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<p>How do I get my girls to actually do this?  They are 3, 4, 6, and 7 and if I ask for help with stuff my 7yo sometimes will but the others always laugh and refuse then run off (and half the time my 7yo does this too).  I have a home that's somewhere are 2200sq. ft and I've got mobility issues, I need help here to keep up with it all.  I've tried explaining this to them, and they know its hard for me to move sometimes and that they need to help but nope its not fun so they don't.  I've tried everything I can come up with to get them to help, and the novelty of something new works for a couple times but then it wears off.  I did a "chore bucket" where I put everything we need to do broken down into single tasks (like gathering shoes and putting away, or gettind dirty clothes out of their bedroom, smaller tasks that make up the whole) and they love the appeal but then complain and argue with e over the tasks they pull out of ther buckets.  We tried playing music and dancing our way through chores, nope didn't work (lots of dancing, no chores getting done).  I've tried setting the timer and seeing if we can finish a task before the itmer goes off and that doesn't work.  I tried taking away priviledges for not helping and they don't care (no computer or tv time? fine they will play with their dolls and dress-up stuff, oh no toys at all? ok lets stand there by mommy whining and moaning nonstop until she loses patience).</p>
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<p>I'm sorry, but I need help around here and don't get any.  DH won't back me up on this, as he was raised that the mom does all the housework and the dad works FT to make the money and the kids go to school (or in our case, do homeschool) and play.  I've gotten on him about it, and his response is that he knows that its difficult for me to keep up with it all because of hsing, my college classes, and my mobility problems so he doesn't complain about the mess.  But I can't stand the mess!!!!  Its ME that has the issue with it!  I want a clean house, and I can't do it alone!  (thankfully there are no stairs here in our home so I can get to every room easily)</p>
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<p>So what advice do you have for me to try and get my girls more willing to help out?  Even if they are just doing the littlest bit of keeping their toys picked up I'll be happy.  I'm now asking for a white-glove inspection kind of clean, I just want stuff put away and looking generally neat and tidy.</p>
 

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<p>your BIG problem is your DH not your children</p>
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<p>if he doesn't get it or back you up you have very little to go with</p>
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<p>I think it is going to be really hard to move your 7 year old- by that age they should be doing things without being told</p>
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<p>I started both mine by age 1 1/2- simple chores, putting away toys, moving on to other age related chores (by age two, they can clear the table, help with laundry, clean the house (dust, wipe, etc.), clean veggies, put away groceries, dry dishes, empty trash cans, help rake leaves, etc)</p>
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<p>IF they are not made to do they learn they don't need to do so-IMO</p>
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<p>my DH had a mother that did everything and he was screwed when he went to college and learned fast and now does not want it repeated, I did chores since I can remember</p>
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<p>we NEVER pay for <strong>expected work</strong>- everyone MUST help in our family otherwise it does not function</p>
 

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<p>If you only knew how true what you said is.................. But that's a discussion for a relationship forum I think, not a parenting one. (one day I'll knock some sense into his thick skull, figuratively of course)</p>
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<p>So far the only thing I find that has worked to motivate my girls to help is using the "hey lets do this to surprise daddy with a clean {insert room or whatever here} when he gets home from work" and it better be something that can be done in 2min or less because they WILL protest it if it isn't a quick task.  I don't want the kids to do 100% of the chores while I sit and watch, I just want hem to pitch in so that I don't spend 6am until noon every weekday cleaning......... (with breaks because I can only go so long without pain)</p>
 

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<p>You have to pick your battles on what you want clean & have more patience.</p>
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<p>So if they're standing there whining at you becuase you've taken everything away you need to ignore it. Right now they know if they whine enough you'll give in.  You need to be stronger & more stubborn then they are.</p>
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<p>Where are their toys kept?  If they are in their rooms, close the door so you don't have to look at it.  Let them keep their room messy, they when they complain they can't find something or something got broke becuase it was under something & got stepped on they have nobody to blame but themselves(especially the 6yo & 7yo).</p>
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<p>Are their toys being brought into the living areas?  If so make it a rule they stay in their rooms.  If they break that rule that toy gets taken away.  Sure they'll find something else to play with but if they keep bringing stuff out & it keeps getting taken away they'll catch on.</p>
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<p>Is it time to declutter their stuff? Less stuff means it is easier to keep clean & they will be more likely to help.</p>
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<p>You need to find 1 consequence & stick with that.  Switching around shows them they can wait  you out & that you aren't really serious about the consequences so why bother.  Once you figure out a good consequence you sit them down & let them know, especially the 6yo & 7yo.</p>
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<p>You can also have a reward. If 1 kid cooperates, that kid gets the reward.  ie, that kid gets to pick out a movie to watch or go to the park with just you/dh or something else.</p>
 

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<p>Good stuff from Carrie.</p>
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<p>It is not in the least unreasonable to want your children, who are participating in mess-making, to also participate in mess clean up.  Learning to be a part of family life, including the things that make living at home comfortable and happy (like keeping it tidy) is a very important part of growing up to be an adult who knows how and why to keep living spaces liveable, for the sake of others and themselves. </p>
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<p>Weigh the inconvenience/frustration of their whining against your need for them to start helping.  For me, I would *totally* accept that there would be whining, and deal with it for as long as it took them to understand that they *will* be helping out with household stuff.</p>
 

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<p>I would start with a long talk with your DH as to why he wants his children to grow up this way ??? (it shows lack of respect for you as well as their home and does not teach them how to maintain what is theirs)</p>
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<p>next, if you are not up to it physically I would tell your DH that he has not stepped up, not had the children do so and thus you must hire help </p>
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<p>tell your children this is how it is to be- the hired help will be coming on this date, all items you want need to be picked up and put away what is left on the floor gets donated and vaced up, if something goes missing-oh well (should not take too long for this to sink in to them)</p>
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<p>help the youngest child to know what is expected but the older ones should be fully understanding of what you can and can not do and with lack of support it leaves you very little choice</p>
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<p>post a free ad on craig's list and find a cleaning helper</p>
 
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