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#1 of 16 Old 04-26-2005, 04:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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OMG, the preteen drama, attitude and backtalk is just driving me insane! I cannot stand the eye rolling, the obstinance.....

This is starting so early! It's up and down!

What do you all do with this sort of thing?

Also, do your preteens do chores? How do you get them to participate in household chores without hearing that whine "I'M BORED!!!"??

Do you give your preteens an allowance?

Do you make them keep your room clean?

Help! My dd will be 11 in July and I'm dying. I just have little patience for dealing with some of her attitudes. One minute she's screaming at us, then next minute she wants to cuddle in our bed.

Is this how it's going to be for the next few years??
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#2 of 16 Old 04-27-2005, 03:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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am I the only one that feels like this? help!
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#3 of 16 Old 04-27-2005, 08:36 AM
 
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My dd has always been pretty dramatic, so that's nothing new for us. :LOL There is plenty of eye-rolling around here too--and it doesn't take much:

Me: I think your hamster cage is in need of cleaning.

DD: "UGH!!!!!" (Eyes rolling, feet stomping) "Like I have nothing better to do!."

Mostly, I just let it go. I figure it's the age. Sometimes, I'll point out that I didn't order her to do it, nor did I insist that she jump up immediately, etc. Other times, I'll pretend to be her and say ultra cheerfully, "Oh, okay Mom, thanks for the reminder." which usually makes her laugh. Pointing it out to her this way is a whole lot better than me getting angry or hurt about the way she's speaking. Usually it gets an apology from her, and sometimes an explanation, but not always.

I'm confident that she knows how to talk to people politely, because usually she does, so I'm not concerned that it's always going to be this way.

Sometimes, I can't help but smile because I sure rememeber being like that myself!

As to chores, they don't have assigned chores, but they do do things around the house. Sometimes she just notices the laundry needs to be folded and does it, other times I'll ask her to do something. Asking for things to be done right away never works, (and I've realized *I* wouldn't like to be asked that way either) so, for instance, if I've asked her to unload the dishwasher, I might also say, "Let me know when you're done so I can start dinner." This way, she knows I'm waiting on her.

My older two don't get allowances. They have paper routes and usually have more money than I do in my pocket.

I don't make her keep her room clean. My feeling is that it's her room and her responsibility. It used to get really bad, but she's lately decided to keep it nicer.

My son never went through this eye-rolling stage so I don't know how long it'll last, but I do most of my eye-rolling in private now, so I guess we won't have to see our dd's doing it forever.

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#4 of 16 Old 04-27-2005, 09:05 AM
 
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Oh yes, isn't eleven a *fun* age?!?! My daughter has the eye rolling foot stomping, and muttering under her breath thing down pat. Oh, does anyone else deal with the "I look like I'm looking at you while you talk to me, but actually I'm looking right through you and not paying the least little bit of attention to what you're saying" thing going on?

My kids don't get an allowance. I'm a single SAHM - I barely have money to pay the bills, let alone pay them!

My 11 year olds chores 1. Keep her room from becoming a disaster area. I won't call it clean, but dirty laundry must be dealt with, the floors have to be semi-showing, etc. She's sharing her room with my friend's little boy (I'm keeping him while she is deployed for 18 months) - so I don't bug her about her room too much because she is giving up a lot of privacy right now. 2. She helps me out with the little ones after dinner while I clean up the kitchen, do dishes, pack lunches, etc. - if it's nice, she takes the whole gang outside, if not they can watch some TV or play upstairs. This is really a sanity thing for me. I'm not asking her to baby-sit, and it's not like they need watched, she's playing right along with them, just kind of keeping things under control. 3. She is in charge of gathering the garbage from the bathrooms and her room twice a week. and 4. She gives her baby sister a bath every few days. She climbs right in the tub with the baby, they play for a while, then she washes her and I help rinse her hair. I hesitate to call this a "chore" though, because she begged me to let her do it! The other day the baby needed a bath desperately (she's been playing outside) and her sister was at school, and she cried the whole time she was in there "Sissy! Siiiissssyyyyy!!!!"

This summer I will add on to the chore list a little bit.

All of the kids have chores here though - everyone is in charge of putting their own clothes in the hamper, everyone is in charge of carrying over their own dishes, everyone is in charge of putting away their own shes/coats/backpacks, everyone is in charge of helping to keep the common areas cleaned up. To me, it's all part of being a member of the family...
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#5 of 16 Old 04-27-2005, 10:59 AM
 
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I thought of this in the shower, and had to pop back on here to ask,

Even though there's drama, don't you find that their good moods go in the extreme as well? I mean, there are times when dd is ultra-helpful or responsible and she seems so grown-up---more like a sister than a dd. We recently went clothes shopping together and it was easy to forget that she is only 10. The times when she's trying to sit on my lap or joking around or having an interesting conversation sort of balance out the eye-rolling/foot-stomping times, yk? (Except maybe for when I'm pms-ing. My biggest fear is that she and I will be on the same schedule! :LOL

Anyway, I'm assuming it'll all balance out after puberty.

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#6 of 16 Old 04-27-2005, 11:00 AM
 
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It seemed like both of my older ones hit that magic number of 9 and we all went you know where in a handbasket. :LOL

DD is almost 12 now, and she's actually getting better *whispered so I don't jinx that*. Problem is DS is almost 10, and he's hit that age and whines about how everyone makes him do everything, noone listens to him, noone loves him, blahblahblah...

They have chores, they have allowances (tied to chores). Things that I used to do, dishes/garbage/bathroom...they wanted extra spending money, so they have to earn it (I know this is a hot topic, but this is our view on it).

I don't necessarily make them keep their room spotless. I do make them shut the door so I don't have to look at it though. Once in awhile, I'll pass by and throw blankets back on their beds and pick up dirty clothes...just because I'm a cool mom... :LOL

We have a no food or drink in the room policy though, so it doesn't get too bad.
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#7 of 16 Old 04-27-2005, 12:13 PM
 
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My sister and I were just talking about this age this AM. She has a DD and I am temporarily raising my nephew and they are both 11 and we are both considering military school! I assume my DN is a pain in the rear because he is angry due to the situation that brought him to me, but when I talk to my sister and read this thread, I realize it is more of the age thing. The eye rolling, the inability to answer a question with a yes or no, the extreme responses to every situation, the inability to remember to brush your teeth every AM but you can remember a Yugioh card that you were going to trade with a guy you met at Boy Scouts a month ago...

We have determined that with puberty, all the blood that used to circulate to their brain is now routed to the genitals. Both of our kids have magically forgotten how to groom themselves, clean their room, and how to cohabit civilly with other members of the family. You know the "Red Tent" for woman to seclude themselves during their moontime? Perhaps we need a padded tent for 11yos so they can just bounce of the walls with their raging minds and we can hose them down with soapy water once in a while.

I really needed to read this today. I often assume my nephew acts out because of his life changes, but my sister raised her child "from scratch" and she has been transformed into a lunatic with no social skills. Does it get better after this hormonal surge, or is this just the beginning of years of angry, toddler thinking people in really big bodies?
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#8 of 16 Old 04-27-2005, 02:30 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joan
Even though there's drama, don't you find that their good moods go in the extreme as well? I mean, there are times when dd is ultra-helpful or responsible and she seems so grown-up---more like a sister than a dd. We recently went clothes shopping together and it was easy to forget that she is only 10. The times when she's trying to sit on my lap or joking around or having an interesting conversation sort of balance out the eye-rolling/foot-stomping times, yk? (Except maybe for when I'm pms-ing. My biggest fear is that she and I will be on the same schedule! :LOL

Anyway, I'm assuming it'll all balance out after puberty.
I agree with most of this- except for the balancing out after puberty part!!! Maybe it will balance out when she's 22 and on her own!!:LOL

I see puberty as similar to menopause in some ways. There's the whole peri-menopause thing that lasts for years before and after the actual event. If you think of puberty as starting at age 9 and lasting until about 17 then maybe "balancing out after puberty" is realistic!!!

My daughters get $20 a month in allowance. I buy them clothes, and I'm more than willing to pack their lunches for school everyday, but if they want to buy lunch at school, or a water bottle or ice cream, it comes out of their allowance. Except for birthdays, I don't buy them toys/games/videos. Recently they spent most of their allowance (several months' worth saved up) on books through the school's book order.

Room cleaning: things don't need to be "spotless" but they're somewhat responsible for their own laundry. I don't wash any clothes that are not in the hamper, or if I can't walk to the hamper safely. Often, I ask them to put clothes into a basket for me to wash. After the clothes are washed, they get to put them away. If they can't find a favorite outfit, or something gets wrinkled from being in the basket too long, it's not my problem.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19 (in Israel for another school year), Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 12(homeschooled)
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#9 of 16 Old 04-28-2005, 01:28 AM
 
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"I look like I'm looking at you while you talk to me, but actually I'm looking right through you and not paying the least little bit of attention to what you're saying" thing going on?

ARgh!!! YES!!!! My son is 10 1/2 and we are so there.

Gracious!!!!

I take lots of deep breaths and I must admit I holler way too much (though I work on this daily).

He does do chores...he does the supper dishes each night. He takes out the garbage when I ask. I must say I've been quite a stickler for these things getting done, so he knows it's just easier (mom is SUCH a nag!....) if he does it right away. i'm not so sure I'm proud of that "sticlkeryness" of mine though.

I don't make him keep his room clean. However, if gramma or auntie is coming to stay (which happens about once a year), I ask him to make his bed and put all his stuff in his closet....the door must close. If I want it "clean clean" then I do it. Mostly I don't care. It's his room. No food allowed in there though...I've found dried apple cores, peanut butter sandwich crusts.....good god!!!!!!

Good luck and hang in there!

Abby
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#10 of 16 Old 04-30-2005, 12:18 AM
 
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My dd was 10 in Feb, but she definitely fits the above descriptions.
I find it helpful to try very hard to not engage her when she's doing the eye-rolling, sarcastic mouth, you-are-an-idiot-mother thing. I stay calm, speak softly, and let her burn out her energy without me getting into a screaming match with her. I don't know if it helps or hurts that I was a melodramatic pain in the butt just like her?
On the other hand, as someone mentioned above, she is sometimes so much fun to be around. We had a lovely recent shopping trip, and recently worked on a ribbon weaving project together in which the instructions were really messed up and she was a lot of fun and not the least frustrated when we had to keep taking it apart. She's very bright, and quick witted, making her a great conversationalist when she's in the mood. I see flashes of who she will be as an adult every so often.
Hopefully, we'll make it through these tween years with our relationship intact!
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#11 of 16 Old 05-01-2005, 08:58 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doctorjen
I stay calm, speak softly, and let her burn out her energy without me getting into a screaming match with her.
Excellent advice! It's amazing how well this response works. (I confess, there are times when I let her push my buttons, but when I can maintain my calm, the storm passes so quickly and my sweet dd re-emerges.) (Is "re-emerges" a word?)

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#12 of 16 Old 05-01-2005, 09:05 AM
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I am so glad I found this thread!

It is actually making my situation feel normal!

My ds11 does this sort of thing all the time. I, too, am at my wits end. He is so rude. I'm really trying to make adjustments for him but it is hard. Even then he is downright hateful! "DON'T TALK TO ME!" Ugh!

He is so irrational with the things he thinks. I find myself either having stupid conversations with him to try and explain how, yes, things really are fair - or just getting furious and irritated with him and demanding he stop talking RIGHT NOW! I know that if he feels that way, however wrong it is, then I need to acknowledge it and at least try to make him feel differently, but damn! One person can only take so much crap!

Okay. There you have it!

Sorry about taking over the thread. Boy I am so glad I found this thread.......

Trying to do the right thing with three kids and a hubby. 
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#13 of 16 Old 05-01-2005, 09:29 PM
 
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I don't know how I missed this!! But my soon to be 11 yo is exactly the same! No advice or solutions here, we're working on it.

But to answer the op questions,

Also, do your preteens do chores? How do you get them to participate in household chores without hearing that whine "I'M BORED!!!"?? Nothing set in stone, but I expect her to help when she's asked - setting/clearing the dinner table, vacuuming (if she wore her shoes in the house) laundry (she does her own if it doesn't make it to the laundry basket). I don't get the I'm bored, I get complaince, verbally, and then nothing.

Do you give your preteens an allowance? $5 a week to spend, $5 to save. But we agreed that we'd keep the saving money and put it in the bank for her, but we've been lax.

Do you make them keep your room clean? I try, God knows, I try!!! (I assume you mean their room).
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#14 of 16 Old 05-03-2005, 01:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmace
4. She gives her baby sister a bath every few days. She climbs right in the tub with the baby, they play for a while, then she washes her and I help rinse her hair. I hesitate to call this a "chore" though, because she begged me to let her do it! The other day the baby needed a bath desperately (she's been playing outside) and her sister was at school, and she cried the whole time she was in there "Sissy! Siiiissssyyyyy!!!!"

..
My personal history made me really notice this message and is compelling me to reply. I know my history probably makes me over react, however, I just can't let this go without saying that I hope you are in the bathroom while your 11 yo gives the baby a bath. As a kid, my neighbor friend was doing this with her baby sister and the baby drowned because she got out (to get a towel or something). As you can imagine not only did the family lose a beloved baby but the older child was never the same either. In fact, it was pretty traumatic for me and I wasn't even there.

Thanks for reading and please know I don't mean to be critical or tell you what to do.
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#15 of 16 Old 05-06-2005, 10:57 PM
 
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I don't really belong here because my dd is six but this whole thread is HER. Yes, she's in extremes. The good moods are SO good. She can be so exhuberantly happy and helpful. Or so sweet and loving. Or so drive you up a wall obnoxious with the tone of voice, smart mouthed "mom, you are so stupid it's amazing you know how to breathe" attitude. I somehow thought it would start to mellow out about, oh, 7 or 8. This thread is such a buzz kill :LOL

Quote:
Originally Posted by doctorjen
I find it helpful to try very hard to not engage her when she's doing the eye-rolling, sarcastic mouth, you-are-an-idiot-mother thing. I stay calm, speak softly, and let her burn out her energy without me getting into a screaming match with her.
How do you do it? Seriously, I want to know. Are you a relatively mellow person or do you have some secret? I think our problem is that my dd and I are too much alike. Fire meets fire, yk?
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#16 of 16 Old 05-11-2005, 10:24 PM
 
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I am a relatively mellow person, but I'm also a big believer that if you act how you want to feel, it helps you feel the way you want. Does that make any sense?
Try to act confident, and people will perceive you as confident. Try to act calm, and people will perceive you as calm.
With my high-strung dd, it's hard, but I've had some practice from my older child. I didn't have as much problem with attitude with him, but we went through some rough times due to his ADHD when I didn't even really like him much. I made myself tell him I loved him several times a day, and went out of my way to hug him anytime I could. I repeated over and over to myself "I am an adult. He is a child. It is okay for him to act childish, it is not okay for me to act childish." Practice enough, and you can do it.
With dd, I remind myself what I was like at her age. I remember popping off to my mom in the same tone of voice my dd uses. I remember that it wasn't ever really about my mom, it was about me needing to feel in control and mature. I think that's how it is for dd, too, so when she's being particularly attitudinal (is that a word?) I try my hardest to have the least attitude I can muster. I try to remember her attitude is not about me being an idiot, it's about her trying to grow up and separate herself from me.
That doesn't mean I always take a lot of crap from her, though. Sometimes I say "Look, I can't really tolerate that tone of voice anymore. I'm going in the other room, and when you've calmed down, we can try again." And sometimes, I lose it just like my mom always did!
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