Name: margalit
Location: Massachusetts, United States Professional writer, educational advocate, opinionated ultra liberal mother of 18 year old twins, living life in the slow lane due to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and diabetes.

email: margalitc at yahoo dot com

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Friday, March 21, 2008

When good kids go bad

My kids have their issues, God knows, but essentially they're nice, polite, well-mannered kids. Ok, they have some things that drive me nuts, and I'm working hard with them to make changes, but for the most part they're fairly normal teenagers.

However, they are slobs. Oh boy, are they slobs. The Girl has never conquered the idea that when you unwrap something you throw away the wrapper. Every bandaid, every piece of food, every candy bar... no matter what it is, she sheds that wrapper and where it falls is where it stays. She just can't seem to make the connection that once it's off the item, it's garbage.

So I follow her around with a brown paper bag and make her throw stuff away because I'm that mean. Yes indeed, I am.

However, this slovenly behavior is not limited to wrappings and packaging. Oh no, it's everything. There is no such thing in our house as away. Like in "put that away." To them, away means someplace else. So if I tell them to put the scissors away, and they DO know where they have gotten them from, they'll move the scissors from the coffee table to the desk, but they will not make the effort to put the damn scissors in the drawer.

This is driving me nuts. NUTS, I tell you. So this week I've vowed to keep the house clean at least through the weekend. The kids didn't have school today, so essentially this is day one of the effort. I've had to tell them to pick up their glasses, cups, dishes, et al pretty much every time they put a morsel of food in their mouths. I've had to make them throw everything that is garbage away.

They were into it at first. At first. But by late this afternoon tempers were wearing thin on both sides. I kept saying "If you do it right the first time, I won't bother you. Just throw it out, put it away, and keep the dishes out of the living room." These are not hard rules, but by 8, they were ready to declare a mutany.

When one is parenting teens, one has to be on their feet at all times. So I started in with the threats. Cell phones are already gone. That's always the first to go. Ipods are next. So I threaten the Boy with taking away his Ipod and deleting Itunes. He is horrified, and tells me I can't do that. I retort with "Watch me" and he says, "That's like deleting your blog. I'll just delete your blog if you take away my Ipod."

You should have seen his face when I told him that my blog is backed up weekly. He was so disappointed.

Score one for Mom!

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Blogger Rhea said...

Blogging technology wins!

22/3/08 8:25 AM  
Blogger Daisy said...

Ooh! You've out-techied the teen! I'm impressed. Good luck on the nagging front!

22/3/08 8:59 AM  

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