Cant get her to do ANYTHING!!!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by bran155, Jun 20, 2008.

  1. bran155

    bran155 Guest

    How on earth do I get this kid to do anything she is told or anything on her own for that matter??? She is 17 and I still have to nag her to pick up after herself. She will drop her clothes anywhere she sees fit, she makes a mess in every room of our home and doesnt care if we get upset. When I say mess, I mean MESS!!! For instance, my bathroom, the room in the house I hate to go in, she wrecks it, after she puts her make up on her face she wipes her hands on my walls. I have make up stains all over my bathroom walls, she leaves her things all over, hair all in the sink, she lets her pony tails and bobby pins fall down the drain, I have had to unclog my sink numerous times. She wipes hair products all over the place, on my mirror, on the sink and even on my shower curtain. Her dirty clothes are always left on the floor in the bathroom (among other places).

    Her room, oh please, it looks like she was robbed. She has the top floor all too herself. It's an attic room and on the side of her room is my storage area. Wrecked!!!! Her room (when she doesnt live here) is beautiful, nicely decorated for a teenager. She does not take any pride in her surroundings whatsoever, you cant even see the floor, clothes everywhere, garbage, food, all of my dishes and glasses, cigarette butts everywhere and she completely destroyed my storage area, I had it put together nicely, packed in the corner were bags of clothes, winter and summer, separated and packed away for future use. I have my christmas things put away and just some other things I am saving, kids memories and such. She has destroyed that area as well. Stuff everywhere, clothes cover the floor, you can barely get upstairs as her trail leads down the steps. She is a pig!!!!

    Not only is she a lazy slob, but we have to hide our things as she just takes what she wants. She was using my husbands expensive cologne like body spray. We repeatedly told her not too, a million times until finally we had to hide them. She doesnt care who it belongs to or how much it cost, if she wants to use it she will just take it. It drives me nuts!!! I just hate living with her. God forgive me, I do. No matter what we do, she doesnt change. We are doing the tough love thing, she gets nothing from us. I havent bought her anything for summer. She does need clothes, but I dont care, she aint getting them until she starts to do right!!!! She begs me everyday for clothes and sneakers and perfume and everything else under the sun. We tell her, when she cleans up her room and respects the rights of others and learns her boundaries, then she will start getting things again. Its been about 3 months, she must like not getting anything cause she hasnt changed a bit!!! We dont give her any money either. I honestly think that no matter what we do or dont do for her, this will never change. She wants the stuff, yet she isnt doing anything to change her behavior. Oh well she will be one hot and sweaty girl this summer. She isnt used to this because I usually give in and get her what she wants, well not this time. I am much stronger now and it actually feels pretty good to say something and stick to it. Go me!!!! Any suggestions.......

    Get this, last night she asked me to buy her a sidekick cell phone, a $400.00 phone!!! She said she would clean her room for it. I nearly fell over!!! Clean her room for a $400.00 item. Is she nuts? She must have been having one of her delusional moments. :)
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Good for you! Unfortunately, difficult child's NEED to go without so there is SOME motivation for them to comply with treatment and TRY to change. I will never believe there is another way. I only hope she has no car, insurance or access to driving. THAT made my daughter really think. I'd also take her, cell, Ipod, whatever she has until she changes her attitude. If she whines, I'd say, "Get a job and buy it all yourself." My daughter actually did get a least she was being responsible THAT way, and I feel it helped her in the future and was a big reason why she got her act together on her own. It doesn't help to baby these kids.
    You may want to move her to another room. Doesn't sound like your upstairs can survive her :)
    What are her plans for when she turns eighteen?
  3. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    She's not nuts. She's 17! And an immature 17 at that. My daughter was, is and probably always will be a slob. If no towel was handy, the wall would do just fine. Like yours, makeup stains were the wall murals. I had a simple solution -- I simply threw her makeup away (and anything else she left on the bathroom counters). Like you, I refused to buy her stuff -- she wouldn't take care of things I bought, so she had to find a way to get it herself. If those things were left in places other than her room, they were fair game for me to confiscate and do whatever I wanted with them.

    I did give her a chance to pick things up before taking them. I would do a reminder before I went to bed. Anything still out the next day was history.

    I know it is hard to believe, but a lot of the behavior is not deliberate. My daughter could literally walk over something spilled and not see it in her mind. Her feet would register they needed to step wide but her mind could not get the message that this needed to be cleaned up. She would clean it up if I mentioned it but otherwise not. Same went with dropping her things wherever was convenient. It just didn't register that this wasn't appropriate. It's hard to explain but it is part of executive functioning, something many with ADHD lack.

    For my daughter's room, I simply closed the door. About once every two weeks I would warn her I was going to do a room search. Mainly, I was trying to find all the items that smelled -- food leavings, used hygiene items (ugh!!!!), wet towels. I would removed those items, leave the rest of the mess for her. When it got absolutely too much for me, she was grounded until it was clean. She could go to school and work. Otherwise, she was free to sit in her pig sty. The rest of the house was off limits other than to eat meals with me.

    I understand the hating to live with it. It was finally what caused me to tell my daughter she needed to get her own place. I couldn't take the refusal to do chores, etc. I've visited her in her apartment a couple of times. I've managed to stay about 10 minutes -- all I can handle.
  4. Holliewho

    Holliewho New Member

    I feel and hear your frustration. I have the same issues with my difficult child only she is 13. Right now she owes us money from where she took her cell phone and used the texting feature even though she has no plan for that and was specifically told not to.... Yeah over 100$ in texting in ONE month. She wont even work off what she owes us for that. We told her NO WAY she HAS to pay for the overages. We told her that we were taking her savings (which was like 43$) and she would have to work off the rest. She sits in front of the tv all day.
    Which reminds me I need to get off here and wrap up the WII because she is not using it today or any time soon until she finishes paying off the cell phone. :mad:

    Now that summer is here she is being so lazy. My hubby complains about her but wont help with her. I am so ready for school to start back up and we just started break on MONDAY!

    The only reason my difficult child has clothes is because the girl across the street gave her a ton of stuff she has outgrown. I told her I wasnt buying her anything else until school starts. Which is not until September.

    On a side note my Barnes and Nobles didnt have the Parenting the Explosive child so I got email confirmation that its there waiting for me. So I may go pick that up today.
  5. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I agree with simply throwing things away that she leaves out, with warning. The car is also a VERY valuable tool with a teenager, probably the most valuable.

    I saw a radical suggesetion in a book once, of completely stripping a teenager's room of everything but the basics... a bed, a week's worth of clothes. The teenager had to earn things back, even their clothes, through good behavior and compliance with house rules. I can't say I ever had the strength to do it myself, but it's an interesting concept.
  6. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    Is she adopted by any chance because she sounds just like my son! :hammer: Which means that I know EXACTLY what you're going through and also know that any advice given, you'll have to decide if you think it is worth it or will even work. With that said...

    RE: wiping make-up and product on the walls - My first thought is to confiscate all of it. If she can't handle using it right, then she doesn't get it. If she wants to use it, she has to come to you and ask (nicely or at least not really snotty) and is monitored while she uses it. (Same goes with the hair accessories)

    Clothes everywhere - If she leaves it laying in "public" areas (such as the bathroom), it's gone. Period. Maybe give her one small reminder but otherwise, take it. If she's like mine, she's he!! on towels. If possible, keep all towels someplace else (your room) and give her one every few days. Before she gets a fresh one, she has to turn in her dirty one. At least that way you don't have to go hunting for dirty towels in her room.

    Yours and husband's products - Much as I hate doing this myself, lock it up. Literally. I don't keep anything of mine in my bathroom except for my hair dryer. If I leave anything in there my difficult child uses it no matter what it is. (He once used a brand new, FULL bottle of my conditioner to wash his feet.) I keep the daily stuff in a tote and cart it back and forth. When it's not in use, it's locked in my bedroom. (We actually have a deadbolt on our bedroom door because the he has broken in when we were just using the regular door knob locks. We also keep anything else in there that he will take/use if he sees it laying out.)

    As for the other stuff, I wouldn't make a big deal out of her room simply because it's not in public view. If she wants to live like a pig, it's her choice. However, if she does damage to the house (walls, floor, etc), that's something that she will be responsible for. Either by paying for the damage or assisting in the repair. New rules for her room though, no smoking (she IS underage so that can be your reasoning), no dishes/food in her room....nothing in her room that's not hers.

    As for your stuff in the storage area, is this a totally seperate area? Is it something that you can lock? My difficult child is the same way. If something is not locked up, it's fair game to him no matter what it is. Even my clothes which just astounds me. He's 6'2" and a stick while I'm 5'2" and a bit, um, fluffy. But he will wear anything of mine that he decides he likes or thinks he looks "cool" in. The only things he hasn't worn are my bras and undies......I think.

    We've had to change/make a lot of rules in our house because difficult child is such a slob. I quit doing his laundry years ago and it all hasn't been clean since. I don't even let him put his clothes in the hamper in the bathroom because it contaminates everything else so bad that it takes multiple washings to get the funk out. With the exception of deodorant and hair gel, if it's his, it stays in his room. I don't normallly let him eat on the couch anymore because he gets entirely too engrossed in the tv that he makes a horrible mess. Even the spot at the table where he eats looks like a 2 year old eats there.

    I finally got fed up with all of the grossness and took my house back. Nothing of his is allowed in the public areas of the house and if I find stuff, I either toss it or throw it in his room.

    And the phone thing? :rofl: I love how these kids think we'll just give 'em anything they want for absolutely no reason. My standard response to that stuff is "Get a job and buy it yourself" and then just walk away.

    Basically, if she can't respect your home, your rules and you period, then her life should undergo some major changes until she does. You've got a great start but there's much more that can be done.
  7. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I'm so sorry, bran, but I had to chuckle at your post, because I had the same child living here! We finally had to put doors on the bathroom shelf and lock things up, especially after she ran my toothbrush through the poop in the toilet when she got mad at me. There's nail polish on my bathroom walls, because she put her hand up on the wall while taking off her polish. We only have one bathroom, so I didn't have the option of just putting a lock on the door.

    I kept her curtain closed (no door, she tore it off the hinges and threw it at me) except to toss what she left laying around the house on her bed. We didn't have the dishes and spoiled food problem (thank God!) because a mouse got in there, and after that she was really good about not leaving food around. Even though she isn't living here, I still get the calls because "I need clothes, I need gas, I need, I need, I need..." and I remind her that I agreed to get her a new top for Senior pictures, but I'm not buying clothes till school starts. I don't think it's sunk in yet.

    I wish I had an answer for you, because then I'd know what to do as well. Sending hugs and lots of strength. I know what it's like.
  8. Star*

    Star* call 911

    You sound like the little train that could going up the hill - I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.

    The problem that you are facing is one a lot of us here have faced. I have a boy - he did similar things. I was NOT properly prepared to not LIVE in my own house while making him obey our rules. Here's what I mean about prepared.

    See I too, did the "If you don't pick up after yourself I will throw any and EVERY thing away that I have to pick up." Now while this SOUNDS reasonable to you, a difficult child teen will think "I have eminent domain, my stuff is my stuff, if you throw away my stuff, I will throw away YOUR stuff." (my stuff being - collectables, etc.) but we dont' think of preparing our house to look like a poor end of town group home -

    So in preparation of "I'm sick of your mess, and throwing stuff out." Here are a few tips.

    Box up anything of value you treasure - Box, up anything that is glass, including pictures on the wall. They will be thrown away or broken for spite.

    Get a locking gas cap - yup - you throw out my stuff I dump sugar in your gas can - HOW is that for expensive Mom?

    Get a basket for you and for husband - ALL and I mean ALL of your bathroom supplies go in with you at shower and go OUT with you at showers end. NOTHING is left in the bathroom.

    Lock up all your towels - THIS was a BRAINCHILD of DF - Teens are notoriously dirty pigs, and will use clean towels for every breath if possible - Gather all your towels, wash, dry, fold and HIDE in your room. Teen gets 1 towel a week. You will NOT belive the time you save yourself - ALSO your dirty towels? Locked up - a teen will use YOUR used towels instead of finding and hanging to dry HER towel.

    LOCKS - ON EVERY DOOR - I can not stress this enough. EVERY DOOR - and you and DF have the keys. The keys stay on a springy thing on your wrist at all times. Bathroom doesn't get locked - there is nothing in there.

    Your purse - LOCKED UP.

    Then you get a laundry basket - and you set your daughter /teen down and say "Here is how it's going to be - WHEN I find things in MY house - that are YOURs I will be throwing them into this basket for the first week ONLY and placing the basket ON YOUR BED. If I find after 1 week that you can't keep your stuff in YOUR room then on XX date I will begin throwing your stuff away. (teens at this point will start to look around for YOUR stuff which is NOW cleverly hidden, and packed up) TRUST ME.

    Then on XX date that you decided upon and signed a contract over - you tell her that ON THIS DATE - I am giving you 2 weeks from today - to clean that room to a useable fashion. Not MY perfect - but useable. IF BY XX date 2 weeks from now it is NOT? THEN I WILL be bringing in garbage bags and WE WILL throw stuff out and at that point you WILL NOT be invited to "help Clean" IT WILL BE GOING TO THE DUMP.

    -Then THROW IT OUT. Tell her if it get to that point that there will be NO NONE NADA purchasing of anything for her new school year. NOT ONE SOCK. and she will be left with what YOU think she NEEDS to survive on - and then reinforce that this is HER CHOICE - if SHE CHOOSES TO NOT make an effort from that point on - she wont' HAVE anything for you to throw out. NOTHING. IT WILL BE A FULL RILEY - and a bed, sheet, blanket, pillow, and 4 walls - And the things of value that are hers will also be locked up and as she helps AROUND the house with her daily chorse (3 chores is not unreasonable for a 17 year old) she can EARN her stuff back.

    The other option to not having ulcers would be to SHUT her door and let her live in squallor behind the door - but anything outside that door is fair game for the trash.

    I have had over the years to pull 3 Fulll Riley's on Dude's room. And we cleaned it ALL out - he came home to a bed, and 4 walls. NOTHING else. He was given a choice - he chose NOT to comply. Our rules were clear. His choices were clear.

    When he chose NOT to do a single chore - we gave him a move out date. He didn't think we were serious. When the State called him the night before he went to the group home he was in shock. I told him - "WE can not continue to live like this - I could deal with some mess, and some chores, but you don't want to pitch in, you dont' want to take care of your own stuff, and you are certainly NOT taking care of my stuff and I didnt' raise you to be like this." He actually agreed. The odd thing was when he got to the group home despite the caseworker telling us it was nice? It was NOT. It was health dept. nasty - and since living there with bugs, filth and stink, no food and no supervision? He's been good about his own room at the fosters.

    Good luck -
  9. bran155

    bran155 Guest

    Thank you for all of your input and especially making me laugh. lol lol Smart ideas given to me with a little chuckle!! I have to say I laughed out loud reading everyone of the responses, so thank you for that. I will take your suggestions and put some of them to use. She wont be happy, so If I end up with a black eye I'll let you know. Sounds funny but I am dead serious.

    Thanks again,
    Shawna :)
  10. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    Black eye, huh? Ok then. Before you do a SINGLE thing....take pictures. Take pictures of your bathroom walls, her room, anywhere in the house where her presence has been "marked". THEN you begin with your updates and new rules. If/when she delivers on the black eye (or any other type of violence) CALL THE POLICE. When she gives them the inevitable sob story of how mean and abusive you are, whip out your pictures and explain the new rules. (heck, put them in writing and have her sign them for that matter. and make LOTS of copies of them one they are signed and make sure you put that violence is NOT acceptable in the rules)