Mini grown-up

Student takes on adult responsibilities at home

Patty Castillo, Social Media Coordinator

When sophomore Jennifer Jaiyeola opens the front door to her house, she calls out her brothers’ names, checking if they have come home from school yet. After a while of watching TV, Jaiyeola asks the boys about their homework. They get up and scramble through their bags to start. Jaiyeola, on the other hand, does not begin her homework. Instead she starts making dinner for not only her siblings, but also for her parents, who come home from work later in the day.

“I’ve been taking on the adult role in my house for about three years now,” Jaiyeola said. “I cook almost every day and do laundry every weekend. But for me it doesn’t just feel like cooking for my family, I feel like I am the only adult in the house [when my parents aren’t here].”

Jaiyeola’s responsibilities range from cleaning up the house on weekends, making full meals for her entire family and washing everyone’s clothes. Jaiyeola says her brothers understand her role in the house when the parents are not around, but they still mess with her.

“They listen to me when they want to listen or when it benefits them,” Jaiyeola said. “Whenever they need [me to do something], I get frustrated because they don’t understand I’ve just told them the [answer to what they have asked].”

According to Jaiyeola, her parents have not noticed that she does take a lot of responsibilities since they do not come home until after 8 p.m.

“I think complete chaos would start if I stopped taking the responsibilities I usually take at home,” Jaiyeola said. “Many of my friends just buy McDonalds or order pizza for dinner when their parents don’t cook.”

Jaiyeola feels she keeps her family grounded and doesn’t ever have too much of a problem for taking care of her siblings, she said she doesn’t always want to be the adult, but she knows that she’s that important to her family.

“I love my family, and I want to be there for them,” Jaiyeola said. “So if being the adult and cooking and cleaning can help my family, then I’m happy.”