My Children have no respect for anything(13 Posts)
I've got 3 DC: DD1 aged 10, DS aged 6, and DD2 aged 4. We live in a small 2 bed flat, however storage is not a problem and I have managed to whittle stuff down so that everything has a home.
I work full time during term time, so as far as I'm concerned, weekends should be time spent doing things together as a family. Unfortunately DH has to work weekends so most of the house/child stuff comes down to me which I don't mind as I accept that's the way things need to be for us to survive.
My main problem is that my kids seem to have no respect for anything and would be quite happy to live amongst junk on the floor and covering every surface. They continually ignore my requests to help with household jobs and pull faces and make noises. I end up shouting, they carry on dumping their stuff wherever they want.
I've tried rotas for things, I've tried bagging their stuff up and "throwing it away" with the option to earn things back when they begin to help and look after things. I've threatened to clear out their bedroom... I feel like I've tried everything. I've given them praise when they have done something I've asked (without having to ask 100 times!), I've given them treats and rewards so it's not all negative.
I feel like their personal servant and I've really had enough of it. I'm on half term with them now and would love to be able to go out and do things with them, but I don't see why I should spend time and money doing things with them when they can't be bothered to help around the house. I'm not even asking them to do much, just put whatever they are playing with/using back where it lives before getting something else out, not leaving their dirty washing all over the living room floor or putting their shoes away on the shoe rack.
Please, if you have any strategies you could suggest for changing things, I would be really grateful!
What are they doing instead of clearing up?
Stick to one technique for at least 3 months before having a break down in front of them.
Really really really stick to your guns.
Say no to going out
Say no to having fun
Say yes to home work
Say yes to doing helpful things (cleaning cooking etc)
You can do it
firstly, I'm not pretending to know what I'm talking about! But I read your post and it struck me what I would do in your position.
I'd clear their room of their possessions and I would give them to the local charity shop. If they want to go and buy stuff back that's up to them (or earn them back through doing jobs for you) and if their stuff has been bought by others, then that's tough luck.
Teach them that you are not a walkover, that you don't make empty promises, and that you are not scared to do it again if need be.
It might seem drastic and a waste of the money that was spent on the goods, but by god would it teach them a thing or two. Respect for you being top of the list.
Anyway, not sure if it's a really bad idea but reckon it's something I would seriously consider in your shoes.
I do the broken record thing with my DS... Cant say I never get to the point of shouting .. in fact I have on more than one occasion said shall I just shout at you instead of asking you to do something.
Something I did for DS over summer holidays was pocket money. It was only £1 and I took 10p off for not following certain rules ( none were about tidying up) He is 7 and I have to say it surprised me how much he had control and behaved differently rather than loose 10p
I have to say I find the removal of stuff pointless , however a trip out or doing an activity we have planned is amazing.
I find cleaning up best to do it in the morning before we do any fun acitivites.
I would get the book 123 magic or whatever its called. It deals with getting them motivated for stuff like tidying up. I also found that requests for help got me a stroppy child and these days they just end up in time out if they mouth off and then still have to do the tidying.
I don't think you're ever going to find a combination of words that gets them to want to do what you're asking so you will always be driving the tidying but I think you can get to a point where they're contributing and its not too stressful.
They do it because they get away with it. At some level - you give in and let it continue.
Kids do not hear 'nagging'
You have to tell them clearly what you expect and what the consequences are if they do not do as you are asking. Then you have to make sure you follow through with any consequence without any further discussion.
To turn it around will take lots of time and effort - but they won't change unless you do.
I know what OP means. My 2 have little respect. But I just insist. and I won't tolerate them doing it begrudgingly. I get ds2 to wipe the kitchen floor. I get them to do lots of things actually.
I get them to do it , as a race. when it really looks like a bomb has hit. quick, quick, bet I'm quicker than you..... works occasionally. I know it sounds really babyish but sometimes its all that works.
I hate how spoilt my kids are, how spoilt all kids are, and how little respect they all seem to have.
We had this with DS my eldest at 12. I didn't shout it get cross. I stopped cooking for him, washing his clothes and tidying up after him. I let them make his own tea and clear his own dishes which he hated. He had to decide between working together or providing for himself. After two days he gave in.
Don't take no for an answer and make sure the same jobs are completed every day to get kids into a routine.
12 year old - unload and load dishwasher, sweep floor
8 year old - sort laundry and take to rooms, wipe table after eating
4 year old - help siblings and myself.
You can also ask them to put 10/15 out of place objects back in the correct place. Make it a race or game.
You can also have a tidying/cleaning half hour where you put the timer on and everyone rushes around to loud music doing their jobs.
If they want the telly on say 'yes of corse you can have it on after you have tidied up xx and xx' then sit next to the telly waiting for them to do their jobs and refusing to let them switch it on.
Your techniques won't work for all of the ages - there's a range.
Everything needs a place so you can tell them where to put things. Keep telling them. Have set times for tidying built into the routine e.g. before dinner, before bed etc. Give them spaces to have their mess in which they then clear. E.g. rugs for Lego, a table for crafts etc.
Teaching children responsibility should start really early. It is not that difficult - From toddler age you get them to put things away after themselves and to help clear any mess they make. It becomes automatic if you ALWAYS make them do this,..consequences that nothing else is allowed until it is done.
Problem is, most of us start off clearing up after toddlers, because they are 'just babies' - We carry on for too long and then suddenly wonder why our then older children don't magically realise they should be doing it themselves.
If YOU have always done everything for them - why would they expect anything less?
I wouldn't make it into a game for any child over the age of 5!
I think the trouble is you are not following through. You talk about "throwing it away" meaning you don't really you just threaten to. I know two ladies, sisters, who have six very well behaved children EACH. They have thrown away ipads before and the children on not getting another one, unless they save up and buy one themselves. It is the following through which is the important part - give your children a warning about what will happen, but you must FOLLOW IT THROUGH.
Empty threats are the worst, they make you seem weak. If you don't have the stomach for throwing stuff out then don't threaten it - threaten something that you can follow through on, such as confiscating anythign you have to pick up off the floor for the week.
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