Created By: Oreochan on January 4, 2012 Last Edited By: Oreochan on March 10, 2012
Troped

Sent Off To Work For Relatives

The common plot in which,parents send their kids to work at a relatives place for a period of time.

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Trope

Tags: Rolling Updates as usual.

Indices:Occupation Tropes

This is going to be launched on Saturday.

Parents send their kids to relative's to work for their relative in the country, who is usually a grandparent, aunt or uncle. To learn responsibility and to do work, learn some discipline or to fix any other problems instead of sitting around all day. Also, maybe because the kid is the only one fit enough to work to get more money.

This trope is common in Coming of Age stories. When, the child is now has to work for the relative's. In the first week, they will usually try to get a way of doing it or complain that there isn't any TV, games, or any other entertainment they are used to. But they are eventually forced to work anyway. They tend to make a lot of mistakes at first. But, when they go through a Hard Work Montage, they get the hang of it and receive Character Development.

The kids are usually sent to work on the relative's farm, ranch or any other business. The child is usually a City Mouse if the story is set in the country and may complain or try to get around being to the relative's place.

In other stories, a Country Mouse kid might have to be sent to the city so that they can have some education in a school there. They are sent there so they can work for the relative, and won't won't be a burden, when the rest of the family can't work are get enough money to support themselves. The child in this story tends not to have as much problems like the City Mouse. They also might actually look forward to being in the city. Although, sometimes Country Mouse in other stories will be just as lazy and uncooperative as the typical City Mouse.

This is Truth in Television, as sometimes parents want the children to get work experience or earn money for the family since they are unable to.

Examples

Anime and Manga
  • Suzuka: Yamato is sent to his aunt's girl's only dormitory where his duties involve cleaning the baths. His parent's sure weren't trying to punish him by sending him to work there.
  • Birdy the Mighty: After everyone in her family/household is dead, to causes both related and unrelated to the plot, Sayaka is sent to work on a farm with relatives.

Film
  • In the 2006 film The Ultimate Gift, one of Jason's first "gifts" is the gift of hard work. He is sent to a ranch in the middle of nowhere, to work for a close friend of his grandfather's, until he understands the value of hard work.
Literature
  • In the backstory to the Earth's Children series, as a teen Jondolar got sent to his divorced dad's new settlement to learn a trade after he got in trouble for beating up another character so bad it knocked his teeth out.
  • Discworld: This is standard practice for dwarfs, who are sent to their already-established relatives in (usually) Anhk-Morpork, learning a trade and sending money home. Others stay in the mines, but there's little connotation of punishment. Carrot Ironfoundersson was sent to join the Watch as he was a human raised by dwarfs.
  • Chronicles of Prydain:
    • works Craddoc's farm thinking mistakenly that Craddoc is his real father.
    • Eilonwy is sent to the Isle of Mona to learn to be a lady, "working" at being a princess for several years.

Newspaper comics
  • For Better or for Worse: The Pattersons have sent Michael, Elizabeth, and April to work on a farm in the Prairie provinces in Canada.

Theatre
  • In the Rodgers and Hart musical Babes in Arms, this is the fate the protagonists are trying to avoid by putting on a show.

Western Animation
  • Adventures from the Book of Virtues: In the episode "Selflessness", Annie is sent by her parents to work at her younger cousins' house.
  • King of the Hill:
    • In one episode, Connie Souphanousinphone, the nerdy Laotian girl next door, is desperate to get a summer internship with Peggy because the alternative is spending the summer on a "family fishing boat in Laos" because her father Kahn thinks it will look good on her college applications.
    • In a later episode of King of the Hill, Connie's badgirl cousin from LA, "Tid Pao" (voiced by Lucy Lui) is punished by being sent to work on her Uncle's ranch, who gives her a stern warning upon arrival:
"I'm last Uncle you got. You screw up here, we send you back with Grandma in Laos!"

Real Life
  • Benjamin Franklin was apprenticed to his half-brother, a printer. That's why he ran off to Philadelphia from his native Boston.
Community Feedback Replies: 48
  • January 4, 2012
    Shnakepup
    Does it have to be a farm? I can't think of the specific example, but I'm pretty sure I've seen this done similarly with other settings, like a ranch, or a relative's backwoods cabin. Not farming exactly, see, but other "hard work is required to be here"-type settings.
  • January 4, 2012
    Oreochan
    All right,I'm gonna go expand it. What should it be renamed to?
  • January 4, 2012
    Shnakepup
    Hmm, I dunno, since I can't remember any examples :P

    Maybe Banished To The Relatives For The Summer or something like that?
  • January 4, 2012
    Oreochan
    I guess that could ork. It's a little too long though.
  • January 4, 2012
    CaveCat
    How about Working For Your Relatives for the title?
  • January 4, 2012
    Oreochan
    That's good,but I'll name it Sent Off To Work For Relatives.
  • January 4, 2012
    randomsurfer
    I think this is the premise of Georgia Rule - bratty teen (Lindsay Lohan) gets sent to her grandmother's (Jane Fonda) house to work. Not really sure since I didn't see it.
  • January 4, 2012
    VincentGaribaldi
    Wasn't this the premise of Second Hand Lions? Also Relatively Hard Working?
  • January 4, 2012
    nman
    Does this have to be to learn discipline, like a "Grr, my child is stereotypically rebellious, I will send them off to work at the farm", or could it just be "sent to work at a relative's place of business for any reason".

    Take this example, for example:
    • Suzuka: Yamato is sent to his aunt's girl's only dormitory where his duties involve cleaning the baths. His parent's sure weren't trying to punish him by sending him to work there.
  • January 5, 2012
    Oreochan
    I was going for the former but I guess I can expand it.
  • January 5, 2012
    Shnakepup
    I wouldn't say it has to be for discipline or anything like that, but I think it has to be for some reason; otherwise there's no trope here (i.e. it's just a kid visiting his relatives for awhile). For example, I'm pretty sure I've seen this trope used when a kid is "troubled" by things back home, so his parents will send him off to an uncle or aunt's house in the country in order to help them come to terms with whatever problems they've been having.
  • January 5, 2012
    nman
    ^ The written laconic is "Parents send their kids to work at a relatives", so if they are on a vacation and just visiting, they probably aren't working for the relative.
  • January 6, 2012
    Oreochan
    Yes, it probably should have a reason. The kids are usually working relative's place for the summer at least part of it.
  • January 6, 2012
    randomsurfer
    In the backstory to the Earths Children series, as a teen Jondolar got sent to his divorced dad's new settlement to learn a trade after he got in trouble for beating up another character so bad it knocked his teeth out.
  • January 7, 2012
    Goldfritha
    Real Life: Benjamin Franklin was apprenticed to his half-brother, a printer. That's why he ran off to Philadelphia from his native Boston.

    Should have a comparison to Staying With Friends.
  • January 8, 2012
    Oreochan
    I think one of the things that is in Staying With Friends the kids who have to make the choice, and in this usually it's done against their will. Also, they don't live usually don't live there permanently.
  • January 9, 2012
    tustin2121
    Truth In Television: I worked at my uncle's for several summers during high school. ....granted it was a photography studio and not a farm, but given the broad brush of this trope's description, it fits.

    Obviously, I'm not saying to add THIS as an example, that was just my logic for adding a Truth In Television, about parents doing this so kids get work experience, even in this day and age.
  • January 9, 2012
    Oreochan
    ^ It orginally was for farm,ranchs and the like. But seeing it isn't limited to those, I broaded it.

    I wouldn't add it as an example anyway, since it's Troper Tales. But I do think this trope is Truth In Television.
  • January 9, 2012
    69BookWorM69
    I'm sure there's more like Ben Franklin, going back many centuries (apprenticeships for relatives in family businesses). Just can't summon any to mind now...
  • January 9, 2012
    Oreochan
    A hat already? It doesn't have more than three examples yet...
  • January 9, 2012
    nman
    What do you mean? There's Georgia Rule, Secondhand Lions, Suzuka, Earth's Children, and Ben Franklin.
  • January 9, 2012
    Oreochan
    ^ I mean in the draft,. That can be easily fixed if those examples could be added. Adding Suzuka and Ben.
  • January 9, 2012
    AaronHong
    One of the kid NP Cs in World Of Warcraft, I think he's with the tailoring trainer in Stormwind.
  • January 10, 2012
    Chabal2
    Discworld: this is standard practice for dwarfs, who are sent to their already-established relatives in (usually) Anhk-Morpork, learning a trade and sending money home. Others stay in the mines, but there's little connotation of punishment. Carrot Ironfoundersson was sent to join the Watch as he was a human raised by dwarfs.

  • January 10, 2012
    TiggersAreGreat
    Newspaper Comics

    • For Better Or For Worse: The Pattersons have sent Michael, Elizabeth, and April to work on a farm in the Prairie provinces in Canada.
  • January 10, 2012
    ChunkyDaddy
    I think there might be too many Real Life examples to list them all. As far as Real Life is concerned, until the industrial revolution, this was People Sit On Chairs. I do think it's tropeable, but it would be sufficient if you mention that this is Truth In Television
  • January 10, 2012
    Oreochan
    I'll do that.
  • January 10, 2012
    Sackett
    It still happens all the time. Focus more on the narrative effect- it's usually used for a Coming Of Age story, that sort of thing.
  • January 10, 2012
    Oreochan
    Hmm... I try to do something like that. I see it happens in Coming Of Age stories most of the time. What index could this be on?
  • January 10, 2012
    nman
  • January 10, 2012
    Oreochan
    ^ I missed that one. I kind of think there should be a index for tropes for Coming Of Age stories, like this one.
  • January 10, 2012
    nman
    Hmm, well there's the general Plots index for now, and some Coming Of Age might be shoehorned into Time Tropes and Youngsters, I guess.
  • January 10, 2012
    Oreochan
    Yeah, might as well go with that.
  • January 10, 2012
    nman
    Oh, I can't believe I forgot to mention this: You should add somewhere that sometimes the kid is sent from the country to the city (instead of being sent from the city to work on a farm, etc.) in order to go to school, and works for the relative in order to not be a burden. Basically, the Country Mouse version of the trope.
  • January 11, 2012
    Oreochan
    Added. Anything else?
  • January 12, 2012
    judasmartel
    Truth In Television: Although there are more examples of kids being sent off to work for relatives because the family cannot raise any more money, there are cases where rich kids are sent off to the countryside to avert the Rich Bitch trope.
  • January 13, 2012
    nman
    Here's a bump so you can get more hats and finally launch this thing.
  • January 14, 2012
    Prfnoff
    Theatre
    • In the Rodgers and Hart musical Babes in Arms, this is the fate the protagonists are trying to avoid by putting on a show.
  • January 15, 2012
    nitrokitty
    This is the plot of Cold Comfort Farm.
  • January 16, 2012
    SorciaMacNasty
    Literature
    • In 'Chronicles of Prydain' (by Lloyd Alexander):
      • Taran works Craddoc's farm thinking mistakenly that Craddoc is his real father.
      • Eilonwy is sent to the Isle of Mona to learn to be a lady, "working" at being a princess for several years.
  • February 2, 2012
    electronshock
    Anime: Birdy The Mighty: After everyone in her family/household is dead, to causes both related and unrelated to the plot, Sayaka is sent to work on a farm with relatives.
  • February 13, 2012
    NateSpidgewood
  • February 19, 2012
    Sackett
    I think the core is ready for launch. The grammar and sentence structure needs some cleanup. I assume English is not your primary language?

    The meaning is clear enough though, so go ahead and launch it. If you send me a PM after it's launched I'll go through and fix the grammar mistakes. Unless someone else gets to it before me.
  • February 20, 2012
    Oreochan
    English is actually my first language . It's just that my grammar and writing skills are mediocre. Anyway, I fixed some the grammar mistakes but there are probably some I missed.
  • February 20, 2012
    TheLynn
    Not technically sent to work, but on "Gilmore Girls", Jess is sent from New York to live in the tiny town with his uncle, who quickly puts him to work in his diner.
  • February 29, 2012
    Oreochan
    Alright, I'll start cleaning the draft so it will be ready to launch. I'll launch it soon.
  • March 8, 2012
    nman
    Here's a bump, just in case this fell off of your radar.
  • March 10, 2012
    TooBah
    In the 2006 film The Ultimate Gift, one of Jason's first "gifts" is the gift of hard work. He is sent to a ranch in the middle of nowhere, to work for a close friend of his grandfather's, until he understands the value of hard work.
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