow the same path! Regardless of his problems, you are not sleeping on a bench in Jersey! My Father with the help of his friends snorted about $750,000, a new Porsche, 80 acres, a house, and his one true love(my mom) up his nose. So in one sense, I know where you are coming from, I was only four at the time (24yrs ago) but he finally got his shit together.

sferik's avatar

What would happen if you refused to do the chore and got a part-time job for money?

It seems to me like this is dangerous work that should only be done by a professional. Have you considered contacting Child Protective Services?

ppcakes's avatar

@iceblue, your mom is a nice lady and you had plenty of space there, plus then you were closer to me so take you loss and go beat that boy up!

scamp's avatar

I hate to say it, but I don’t think he would give you much more than 5 bucks, and that’s only if he agreed to pay at all. I can’t see him wanting to pay much more than that for $20.00 of fuel. does your grandmother live with you too? If so, do it for her, not him. Just think of it as keeping her and yourself warm. Sorry about your situation.

iceblu's avatar

@sferik i have a job, the reason i want him to pay me is because he ALWAYS makes me do it at the most obscene hours of the night, or when i just want to sleep after a long day, or i just want to relax. And thats my time, so i think i should be payed for My time.

And if i refused? well lets just say it wouldn’t be good, he doesn’t like the answer “n – o”

@ppcakes i know i love my mommmy, shes the greatest, but i would go to jail…, and thats all she needs… ever tho i would love to.

@bulbatron9 Believe me, am i, hate the man for everything he did, and still does, but if it wasnt for him i wouldnt be where i was right now. And there is alot of other factors, about his heath, but thats his fault too. And your right, but sometimes how it is around here, i wish i was somewhere on a bench by myself, so i don’t have to deal with him

@scamp no, she lives about 15 mins away, if she did, i wouldnt be here right now ever discussing any of this, but its only myself and my dad, and my room is fine with out ANY heat, because my computer heats it up enough…

ppcakes's avatar

@iceblu, you know thats what bailbonds are for and i would be there to bail your silly butt out of jail each and everytime, as long as you paid me back in full! i would miss you too much if i didnt, i cant text you in jail!

iceblu's avatar

@ppcakes… your right kid, i am actually thinking about it, she might have her BF make me a room in the basement, and there they actually pay for their oil, and its only ONCE a month…not 4 times a WEEK… .;;

jz1220's avatar

iceblu, would you consider buying the gasoline before being asked? That way, you can do it on your own time, as long as you know you need to do it about once every couple of days. And then, just ask your father to pay you back. Sorry about your situation.

iceblu's avatar

@jz1220 ....that doesnt sound like a bad idea… and its alright, im trying to sound the least pathetic and needy here. But thx, you too scamp and bulbatron9 and everyone else

bulbatron9's avatar

My Father was so strung out, that he thought he was Jesus(literally) until I was eight years old. Have you ever seen the movie I am Sam? That is how I felt growing up, thinking “Is my Dad retarded or something?” Indescribable experience! When I was eight I said “Dad, you know you’re not Jesus, right.” No response. It was a couple of weeks before he would even, really, talk to me, but it was like I snapped him back into reality that day. Since then, he hasn’t mentioned that, again. I love my Father, he truly made a man out of me in my adolescence. When he got his head back, he taught me everything that he knew. Which kind of leads into this thread from the where do you work question – I am a Carpenter. At 8 years old my father started teaching me how to read and draw blueprints. When I was 12 years old I started doing residential wiring with my father and grandfather during the summer. By the time I was 15 I wired my first house, by myself. Then learned how to do plumbing in a couple of months. I then started laying brick and block for two and a half years. Finally, I found my true love in framing. Apprenticed in that for three and a half years. It is a very rewarding profession. To start with nothing but raw materials, and finish with, possibly the biggest investment most people make in their lives is very rewarding. I have been in construction almost all my life, and I feel I have earned the title “Carpenter”!

iceblu's avatar

@bulbatron9 Ill be sure to watch it tonight, thats a very powerful story, i appreciate the time you took to write that too, and also when i was about 7 or 8, is when my father got me into computers, it was his hobby, and then i kinda just took off from there. Until i was about 13 is when everything collapsed. When i was little i didn’t know anything, until people explained to me what that tap tap tap sound was on the CD case or pocket mirror he had… And as you earned the title “Carpenter”, i get the title “Computer Technician”, and if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t have.

bulbatron9's avatar

I really don’t share that with many people, but it just felt right. I wanted you to know that you’re not the only one. Best Wishes!

Spargett's avatar


How old are you? You need to get out of there. Live your own life. I came from a very rough home. I ended up leaving when I was 16 (much easier when you’re 18). But it was the best thing I ever did for myself.

Now I live in San Francisco, I have my own design firm I started, a beautiful girlfriend, and much more. None of this would have happened if I stayed in that environment.

You seem like a smart guy. You need to spread your wings and make a life for yourself. Shed yourself of the parasitic relationships. Honestly, the sky is the limit. It’ll take some work, but there are so many options and I know it can be easy to loose scope of things.

Please feel free to message me if you want to chat further.

scamp's avatar

I’m so sorry about your situation. If you don’t think you could get along with that boy at your mom’s house, would living with your Grandmother be an option? If your Dad is going through money as quickly as you say, he may lose the house soon anyway, so it might be in your best interest to make plans now. I think jz1220 ‘s idea of buying it ahead of time is a good one. If you do that, buy it and put it where your Dad won’t see it, then when he gives you the money to go buy some, you can pocket it,(as repayment) and then you won’t have to go out at odd hours or in bed weather. I really hope things improve for you.

cwilbur's avatar

@iceblu: you know he’s going to ask you to fill the tank; why don’t you bring a container when you leave for work, and fill it up on your way home? It seems to me that waiting until he asks and then grumbling about it is horribly passive-aggressive.

And it doesn’t sound like your living situation is great, but playing games about who does which chores, and asking to be paid for doing something you benefit from, doesn’t seem to me like it will make the situation any more pleasant.

iceblu's avatar

@scamp my grandmother is %100 Italian, and her mouth doesn’t stop for the law…i would put a bullet though my head if i lived with her, don’t get me wrong i love my nonna to death.

@Spargett I’m 18, and already i have moved 4 times away from this place. I do plan on it leaving tho, i can’t right now, i need to save up at more money. And in the field im in, it shouldnt be hard for me to get work.

@cwilbur well to my work, there is no gas stations that have kerosene…and when i wake up for work, my father isn’t usually up to pay me, and if i pay for it, he will never pay me back. And if we were playing games, i would have had checkmate by now. And your right, but i don’t know when we need it. I have have to wait, till he asks me, which is usually at night.

scamp's avatar

Given all the circumstances you have listed above it looks like your only option is to grin and bear it unfortunately.

shorty's avatar

I’m sorry I don’t understand. If you are indeed 18 years old and you don’t like your living situation, why do you continue to go back to it? It is not un-normal for someone who owns a house to owe a large amount of money. How much money are you paying toward the grocery and electric bill and rent, etc.? If you are indeed working why would it be so hard to buy the kerosene in advance and not let him know and be reimbursed? If the job is not supplying your needs, find a second job.

I really feel for you having to living with a dad who is hooked on coke but it is your choice to live like that. You said two things, you would either beat up the boy at your mothers house or if you lived with your grandmother you would put a bullet through your head. Sounds like you aren’t willing to try for something better or it’s not better in your thoughts. The question to me would be is there any way you could get help for your dad and you. I really hear through the lines, you love your dad but you don’t love what he has become. Sometimes there are deep imbedded wounds that are unbearable and wrong choices are made as a result of these wounds. He needs help and if he is not willing to get it you need to move out.

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