Messy rooms...again?

mrsmaddogApril 25, 2008

Sorry if this has been a recent subject.

DD11 and DH (her SF) cannot come to a common ground about her messy room. It is the ONLY major issue for him. I remember being her age, and I remember it being a huge problem for my Dad.

My position is: no food, clear the floor, and please keep clean and dirty clothes separated.I hate rewashing clean clothes! She has the best room in our house, and the most storage space. I also must constantly ask DD to keep her belongings in her room. I get tired of her stuff being in every other room. One or two items, no problem. I am talking 20 or more things, big and small, here, there and everywhere.

I have spent hours (twice) "helping" her clean her room. It is a big chore, and I am NOT going to do it again.She trashed it within days. When she was little, I would supervise and help organize, so she KNOWS what to do.

I feel it has become a battle of wills and DD is being passive-aggressive. I also feel that DH has forgotten how HIS room looked when he was a kid and a teen.(Um, also when he was a bachelor, not too long ago!His excuse was being too busy!)

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pumpkinmom

When I was a teen my room was also messy. Once I got my own place however, and for whatever reason, I became my mom and now NEED things to be in their place. I say if it is kept WITHIN REASON by some sort of compermise buck-up and deal till shes gone. You know what they say choose your battles. If this is the worst of your problems with her just be happy it's not drugs/alcohol/eating disorder!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2008 at 7:27PM
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mom2emall

I know that some people are okay with messy rooms. I am not. 2 of my kids have asthma, so dust and stuff triggers attacks. And I feel that if they can keep their rooms clean so can the other two, who are older than them.

We do keep toys in a playroom so I think that helps as well. I have the kids spend about 10 minutes a day straightening their rooms, so they really don't get too messy. The playroom does get messy and I do end up in there about once a month cleaning and organizing.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 12:20AM
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lindac

Close the door and forget about it....and forbid your husband to go in there. Once a day walk around the house with a plastic grocery bag and pick up all hr stuff and toss it in there.
It's not your problem nor your husband's....it's her problem so don't take it on...leave it alone. A clean room doesn't make her a better person anymore than a messy one makes her a bum on the street.
The smartest most creative people I know have messy desks and perhaps messy bedrooms too.
Inforce the no food in there rule, and wash only what is brought to you or put into the laundry room, put her clean clothes just inside her door or on the bed, and walk out...
Oh and I wouldn't change her sheets either, I would aks for the sheets from her bed and hand her a pile of clean ones.
As has been said, pick your battles.
Linda C

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 10:04AM
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forms

Sometimes the problem is too much stuff, too many clothes, too many knickknacks, too many books. The week before Xmas and the first week of summer vacation we make the kids clean out their rooms PERFECTLY with heavy encouragement to throw out stuff. And if grandma comes , they have to do the heavy duty cleaning thing too.

Other than that I only require normal cleaning at the first of the month--they don't get their allowance until they do it. Quite often they don't end up with the allowance in their hot little hands until the third week or so of the month. I don't nag; sooner or later the need for cash compells them to clean.

But you are right. Chaos retakes the room within hours of it being cleaned. I ignore it.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 1:00PM
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mrsmaddog

Thanks everyone! I guess the next time DH complains to ME about DD's room, I am going to tell him to go open "his" garage door! I know it isn't the same, but I feel it is hypocritical.
I have a few ideas, and I will let you know if they work!

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 2:06PM
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erict

If you're still here, I have another tip.

People are more likely to clean and organize things if it's something *they* feel they need to do.

One of the consequences of a disheveled room is that it makes it difficult to find something. Like a teen's car keys. Wallet. Or cell phone.

It's mean, but it worked REAL fast for my teenage years - the inability to find my wallet causes more frantic organizing than all the imploring of parents over a month.

When I noticed that my cell phone kept moving from my nightstand to a position underneath a random object on my floor, my floor became clean.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 5:23PM
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popi_gw

Excellent advice Erict !

Another suggestionwshich might instigate a frenzy of taking her objects back to her room is to insist it is done before, TV, computer, trip to the shops etc...something she really wants to do. She just needs re-training.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 8:16PM
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khandi

Re washing clean clothes - I remember my mom telling me the same thing about hating to wash clean clothes.

My DD has anxiety and so procrastination is a factor. She has to clean her room every Saturday (clean clothes put away, dirty clothes in the laundry, everything dusted, room vaccumed, etc.). Two weekends in a row now it took her ALL day to clean it, but didn't have time to vaccum or dust everything. DH was getting mad and DD said it didn't bother her to take all day cuz it gave her something to do.

Now, on the 3rd weekend, I told her "I want your room dusted and vaccumed, and you have 2 hours to do it. No ifs, ands, or buts! Enough is enough!". It was done. On Sunday afternoon she said "Wow! This is the best Sunday I've had in a long time. I have no homework and my room is clean." LOL I told her that's why it shouldn't take her all day to clean. Just get it done and over with and then the rest of the weekend is yours.

DH won't allow her to go to the movies with friends or sleep at a friend's place unless her room is picked up (no clothes laying around, bed made, things in order). Funny that it only takes 20 minutes then to do it!! LOL

When I was young, I had to clean my room every Saturday morning by 11 am. No later! Sometimes I would clean it Friday night if I wanted or had to go somewhere early Saturday morning. I had to do my own spring cleaning in my room too.

My mother also taught me how to sort laundry at 13 and how to wash it. In those days, we didn't have automatic washing machines like today. You washed the clothes on one side of the machine and then put it in the spinner. After all the clothes was washed and spinned, you changed your water and rinsed and spinned all the clothes. Then I had to hang it outside on the clothes line. My daughter's been doing laundry since 13 too! I won't allow DH to wash clothes cuz he's color blind and I don't want him to ruin the clothes LOL

Washing the floor - on hands and knees, no mop - I wouldn't wash around the bottom of the toilet and such, so my mom ended up doing it herself. Well, I did this every time knowing my mom would finish it up. My mom then caught on and would go around and inspect my cleaning and would make ME redo it properly. So then I would automatically do it right the first time cuz I knew then that she'd make me redo it anyways.

In my mid-20s when I was living on my own with my best friend as my roommate, I seen how important it is to learn how clean a house. My friend never had to do chores; therefore, she didn't know how to clean at all! I remember calling my mother on the phone thanking her for teaching me how to clean a house, although at the time I hated it! LOL

At 11 years old, I wouldn't expect a TOTALLY clean room all the time. But I would insist a cleaning every week (clothes picked up, sheets changed, toys picked up). My SIL has 5 kids and I remember her boys (4 of them) always leaving dirty clothes all over their bedroom. She refused to wash clothes that were NOT in the laundry room. When the kids ran out of clean clothes to wear, they started putting their clothes in the laundry! LOL However, if the clothes were not in the laundry room by "laundry day", too bad. Your clothes didn't get washed!

IMO, kids should learn responsibility of doing household chores early enough with a consistent routine. It's hard at first, but after awhile it's almost routine without having to say a word. With my DD, the only thing that we have to keep nagging about is cleaning her room. We have no problem with dishes, sweeping the floor, or laundry.

DH tells her that if she doesn't do her part, because we are a FAMILY, she will have a hard time if she ever gets roommates. Nobody likes living with a slob!

    Bookmark   April 27, 2008 at 2:09PM
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