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Teenage Hygiene

(22 Posts)
Nickyleigh Mon 10-Oct-11 16:49:54

Help!! Anyone got any suggestions or cures for 16 year old girls lack of will to wash? Ladies time in our house is particularly grim as she has no shame in leaving dirty kecks and towels for me to clean up after her this has been going on for some time and am at my wits end with it!

bevelino Mon 10-Oct-11 20:39:34

As a mother of 4 dd's hygiene is given a high priority in our house. I have always emphasised the importance of high standards of hygiene from when they were toddlers and they bathe every day. However they are not perfect and I do drop into conversations every now and then, that if they are untidy no one will want to flat share with them when they are older. Furthermore, if they do not wash they will be smelly and it will put off boys when they are ready to date.

As your dd is 16 I would sit her down and explain in a firm but supportive way that personal cleanliness is non negotiable and that you expect her to be clean and not leave dirty underwear for you to deal with. If you have to nag her so be it, as you will be doing her a favour in the long run.

fluffythevampirestabber Mon 10-Oct-11 20:42:14

I guarantee it will sort itself out. She will get a boyfriend and your house will smell like a hoors parlour.

That will sort the cleanliness, but won't sort the mess. Have a word with her and then have another word. If that doesn't work, make her do her own washing. A couple of weekends without the right exact item of clothing that she has to have right now to wear coz it's dirty on her floor in the laundry basket will sort it.

<<voice of experience with boys>>

Ponders Mon 10-Oct-11 20:44:52

Just tell her that if she leaves stuff like that for you again, it will be returned to her room - repeatedly - for her to deal with herself.

If she wants help or instructions on what to do with it you are happy to show her - once - but after that she's on her own.

Nickyleigh Tue 11-Oct-11 09:39:49

Sad to say have tried talking for the last 4 years it goes in one ear and out of the other. She has a boyfriend and has been with him for nearly a year now, so dont think the getting a boyfriend will change her is going to happen! LOL, She wouldnt care if she didnt have clean clothes she would probably be happy to stay in the same ones all weekend anyway! No point in grounding her or any other sort of punishment and wouldnt feel this appropriate anyway for a 16year old who has a full time job. Help!!

Nickyleigh Tue 11-Oct-11 09:44:10

Sorry, should of probably mentioned this is my stepdaughter, love her as my own though i might add, smelly habits or not!! We have a great relationship in every way and i love her to bits however not loving the having to clean up behind her specially on her time of the month x Own mum tells her she only has to shower every other day (baths are not allowed in their house) so me telling her that showers are essential daily probably falls on her little deaf ears, not her fault i might add

figroll Tue 11-Oct-11 17:06:31

I am shocked actually as my 16 year old spends hours getting ready for school. She washes, makes up, brushes her long luxuriant hair, has antiperspirant and perfume each morning. In fact she stinks, but in a very nice way.

Why don't you leave the dirty knickers in her room for when her friends come round? That would be a nice welcome for them.

Nickyleigh Tue 11-Oct-11 22:16:41

I would but unfortunately she doesn't seem to have any friends so this would not be an option. She see's her boyfriend about once a fortnight also so he never pops round, believe me i have tried everything to no avail, just wonder if have to reside myself to the fact that she is going to always be this way :-(

Theas18 Wed 12-Oct-11 11:56:23

A blunt "you stink I'm afraid you need a bath/shower now and no computer/phone/dinner etc" till it is dome (pick the one she'll notice most, give 30 mins and add the next on- say take phone, then turn of internet then remove PC/TV etc. Minimum levels or personal hygiene are non negotiable.

The dirty clothes lying around- is this just at period time or all the time? Have a chat and find out why- if she just CBA then put a laundry bin where she drops them and get her to pop them in- its a start after all. otherwise I agree if it's a case that this is the straw that breaks the camels back in terms of her just assuming you'll be her maid I'd dump them all in her room (or even bed,,,,) and refuse to give clean till she washes them herself!

bigTillyMint Wed 12-Oct-11 11:58:38

Is this a new problem or has she always been like this?

Nickyleigh Wed 12-Oct-11 16:12:08

She has always been like this, periods have just made it worse. She lies, pretends she has had a bath/shower. When she does go and have a bath i think she just sits on the loo moving the water in the bath around with her hand as you never here her get in or out and usually no sign of wet bath mat or towel either. Dirty kecks scenario in fairness has improved, she has never been bothered about leaving them on her bedroom floor or even in her bed!! Period time is the worse she justs seems to have no interest at all in her personal hygiene. Her brother and stepbro, father and myself all bath frequently. I have treated her to bath bombs etc, i do her hair for her, help her with nails, makeup etc, so think i have exhausted all help i can give as said am at abit of a loss of what to do. Also she doesnt care if you take tv, phone anything like that off of her.

emsy5000 Thu 13-Oct-11 15:54:50

I was a bit like this when I was a teen and even though my mum was great and I got bullied because of it. I was completely unware of the need for what everyone was going on about. even the dirty knickers thing sounds familiar.
Eventually I grew out of it but that didn't happen until I left home so that is no help.
why not try binning all her knickers apart from say 4 pairs and say if she wants fresh ones she will have to wash them as she uses them.

MaureenMLove Thu 13-Oct-11 16:15:26

Leaving soiled clothing around is pretty gross and needs to be addressed, but really, I'd just leave it. She'll learn/change eventually and until then, I don't think it's worth wasting your time or breath on it.

It's tough, I know, I have a 16 yr old dd, who doesn't keep to my standards of cleanliness either, but really, I've got far more pressing things to be concerned about!

She's clearly not bothered and unless she has no friends because she smells, they aren't bothered either! grin

As long as you are confident that in all other areas of her life, she's doing OK, don't worry about it. smile

Nickyleigh Thu 13-Oct-11 17:56:43

Appreciate all comments/advice, to be honest if it was just mess confined to her room i could maybe deal with it/ignore however this month it has escalated to bathroom for all to see, we have cream carpet which she soiled i spoke to her said you need to be careful when you on ladies time explained everyone has accidents etc, did make her clean up but still had to go behind her and do properly myself. This happened again the next day, but had to clean myself as males all in the house, she had accident in her undies which she left floating in the sink in the bathroom on view for everyone. Again i spoke to her said it wouldnt even be so bad if it was on the bathroom mat as opposed to the carpet as i can put that through the washing machine, the next day mess on the mat and to my horror ladies mess left in the bottom of the bath, had a client round as am hairdresser and had specifically asked to let me know when bathroom free so she knew id be going in after her, thankgoodness i had the savvy to check before took someone in their. So this in fairness why am wits end this month with it all as dont see any light at the end of the tunnel with it :-(

emsy5000 Mon 17-Oct-11 08:50:52

Wow that sounds a bit strange. Have you thought about maybe it's a sign of something else that might require counselling. Like a cry for help sort of thing. sad

talkingnonsense Mon 17-Oct-11 09:09:27

When you say ladies mess do you mean tampons/ towels, or blood? If the former do you have a clear place for them to go ( lidded bin). If the latter is she having v heavy periods? She may need a chat to the dr. Only you sound a bit sensitive about discussing it ( this may just be in typing, you might be fine in real life!) and if she is having menstrual problems she might not know how to discuss it.

Bonsoir Mon 17-Oct-11 09:13:11

When my DSS2 stinks/is visibly dirty, I tell him that there will be no food for him until he is properly washed and in clean clothes.

lilolilmanchester Mon 17-Oct-11 09:20:56

Sounds like she either just genuinely doesn't care or this is (consciously or not) is her way of rebelling against what is expected, which is fairly normal, if unpleasant, teenager behaviour. Not making excuses or saying it's right, but understand from having teenagers myself that it is much harder to impose sanctions that have an impact than with younger children, and she's possibly getting some kind of satisfaction out of winding you up. Maybe try having a bucket of water & bio-tex or similar in the bathroom that she can put her dirty knickers in. Not sure it will have the desired impact but perhaps worth a try. Also maybe provide some feminine wipes by the toilet and some deo wipes in her room for quick freshening up. Not ideal, but small steps and hopefully she'll grow out of it.
You sound like a fab step-mum btw.

emsy5000 Fri 21-Oct-11 09:39:52

Was having a think about you problem. And why not show her a print out of this thread. Will show her that your not being unreasonable and maybe be a wake up call to how the world behaves smile

lilolilmanchester Fri 21-Oct-11 10:01:40

emsy, that's a good idea in principle, but might backfire badly for OP as DSD might be mortified that her stepmother is talking about this - even to a load of anonymous strangers???

aliportico Fri 21-Oct-11 12:54:41

I've got a little lidded pedal bin in our bathroom for my teenage daughters in which to put any bloody knickers/washable sanpro/anything else that for any reason they don't really want to put in the general washing bin. It has a little bucket in it which I can take out and chuck everything in the washing machine (without having to touch anything!) to give it a wash through before adding the rest of a hot wash. Works quite well.

Nickyleigh Tue 25-Oct-11 10:56:57

Hi, thanks for everyones suggestions, and thanks lilolilmanchester for the stepmum comment, much appreciated. When i say mess i mean blood on the carpet, sounds bit gross to say thats all, have lidded bin in bathroom and she also has one in her own room, i have provided nappy sacks for towels to be put in, and we also have wipes etc readily available to her in the bathroom. I do wonder if it is cry for help sometimes but frequently tell her she can talk to me about anything, had a chat with her this week see if everything is ok in her little world and think she is feeling a little overwhelmed going straight from school into a fulltime job, and also that her brother is the "favourite" (not in our house but with her mum) We have told her before that she can always come and live with us. She knows her dad and i love her and her brother equally. She has just started to call her dad daddy which i am finding a bit odd, if she had always done this i probably wouldnt of batted an eyelid but at 16 to start calling him this concerns me. We had her boyfriend round to ours on saturday and he commented on the state of her room at her mums house saying there was dirty clothes all stuffed down the side of her bed, this did seem to embarrass her a little i must say.

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