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To have taken away all the toys and gadgets and be upset with my children?

(56 Posts)
DinosaursOnASpaceship Sun 04-Nov-12 15:06:10

They think I have thrown them all away but they are hidden in the wardrobe until I feel like giving them back. Including the power cords for their tv, ds and laptop.

They are 10 and 8 and I have been asking them for literally weeks to tidy the pit that is their bedroom. It was discusting. Wrappers and empty mugs everywhere, clothes thrown all over the place, discarded magazines and bits of playmobil and Lego everywhere. They couldn't play with anything as the parts were all over the place. Expensive toy sets that were getting trodden on and lost because they are too lazy to put them away.

Everytime I sent them to tidy up they would argue, fight, come downstairs telling tales and crying. Nothing has gotten done in the weeks that I've been telling them to get it sorted.

I've got an inspection from my landlady at some point so it needed doing. And today I lost my temper after an hour of them coming up and down crying and whining and doing nothing.

So I went up with black bags and sorted 5 bags of rubbish, a mountain of washing and hid all the toys. I left them downstairs with no tv on as I didn't see why I should be doing the hard work whilst they relaxed in front of cbbc.

And I've told them that they should be ashamed of themselves for letting their heavily pregnant mum, with broken fingers, crawl around on their floor because they didn't care enough about it to do it themselves blush

But it's how I feel. I'm a single parent to them, a toddler, nearly 7 months pregnant, I've broken three fingers on one hand and am saving everything I can to give them a decent Christmas on my own. I do all the cooking, the cleaning, the washing, I make sure I drag myself to the supermarket every week so they can eat, I wash up, I iron their school clothes and I do nice things like movie and pizza nights, Halloween parties and take them to play pool.

They have laptops, virgin media in their bedroom, games consoles, toys everywhere, and I am sick of being the mug that is exhausted by 7pm everyday.

I am irrationally angry - angrier than I should be over a bedroom. I have just had enough.

(I have left books and colouring stuff in their room)

Imperial Sun 04-Nov-12 15:11:57

I applaud you!

FermezLaBouche Sun 04-Nov-12 15:14:08

I think you've done totally the right thing. I would also put a ban on food and drinks in the bedrooms if they can't take their rubbish downstairs.
Hope your fingers heal soon!

PrincessSymbian Sun 04-Nov-12 15:14:42

Sounds like they need to be taught how to tidy, with my dd, I'd sit on her bed and point at the area of room she needed to start with and would give her stage by stage instructions.
Your ten year old needs to start having chores on a regular basis.
Your not unreasonable to be angry and fed up but they probably do need some teaching on how to do things. Make them earn the toys back by keeping their bedroom tidy/ doing jobs around the house.

Teabagtights Sun 04-Nov-12 15:15:25

If li is that hard why are you having another kid. If you kept on top of it on a Ely basis their rooms wouldn't get that bad. I worked full time had two kids house always spotless. Put a bin in their rooms and tell them to use it, go in every morning and tell them to put clothes in the washing basket, pick up cups and plates, shake duvets and make the beds. Isn't hard.

DoingTheBestICan Sun 04-Nov-12 15:15:48

It might do them good to not have so many gadgets and toys for a while.

BratinghamPalace Sun 04-Nov-12 15:16:13

Good on you! Break it down for the.ists of jobs ect. And make them save up for stuff. Good luck

AgentZigzag Sun 04-Nov-12 15:17:11

YANBU to be at the end of your tether, not only with the room, but being pregnant and having broken fingers too (you poor thing, how did you manage that??).

If you've not explicitly said you've chucked them, I'd say they can earn them back and tie it in with them keeping the room in some sort of order.

Sending them both up at the same time doesn't sound to be going too well, could you give them each time slots for getting something done? Like one doing 15 mins before the other one goes up?

Or you could give each one a specific task, it can be difficult to know where to start if it's got to shit-tip levels - even for an adult.

I feel for you though, we're having similar with 11 YO DD and it is really depressing even going past her bedroom door because you know what's on the other side.

amillionyears Sun 04-Nov-12 15:18:08

Well done.
10 and 8 is more than old enough for them to be giving you a hand.

mysteryfairy Sun 04-Nov-12 15:18:49

I think it can be very hard when something is a real tip to clear it. It sounds like it had got so bad it was over facing them and I think YABU to think you can leave two such young children to get on with it. Ideally you should have helped them tidy before it got so bad. I bet if you had been in there saying x you pick up all the wrappers into this bag, y take all the pots down, x collect all the playmobil here etc etc they would have managed it.

libelulle Sun 04-Nov-12 15:18:57

Teabaglights, have a medal biscuit. OP, this'll be me in 5 years' time - I already struggle to get my 4 and 2 year old to do any clearing up and so far it's just easier to do it myself. I'm making a rod for my own back. Go for it - I salute you!

fuzzpig Sun 04-Nov-12 15:23:37

I also salute you.

Now you need to make the most of this - do NOT let them build it up so badly again. New rules in place - agree with no food in rooms etc. I think they are old enough to help you more with general tasks too.

Lollyheart Sun 04-Nov-12 15:25:28

Teabaglights angry do you know her life story no you don't!!!!

Good for op, I think you've done the right thing. Let them earn their toys back.

Lollyheart Sun 04-Nov-12 15:27:17

Teabagtights even!

ppeatfruit Sun 04-Nov-12 15:27:42

sad You are angry about your situation as well of course I'm sorry about yr hand.

Have you tried discussing the problem rationally with them and doing it with them? It takes skill to clear up properly;putting labels on storage drawers etc. is helpful. Being moaned at is horrible for adults as well as DCs.

DCs can have TOO many posessions IMO it becomes easy for them to take them for granted.
I used to make my DS save up his pocket and birthday money for any new consoles etc.

AgentZigzag Sun 04-Nov-12 15:30:54

<hollow laugh> at getting new rules in place, starting as you mean to go on, keeping on top of it, teaching them how to tidy shouting, threatening, following through on threats sad

akaemmafrost Sun 04-Nov-12 15:32:43

I don't think you are being irrational AT ALL! I know well that utter fury when confronted with a disgusting messy room and you know you've a good hour of cleaning in front of you. I'd be tempted to hang onto that stuff for a few days myself.

akaemmafrost Sun 04-Nov-12 15:33:22

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DinosaursOnASpaceship Sun 04-Nov-12 15:35:44

They know how to tidy as they never used to be this bad, but lately (ds1 especially) seems to want to challenge me every step of the way. It's like some bizarre battle of wills which ends up with him stomping off up the stairs like a full on teenager. (I am only 5/6 months post break up with exp though so think he is finding his feet again)

I tried sending them in shifts but one would assume the other had done less and compete to do even less on his turn.

The room was so bad because on the first occassion they were sent up, ds1 decided to start by emptying all the storage boxes into the middle of the room to sort them into categories - he used to have all the drawers labelled and was very particular but lost his way with it, but he tipped it into the rubbish and clothes, which made it 10 times worse.

But, that was weeks ago and no effort has been made since. I've tried offering rewards, bribes, threats, sitting there supervising whilst trying to keep ds3 from eating playmobil, and today just snapped.

I've told them I've taken the toys away, rather than thrown them away. So the earning them back is a good possibility.

I've left them up there with the vacuum and a damp cloth to finish the room off - but I can hear them jumping around and I give it 10 minutes before one of them is crying.

(Managed to fall through a glass door on Friday whilst breaking into my own house and broke my fingers - long story!)

TeaBagTights - I'm having another baby because my future telling crystal ball failed me and didn't see exp and I splitting up leaving me a single mother. Huge round of applause though for working full time and having a tidy house! I am so impressed and bow down to your superiority. Ps. I am on benefits too, quick call the daily mail!

IvorHughJackolantern Sun 04-Nov-12 15:38:56

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DinosaursOnASpaceship Sun 04-Nov-12 15:38:59

After taking all the toys and gadgets away, they are having a fantastic time playing with a cardboard box. I came downstairs so they wouldn't see me laughing.

SuePurblybilt Sun 04-Nov-12 15:40:00

teabag, you sound like a right bundle of joy. Let me guess, you'll always have a proper dinner on for the menz and would give your parents more than soup, right?
You know, I always thought that 'boring women have spotless homes' thing was just an untrue cliche until now.

KurriKurri Sun 04-Nov-12 15:42:12

I think if it's got to a really bad state they probably don't know where to start with the tidying (not excusing them at all, - I thnk you are right to be ticked off with them).

If they are constantly fighting, could you split them up, and give them specific tasks. Arm child A with several boxes and say 'you put all the playmo in that box, all the lego in that one and bring down the dirty cups and washing. Child B on second shift puts all the books away, and the cars or whatever and empties the rubbish bins. Something like that. Break the task down and keep them apart - divide and rule grin

Then once it's tidy, have lists of daily tasks they have to do (to earn pocket money, gadget time, TV time or whatever), so that before they go to bed each day they tidy, then it doesn't get out of control.

AgentZigzag Sun 04-Nov-12 15:42:41

Tbh, I don't think there's any one answer, or any easy answers, and I'd be a bit worried about a child whose bedroom was completely tidy all the time.

You have to accept to some degree that it's going to get messy (although that doesn't help with your LL coming round), and it's them making an effort which is the important thing.

LindyHemming Sun 04-Nov-12 15:45:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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