Originally Posted by anasmommy
Thanks for the input ladies.
Yesterday we had another run in it went something like this...
"I need you to put the dishes in the dishwasher before you go back on the computer"
"Why do I have to do it? Mia should do it when she gets home from gymnastics"
"I will give your sister another chore when she gets home but I need you to do the dishes so I can make dinner"
(Headshake, mumbling under breath) walks past me and lays on the couch.
"what are you doing?"
"I am resting, I am tired from school"
"It you choose not to do the dishes, you will choose to be in your room for the rest of the evening"
"I don't care"
"I'm really disappointed with your choice and if you choose not to do what you are asked again, some of your privledges will have to disappear."
What am I doing wrong?
I really made a concerted effort to be nice and to be firm.
IMO, you *are* being too nice. You're trying to be friends with him, when it's time to enforce some hard truths about family. In this instance, he totally got out of doing what he didn't want to do, AND he got to stay in his nice comfy room so he didn't have to deal with you.
How about asking him to swap?
"Please put away the dishes"
"I don't wanna"
"Well I don't want to make dinner, but I have to. Life sucks that way. Want to switch? You make food and I'll clean up."
See what happens....
I offered that possibility to DSS and even though he's 10, he took it, because he hates doing the dishes THAT MUCH. He's learning how to cook AND learning that there are things in life that, though they suck, have to be done. Going to work sucks. Homework sucks. Cleaning the house sucks. Paying bills suck. What are you going to do about it? You just do it.
Your family is a cooperative of sorts, bringing together people of different skill set and abilities; you all contribute in one way or another to the proper functioning of the household. You also love each other and try to do nice things for one another. He's got to learn this. If he wants to treat your family like a boarding house where he comes and goes as he pleases, then he can start paying rent. Harsh but realistic.
He doesn't want to do dishes. Whenever he uses a dish and leaves it dirty, stick it on his bed. Don't wash any of his clothing. Don't give him any of the dinners you make. I give it a week or two, and then he'll start contributing.
Originally Posted by anasmommy
I guess maybe he is just testing me. I am going to take him out tonight and talk with him one on one as long as there are no run-ins. I am going to specifically ask him to give me examples of me being disrespectful to him.
Of course he's testing you, especially since his dad is Mr. I'm So Fun, you get to be the nag. He's trying to see how much of an ass he can be before you pop. The whole "disrepect" thing is just the latest catch phrase he learned that makes him feel empowered and gives him the opportunity to grate on your nerves...teens LOVE that!
DSS used to compare our house with his mother's (where he doesn't have to do a thing, and once dinner is done, he can throw his fork down on his plate, stand up, burp, and walk away to go play video games
). We eventually got him to see that although mom's house is fun, it's ALWAYS a free for all, everything is misplaced, lost and late, and no one cares. After a while, he decided he'd much rather live with DH and me, even though we're strict, because his life is more peaceful.
Don't let up; good luck!