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I am so very angry with my children.... - Page 2

post #21 of 29

I have thought of some advice, but I have a few caveats about it. I have one child, we live in a city, our house is tiny like a shoebox and he has never tried to do anything as exciting as climbing out of a window. 

 

In fact I'm kind of envious that you have four lively children who are so rambunctious and active. 

 

 

My thought is this. When you live with a group of adults, the space gets messy when there isn't buy-in from the whole group on keeping it nice. If there is a critical mass of uncaring housemates, everyone sinks to the lowest common denominator.  

 

Perhaps one way to address this is to assign the children the task of repairing or cleaning the things they break or mar. That way, they will have an investment in how it looks. For example, the writing on the wall may come off with a few of those magic sponges, but it might take paint. If you get them together, put the question to them, tell them you will bankroll the materials and give practical advice but that it's their project, they might rise to the occasion. Then they might also feel a level of ownership of the niceness of the house. 

 

It also occurs to me that you can share some photos of nice-looking  rooms online or in a magazine. "Could our house look like this?" Sometimes the problem is that they are oblivious to their space.  Enlist them in developing a solution to the problem. 

post #22 of 29

wow 5 acres in the middle of nowhere. how lucky you guys are. of course even i would try to climb out of the windows.

 

now mama i have a question for you. 

 

you have two sets of ages 11 and 13 ; and 7 and 5.

 

are you talking about both groups or one particular group? 

 

are your 11 and 13 year old also writing on the walls and doors in the house? 

 

i have no idea how to introduce caring to the kids. 

 

do you have a farm? do they also have outside duty to do?

post #23 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

wow 5 acres in the middle of nowhere. how lucky you guys are. of course even i would try to climb out of the windows.

now mama i have a question for you. 

you have two sets of ages 11 and 13 ; and 7 and 5.

are you talking about both groups or one particular group? 

are your 11 and 13 year old also writing on the walls and doors in the house? 

i have no idea how to introduce caring to the kids. 

do you have a farm? do they also have outside duty to do?

That's a good point and I would say that my 13 year old dd is not a problem anymore. She is pretty helpful and her energy level has mellowed out. The other 3 are the ones now casuing most of the mess. My 11 year old ds is not writing on walls or things like that, but he is still very high energy and messy.

We don't have a farm, just chickens, a goat ( for weed eating), sometimes a pig and a garden. They don't have any daily jobs outside but if things start getting to messy out side I send them out with a garbage bag to clean up.

I have been being tougher on them the last few days and it has been helping. I just have to keep doing it and not give up in a few days. I have be making them only eat at the table or kitchen bar, before bed last night everyone had to help clean up and we got ds out of bed when we noticed he hadn't finished his job. He also was grumpy about having to help in the first place and mouthed of so I took his computer time away for today and I wrote it down on our message board so I wouldn't forget.

We joke about the fact that we raise feral children. In general we have a very laid back house where we don't have a lot of rules and the kids are given a lot of freedom and I want to keep it that way. I just have to find the balance before I loss my mind.
post #24 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by AngieB View Post


That's a good point and I would say that my 13 year old dd is not a problem anymore. She is pretty helpful and her energy level has mellowed out. The other 3 are the ones now casuing most of the mess. My 11 year old ds is not writing on walls or things like that, but he is still very high energy and messy.
hey that's good news. you dont need to teach caring. it seems perhaps they just need to grow up :)

We don't have a farm, just chickens, a goat ( for weed eating), sometimes a pig and a garden. They don't have any daily jobs outside but if things start getting to messy out side I send them out with a garbage bag to clean up.
hey i call that a farm :) ok (not that i want to tell you what to do) but you need to involve them in chores outside. not just cleaning up. not sure what you actually have them do - but they should be collecting the eggs, tilling the soil, and help harvesting. this is what i miss living in the city. its an important lesson for anyone to have a connection with food.

I have been being tougher on them the last few days and it has been helping. I just have to keep doing it and not give up in a few days. I have be making them only eat at the table or kitchen bar, before bed last night everyone had to help clean up and we got ds out of bed when we noticed he hadn't finished his job. He also was grumpy about having to help in the first place and mouthed of so I took his computer time away for today and I wrote it down on our message board so I wouldn't forget.
nod.gif
We joke about the fact that we raise feral children. In general we have a very laid back house where we don't have a lot of rules and the kids are given a lot of freedom and I want to keep it that way. I just have to find the balance before I loss my mind.

yes i totally agree with you. absolutely. you have the opportunity that many people dont have in their life and absolutely make big on it.

 

i tell you mama while you have them do chores find things that give them a feeling of contribution. for instance (i have no clue how well your kids work together) you and ur dh be outside doing outside work. have the kids all work together to make dinner/lunch. give each one hte task you feel they can handle to do. like a sharp knife not to ur 5 and 7 year old.

 

another thing - chores are NEVER done willingly. so your kids not doing them is v. v. normal. you insisting that they keep up to their agreement is the key. 

 

here is something i do with my dd. i really like something like this because i have never wanted to do a sticker chart. i want her to do it, not because i am the bigger person and so you have to obey me. i want her to do it coz she realizes how much it affects my life if she doesnt. ever since i've been kinda making requests this way life has really gotten easy. instead of telling dd what to do - i make a request explaining why i want her to do it. however if she HAS to do it then i tell her its a command she has to do it (that is rare in our house, usually involves something done urgently). perhaps this is easier done with an only child - i dont know. but i feel v. strongly that they are people too and should be heard and respected. not saying others dont want that too - but in the realm of parenting we can so easily become the police. its so easy to allow power to get to our head (ugh i do it so often its disgusting. thankfully i have a dd who calls me on it every single time)

 

http://www.nycnvc.org/nvcquiz_requests.htm

 

since we've been practising this for so long, dd protests and drags her feet about her chores, and takes her own sweet time but rarely disobeys me. it has been helpful to her that i share how i hate doing certain chores myself. but i enjoy an organized house so i have to do it. it helps her see even mama has unpleasant tasks to do and she does not have a choice. she has to do them.

post #25 of 29

That is really frustrating, I thought you were referring at toddlers. But 13, 11, 7, and 5 they can be discipline in cleanliness already( but not that much for the age 5).

post #26 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by katelove View Post

I would probably go with some fairly serious consequences at this point.
If they're drawing on the walls then all pens, pencils, crayons etc are taken away. If they need them for school work then it gets done under supervision at the dining room table (or wherever suits you best). They could also spend some time washing the marks off the walls.
Dropping food wrapper - no more treat foods which are individually wrapped. Or they have to ask you for them and eat them in a designated place.
Leaving food/plates lying around - food is only eaten at the table, under supervision.
All these restrictions can be lifted on a trial basis after a given period. If they go back to old habits then the restrictions come back.
Destruction of essential things like screens is harder. Some method of paying for the damage, either from their pocket money or by doing extra jobs for you seems reasonable. A period of time where they can't be in their rooms unsupervised except to sleep is something else you could do but it's very labour-intensive for you.


I totally agree with this.  Sit them down, and explain the expectations and consequences, then start taking things away immediately when they cannot respect or properly use them. Whatever item is causing a problem, in whatever manner, is simply GONE until they shape up. 

 

For the window opening, you can buy lock that are super easy to install, and very cheap, that will prevent them from opening the windows. 

 

If your kids end up with no clothes but jeans and white t-shirts, no toys, no craft supplies, no fun snacks, whatever, you are NOT BEING MEAN.  You are teaching them.  Severe problem behaviors take severe measures to fix.

post #27 of 29

The only thing I can think to add is to talk to them about how you are feeling. Not just the consequences of their actions as far as punishment but that they are making you feel sad and frustrated and disappointed. Even a five year old can and should understand that they are making someone upset. Explain to them why it is important to you to have a clean home and then discuss ways you can keep it that way together. I'm sure you will be very pleasantly surprised with how much they care about your feelings. That won't guarantee they will remember to do everything you want all the time but will hopefully start a path of helpfulness and cooperation. 

post #28 of 29

how are things going mama?

 

how are YOU doing?

post #29 of 29
Thread Starter 
Things are better. I made a house rule that all eating must be done at the kitchen table or breakfast bar which is helping and the kids are not whining to much about it. I added a few more chores and most important I've started making them pick up their own stuff a lot more. I even got ds out of bed the other night because he hadn't done something I asked.
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