Why I think birds are a lot like people

Bushtits mass on a birdfeeder in Salem, Oregon.

Image via Wikipedia

I have a couple of bird feeders, a suet feeder, and a bird bath outside my kitchen window.  Usually watching the birds is relaxing.  However, Wednesday I heard a terrible ruckus outside and rushed to the kitchen window in fear that a wild cat was out there terrorizing the birds.  Nope, not at all.  What I saw was a demanding, loud young bird sitting on top of the suet feeder.  It was screeching at its poor harried mother to feed it NOW!!  The mother kept hopping down to the bar on the arch, grabbing the suet as fast as she could,  then hurriedly placing the food in the wide-open mouth of the youngster.  All the while, the young bird continued its very vocal demands for more food, more food, faster, mama, faster.

This brought to mind the many times I’ve seen children making ridiculous demands of their parents (the young bird was sitting directly on top of the feeder and could have easily reached right in to get all the food he needed, but instead of doing for himself, he felt entitled to sit there while his mother was wearing herself out administering to his needs).  It also reminded me of the many times I’ve seen parents (usually mothers) doing things for their children that the children could, and should, be doing for themselves.

The only difference was that the mother bird was  teaching her young one how to get the food he needed on his own, while so many human mothers continue to do things for their children long past the time they should have learned to do for themselves (mothers doing their grown children’s laundry, cleaning up after their lazy teenagers instead of demanding that they pick up after themselves).  Instead of teaching children how to survive in this world, too many mothers (and fathers) are teaching their kids how to be leeches.  Somehow I don’t think that’s doing anyone any good, not the parents and definitely not the kids. 

Come on, parents…raise your children to fly away…they’ll always fly back to the nest, but at least they’ll become contributing members of society instead of whiny brats with a sense of entitlement.