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Old 04-06-2013, 05:12 AM   #1 
Esahc
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"But the fish store guy SAID it was okay!"

(bit of a word wall; there's a tl;dr at the bottom if you don't want to read a painfully long ramble about my childhood issues)


Hopefully I'm putting this in the right section...my particular case doesn't/won't involve betta fish, but I figure it must be a common problem, so I threw it up here to see what everyone else has to say. Fair warning, I'm typing this at 4AM with new-tank-induced insomnia (I dreamed that ALL the plants came to life LSoH-style and threw Altair out of the water, at me and there might have been a musical number, I don't even know. I might also have a fever. I'm sorry in advance.)

So, goodnews/badnews time. Good news, my newfound fish mania has potentially prompted my parents to get some fish of their own.
I live at home because hey, free food and no rent, and have overheard their plans to maybe dig a 'koi' (goldfish, they don't know the difference...honestly neither do I...) pond in the back yard (it's a 1-acre lot, we have the room if you have enough time/explosives to get through the lovely texas bedrock.) which is cool, we've had one before in a rental house. The fish surived even.
here's the bad news.

My parents have this problem where everyone on earth is more credible than I am. I have been told, to my face because my family does not do the shy thing, that I don't know anything about anything, over issues that I have been more qualified to deal with for YEARS. (computers mostly, but cats as well, television, luggage location, how to navigate new york city...)
Luckily they haven't physically tried to stop me from buying what my fish needs (Though I do get the 'girl you crazy' look from my mom at least three times a day.) but I've been getting "but the girl at the fish store said your fish is in a little fishie mansion, why are you upgrading the tank? (1.5gal->5gal)" Throughout this whole endeavor.

These are the same people who bought me a 10 gallon fish tank when I was five, stocked it with goldfish, platys and neon tetras, set it up in my room and changed the water when it was too murky green to see the fish.
and then restocked the fish when they died without ever changing their cleaning habits.
Because the fish store people said it only needed cleaning twice a year.

I love my parents, but really?
They're getting on in years(not gonna say how much to avoid offending anyone here) and turning even more stubborn as they go. The internet is not a credible resource, and neither are books because the fish store person said so. Unless what the fish store person says is inconvenient, in which case, it's because Dad's research says so.
I'm pretty sure I could drag a nobel prizewinning marine biologist in front of them with proof and it would still be because the fish store person said so.
I know that people have to have the problem, with Bettas especially, considering all of the urban legends out there about them.


tl;dr: My family is potentially insane and doesn't listen to me about fish care.

So, what do you do to avoid fish abuse when your family decides fish, bettas especialy, are a maintenance-free pet?
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Old 04-06-2013, 08:23 AM   #2 
Minnieservis
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You know, I recently got back into betta keeping and my mother constantly reminds me of how when I was younger we had a betta in a tank with no heater and he lived for two years. After doing lots of research, mainly just reading threads here, I've become much more knowledgable about betta keeping than I was when I was a kid. The best way I've found to handle the, 'well why do they need that? They come in tiny cups' type questions is to say 'ya know I thought the same thing until I did some research'. By relating to other peoples lack of betta knowledge, it seems to make them more desirable to understand what's actually correct care for bettas. Now my mom wants one of her own! She even was pricing heaters and decor the other day :)
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:45 AM   #3 
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This is why you move out and get a place of your own. It makes ignoring them a lot easier, and then you can just appreciate the good stuff.

They will do whatever they are going to do, but at least you can get on with doing what you want without hearing a lot of guff about it.
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Old 04-06-2013, 11:27 AM   #4 
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...Just keep stubbornly going at it?

My parents didn't believe me when I wanted to move my bettas to a 5.5gal. At first they just dug around the house for a 1gal jar. It was actually rescuing my cousin's neglected betta that ended up getting me the tank because I got my aunt and uncle to pay "fish support" I guess you can call it. xD

But I got my dad really excited once I told him I could stock the betta tank with shrimp (hope my bettas don't have a taste for shrimp!). And he got really interested when I started talking about exotic guppies (we also have a guppy tank). Seemed like their main problem is that they like schooling and active fish rather than bettas than actually the tank itself because they kept saying it would be "boring."
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Old 04-06-2013, 11:29 AM   #5 
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As a person who works in a pet store (that sells fish), I can honestly tell your parents DO NOT trust the fish store people. You can tell them I am that girl at the fish store. I can honestly admit, the information I told people before coming here... I probably killed people's fish, in fact I know I must've. I told people they could put 4 females (betta) in a 2.5 g tank. I recommended Betta Fix. I told people to way overfeed their fish. I told people they did not need a heater. I thought I was well trained, by our resident "betta expert". I thought I was sharing great wisdom. But, I was not, and I know now I was not.

I grew up with bettas as well. They always lived in bowls that were unheated and fed flakes (that were not always betta specific). My fish usually lived a long while, but I realize now what I put them through. That is why I fight so hard to give the ones I have now a great life. In memory of my mistakes.

I also live at home. I'm a graduate student and it's just cheaper and well... I like having someone always make sure there is food in the fridge and my laundry is done. My boyfriend and me are looking at houses though right now. I will be 30 in a few years, so I figure I should probably start "growing up", but I don't wanna. I am excited about having more room to rescue fish though. I am going to set up a sanctuary.
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Old 04-06-2013, 12:12 PM   #6 
Esahc
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Like I said, the 'fish guy' is always right...until the advice is inconvenient, then " it'll probably be okay" I'm probably making them sound like horrible people... They're really not, they're just busy, and they don't always understand why I feel the way I do about animals. They're both from "animals belong outside" families, and I don't think they really even count fish as pets.
Luckily my local petsmart fish girl is pretty knowledgeable about bettas. It's the LFS that gives bad info.

I feel you on the not wanting to move out thing; granted, I do my own laundry and cook most of the food, but living rent free is nice, and I'm also in school (I don't blame you at all, graduate programs are hard enough without having to worry about money stuff. I'm just an undergrad and it's hard enough without worrying about money stuff) I would kill to get a job that let me keep going to school and let me afford an apartment too, I'm hitting that point where I really need more space than I can get here, and I'd love to get a bigger community tank or even a saltwater tank, it's just not in the cards right now.
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Old 04-06-2013, 12:13 PM   #7 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esahc View Post
I live at home because hey, free food and no rent,....................

My parents have this problem where everyone on earth is more credible than I am.
hmmm, I wonder why?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Esahc View Post
So, what do you do to avoid fish abuse when your family decides fish, bettas especialy, are a maintenance-free pet?
Get your own life.
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Old 04-06-2013, 12:15 PM   #8 
MattsBettas
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That was really rude ru.
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Old 04-06-2013, 12:15 PM   #9 
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I think this must be Little Leaf who has transported herself into the future 10 years and her parents STILL won't wise up about fish!
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Old 04-06-2013, 12:16 PM   #10 
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That was really rude ru.
You may report me if you wish, just don't PM, m'kay?
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