teenagers-excusesA mother asks: 

“My fourteen year old son is refusing to do chores.  For 14 years, there were no problems.  Now, I have a different child under my roof! We’ve always had a great, mutually respectful relationship.  Getting work and chores done at the moment is ridiculous! Every method under the sun has been tried – except I don’t believe in physical or emotional consequences, just loss of privileges.”

Genevieve’s response:  Hi there, this sounds very stressful and it’s all too easy for this kind of issue to lead to so much tension on a daily basis.  Instead of talking about the actual jobs, when resistances build up, it’s important to tune in to the quality of connection between you.

The place that most needs attention and is often missed is the child’s related feelings and the quality of connection between the parent and child.

I’m curious about why he is resisting.  He may not know himself, but there will be reasons and he needs your help to gain more clarity himself about why he’s resisting and what would help him feel more motivated and empowered. Perhaps you could help him explore what he feels when you ask him to contribute.  The time to have this kind of conversation is not in the midst of a power struggle about the chores, but at a relaxed moment when the connection is good between you and when you can feel confident that he has the time and headspace to explore his thoughts and feelings on the subject.  Tell him you’d like to check in with him about chores and ask him if he is willing to have that conversation with you.  Here are some ideas of thoughts you might like to share with him, or thoughts that may help you think about what might work best with your kid: “I’m wondering about how you feel when I ask you to help out?  You don’t look so happy about it, are you finding things hard?” “Hey I just want you to know that I’ve been noticing and really caring that you seem to have a lot of frustration relating to chores lately.” “I’m even more interested in your feelings and in restoring the harmony than the jobs themselves.” “I’m sure we can work this out.” “I really want to make things work better for both of us and really need your help.  I’m wondering what might make it easier for you to fit your wants and needs into any one morning or evening”

Perhaps read my active listening article for some tips on having conversations that are more likely to open him up than shut him down, as well as this one to ensure that the general communication from you to him is more empowering than disempowering.

Children of all ages respond much better to positive expectations than criticisms or guilt-tripping.  When trust and open respectful communication are maintained, the child generally finds it a lot easier to contribute and the parent finds it easier to remain calm, cool and collected in the discussions and negotiations relating to chores. Respectful requests are motivating, helpful and supportive to kids.  Demands and guilt-laden pleading cause kids to feel stressed, pressurized and rebellious.  Children and adults of all ages respond more positively to politely asked requests rather than demands. Requests rather than demands. Keep your requests relevant to the present and avoid burdening them with reminders of how frustrated you are at all that they haven’t done in the past.  “Can I encourage you to do a job on your room today?  Does that sound like a good idea?  When might be a good time to do that?  Would you like my help in getting started?” are suggestions that will most likely be received as an expression of care and support.  By guiding in this way, you’re helping your child focus their thinking without criticizing them.  Requests differ from demands in that they’re never reinforced or followed up with punishments, threats or enforced consequences. As opposed to demands or guilt-tripping which are discouraging; “your room needs to be tidied, I want you to stop what you’re doing and go clean it immediately and I’m not interested in excuses!”  Or “look at the state of your room, how can you go to sleep in such a messy room?  I’ve been telling you to clean your room for days now, what’s it going to take for you to care about keeping a tidy space?”  This communication is unlikely to be received as loving or supportive.  It’s likely to feel like the parent is offloading their frustrations, being insensitive to their child’s feelings and may well be received as a message that the parent thinks their child is a messy lazy irresponsible person.  If the child feels such feelings, it’s rarely motivating, it’s very discouraging and when it mounts up, it can feel debilitating and cause kids to give up on even trying to be a tidy, responsible, organized person. What’s your child really communicating through his resistance?  In my work with families, the issue of chores comes up a lot and when we pull apart a child’s resistance to jobs, it often uncovers a lot of hurt and unresolved feelings in the parent-child relationship that tends to surface around jobs (the same is true for couples!).  Lack of contribution is often symptomatic of a child feeling unappreciated or having low self-esteem relating to too much criticism.  I hear that in your case you’ve generally had a very open and mutually respectful relationship, yet even in the best of relationships misunderstandings and upsets happen and can easily build creating underlying frustrations. What feelings are making it so difficult for him to do chores?  Does he perhaps feel pressurized, judged, rebellious, pulled in different directions, for instance, does he sometimes feel caught in the middle between conflicts between his mother and father?  Maybe the pressure of these requests brings forward for him his many personal pressures and worries relating to his school and social life that he maybe feels are not truly understood at home?  Does he have some resentments from past conflicts that need to be resolved?  Is he free to show you his more “negative” feelings towards you, if not maybe he needs to (with limits perhaps “I want to hear about what I do that upsets you, can you please use respectful language”). How does he feel about himself in relation to doing chores?  I remember working with a family and one issue was that their 14 y.o. girl who refused to help around the house. When I guided her to explore how she felt in her body when her parents talked to her about housework, huge grief came up for her related to one time her mother called her a “lazy slob” when she was about 11.  After sharing the story and some big cries, she spoke to her mother about it, cleared the air, gained an apology and reassurance from her mum and suddenly had a lot more energy for housework.  I share this story as an example of how kids can become weighed down by our judgments and giving them the chance to share is one way of keeping the lines of communication more open. How did you feel about chores when you were a child?  Most parents themselves received a lot of pressure, criticism and not enough empathy and appreciation relating to chores when they were young and it’s very easy for a parent to transfer some of these unresolved frustrations onto their child.  For this reason, I always encourage parents to explore the feelings that come up for them when their child isn’t as cooperative as they’d like.  And explore if some of these feelings relate back to childhood. The parent’s reactions around chores are often very intense and out of proportion to the challenge at hand and if unchecked can cause a lot of heavy tensions to develop in the family relating to chores.  It can be particularly interesting to reflect on what was going on for you when you were a similar age.  But parents can break the cycle by identifying their triggers, expecting those triggers, doing some conscious self-talk that helps to put the challenges back in perspective.  This for me personally has always been a challenging area and it’s taken a lot of work to overall not pass on my frustrations and a huge sense of injustice around chores onto my kids.

My biggest aim is that they feel supported in their journey of becoming confident and competent in completing tasks and that they don’t develop a negative self-image relating to chores and tasks.  They believe in themselves because I’ve believed in them.

Guide him diplomatically to understand your perspective as well as his own.  It is true that even the most balanced teenager can have a tendency to think in terms of “me first” rather than group thinking.  It really does take years to develop the ability to consider the wants and needs of the whole family in conjunction with their own wants and needs, many adults still struggle to do so.  And it’s big work as parents to constantly and respectfully help our teen expand their thinking to remember and include the collective wants and needs of the family.  But this is what it takes and it does take the patience of a saint to remain respectful and refrain from demands, criticism and sarcasm.  But this is what it takes and it helps to remember that our kids are unlikely to behave better than we can!  So our patience is well spent. The teenager’s urge for autonomy is a huge driving force, they’re slowly preparing to go out in the world without us and most teenagers can’t help but resist or rebel against demands to some extent but do benefit greatly from their parents respectful and diplomatic reminders of why it’s important and necessary that the family works as a team. I try to keep my demands on my 16y.o. son reasonable and remain flexible.  Yet although his life is incredibly full and pressured (with just about all teenagers this is true), I do expect him to contribute with normal household chores on a daily basis.  This is not just to share the load, which is very important, but also to help him increase his confidence and competence.  Parents do their teenager a huge disservice if they do everything for their son or daughter resulting in them leaving home with very little domestic skills.  If I ask my son to help me cook the dinner rather than simply telling him what to do in a demanding fashion, I tend to ask ” are you willing to … “ or “would you be happy to .. “  For instance; “would you be willing to help me cook the dinner?” giving him the choice and if he says he’d rather not, I ask him to share his thoughts, I share mine, we chat calmly, we negotiate.  I might say; “ok I hear you want to type up your assignment, will you do the tidy up after dinner so?” or “ok I hear that you have a lot to do and I also feel strongly about getting some help because I’ve been working all day, what do you suggest?” (Updated to add that he’s much older now, 24, and I definitely see the value of all my patient facilitating and holding space for him during his busy teen years). When my child reacts, I hear an expression of some sore feelings.  If my son reacts to my requests (shown through his tone of voice), I try not to take it personally and try to remember that it’s an expression of his frustration rather than any negativity intentionally directed at me.  Through a snappy tone, teenagers (or children of any age) are invariably showing their parent that they’re hurt/ frustrated/ stressed or overwhelmed, which may or may not relate directly to the present interaction.  It may be indicative of them having had a particularly stressful day.  When this happens, I might check my tone, am I pouring my stress out onto the kids, I might back off for a few minutes to let him calm down and return to the conversation a while later.  I might express concern for his feelings; “did you have a problem with how I asked?”, “you seem really stressed, has it been a really big day for you already?”, or “what do you need?”  Because he can trust that I will overall remain fair (I definitely have my out of balance moments which he will react to very quickly), but he can be confident that I will always return to being fair, reasonable and empathic to sort through any misunderstandings, so his frustrations don’t escalate too quickly.

This style of communication makes it easier for parents and kids and tends to result in a much better flow of communication and cooperation and certainly helps to avoid the intense emotional reactions that can easily happen with teenagers.

I haven’t ever used punishments or enforced consequences in my 18 years of parenting.  I’ve never used tactics like a withdrawal of privileges or other punishments.  My children have never been put in time out or grounded.  But I can imagine that if I did I’d lose a lot of my son’s respect and give the green light for him to use similar kinds of threats, tactics and manipulation with his sister and us parents.  But because I’ve always aimed to be caring, considerate, fair, because he can trust that his perspective will always be heard, then I find that he genuinely wants to work well with myself and the family in general. Respect begets respect.  Because of the style of communication I’ve always used, my son communicates with me in similar ways.  He listens respectfully, he uses the word “acknowledge” a lot, e.g. “mum I acknowledge that you have a lot to do and what you’re asking me is really reasonable and I want you to know that I really appreciate all you’ve done today for the family.”  He is very generous in his time and patience in talking problems through, generous in giving appreciation and overall generous in helping to keep things working smoothly in the family. Do I need to still do a lot of asking, reminding, listening to suggested negotiations?  Yes sure, I do at times and I’m okay with that.  And a lot of discussions and negotiations happen with my husband as well, that’s just part of daily life.  Regardless of the style of parenting a parent chores, kids are developing good habits and they need a lot of help, support and reminders.  Sometimes I get very frustrated and we need to sit down and have a chat about jobs, which tends to help my kid re-focus.  Yet, it’s so important that their dignity is maintained through it all. It’s not that we don’t have our challenges and moments, every family does, but the difference is that we have the communication skills to navigate our way through with everyone’s dignity still intact and each person (myself included) can trust that they’re heard, understood and respected.
Genevieve Simperingham is a Psychosynthesis Counsellor, a Parenting Instructor and coach, public speaker, human rights advocate, writer and the founder of The Peaceful Parent Institute.  Check out her articles, Peaceful Parenting eCourses, forums and one-year Peaceful Parenting Instructor Training through this website or join over 90,000 followers on her Facebook page The Way of the Peaceful Parent.
  1. Pat Robins 8 years ago

    Apart from all the helpful advice I believe that 13 to 14 years is an age when most children go through a period of rebellion something pointed out to me by my mother who raised eight children and a pattern I observed myself with mine. It is in fact a normal part of growing up as children start to challenge their parents at that age. As long as you make sure it doesn’t develop into a full scale war and you understand what is going on they do grow out of it and become again the lovely co-operative child they were. Of course there will be another blip about 17 years when the intellectual debates start

    • Hi Pat, yes I so agree. This kind of push back is so normal and developmentally right on cue. There is so much going on for kids at this age, hormones lead to strong emotions, their friendships become much more complex, deeper, more intensive. There’s a huge internal drive towards gaining more autonomy and another big step of being their own person, yet of course their attachment needs are still high, yet how we respond needs to change and be sensitive and responsive to their changing needs. Such a tricky transition for parents and kids around this age.

  2. Teamwork Development 8 years ago

    WOW just what I was looking for. Came here by searching for Developing resilience

  3. Urska 6 years ago


    I have three boys (age: 11, 9, 6 ) and they participate in doing they chores. But what is a bigger problem for me is, they don’t clean after themselves: after they eat breakfast they don’t put plates in dishwasher, they leave toys around the house when they stop playing, they don’t put their shoes on their place, leaving schoolbags around the house… And all afternoon I can jut walk after them and kindly reminding them to clean after themselves. I kindlly ask them and tell them, that I am tired… But they they resist, once they are tired (but they can run outside), the other time friends are waiting them outside, next time time, they are playing and don’t have time. It is really hard to explane them for every pair of socks, why I would likethem to clean after themselves. It takes a lot of time and energy from me, but things are still not done.

    Any suggestion?


    • Author

      Hi Urska, it could be helpful to talk it through at a calm time when you’re all feeling connected and you are confident they are not too busy to think things through. Having a family meeting to talk through such things can really help, it’s important to keep it positive and present it as a problem that everyone needs to help find solutions to. Or even just opening it up at dinner when there’s a positive atmostphere; “so boys I’d like to talk about keeping the place tidy, can we talk it through and see if we can come up with some good solutions on how we can keep the place tidy?” They likely haven’t really owned it as their problem, they maybe see it as your issue. This approach might help them see that it’s a problem that affects everyone and everyone needs to contribute to making things work better. It’s important to avoid blaming or critical language and instead use I statements. I realize it’s all a lot to learn and change, but as we do the hard yards in learning to communicate our needs and expectations better, it really does invite more cooperation.

      Also, have you joined our free Discipline without punishment video series, the videos might help. Or better still become a Premium Village member and join our live round of the Peaceful Parenting Step by Step eCourse that’s starting at the end of this month.

  4. Alice Skopic 5 years ago

    I absolutely agree with the premise of maintaining compassionate communication. I’ve never had problems with my teen doing chores when I ask respectfully. It may take multiple times but as long as I maintain my manners, he will as well. The problems occur when I lose patience – which is a great reminder, respect and compassion are far more efficient modes of communication. Still, at times I worry. Because this type of communication is often non-existent in the workforce, will my child be the type of employee who expects his boss to have the patience to provide similar levels of compassion if he doesn’t perform at work?

    • Author

      Alice, thank you for taking the time to share your feedback and thoughts. It sounds like you have a lovely relationship with your teen. And yes it’s always good to regain the reminders of the importance of respect and compassion in our communication with our nearest and dearest of all ages. I hear your concern and it’s a really good question to explore. It would be interesting to have a conversation with your teenager about exactly this, their thoughts might be quite interesting. My own children are now 17 and 22 and both now have experience in the workforce as well as both studying and they and I are very glad that they’ve had the upbringing and base that they have, as it’s equipped them with a lot of important skills to work and communication well in these situations. Overall, young people absolutely know well that different people have different values and expectations, they are smart enough to know that they can’t expect the same emotional care and patience from an employer as a parent. One of the really important factors in bringing children up with these more respectful approaches is that they are well able to identify the difference between an employer being impatient because they’re busy, stressed and under pressure as opposed to an employer mistreating them. If they experience mistreatment in the workforce it’s an advantage to be able to identify it to avoid taking on shame that they shouldn’t have to carry. It’s also important because without identifying it, they’re unable to maintain healthy boundaries. An employer doesn’t and shouldn’t give them the right to mistreat their employees. Sadly employers often get away with abusing their power all too often because their employees have been trained into obedience, into accepting that which they shouldn’t. My son was in a situation when he was about 17 when the hotel manager was treating the employees very unfairly, so eventually my son had a meeting with the manager and because he used very good communication skills and was very diplomatic in his approach, it resulted in both the manager better managing their anger and my son being offer the opportunity to be trained into management. (He didn’t accept but it was an interesting turn around!).

      An interesting article to read here on the website on this topic is The Pitfalls Of Obedience Training. I’ll be interested to hear your thoughts.

  5. Nicole Carnes 4 years ago

    Wow! This is a great article. Sadly, I read it too late in the game. I have a 17yr old daughter whose pretty compliant with chores & 20yr old late blooming ADHD son who has always bucked every chore. Dad & I have never been on the same page. Dad will do his chores for him after a long days work & I’ve always enforced consequences for not doing them. Dad didn’t back that up. We now have our 20 yr old who makes good money & then spends the rest of his time gaming. It’s been a major source of frustration & stress in our family & especially in my marriage. I do childcare from my home & so need it to be very tidy! We would have regular peaceful family meetings where we all expressed our concerns, agreed to things etc…But our son would never follow through. I’ll still do my best to apply your advice, although late in the game.

    Sincerely, Nicole

    • Author

      Hi Nicole, if he’s still living at home it’s not too late. Maybe read this article as well “When peaceful parenting isn’t working, what’s missing?” as it touches on the authoritarian, the permissive and the peaceful parenting approaches; https://www.peacefulparent.com/peaceful-parenting-isnt-working-whats-missing/ When parents present two different approaches the kids get to chose which one they prefer on any particular topic, so I agree that with his dad always doing his jobs for him, he wasn’t been set up for success, wasn’t supported to do that which was hard to do and reach that satisfying place of having achieved a goal and feeling good about himself. Also unfortunately imposing consequences has it’s own pitfalls as well. Which is probably why you really resonated with the advice in this article. So gutting you didn’t know these approaches earlier, but maybe read it through with your son and with humility share that which you regret about your approach, and also what you believe hasn’t helped with his dad’s approach, and see if you can calmly and warmly with lots of empathy and connection invite him to talk it all through.

      See what he thinks of some of the points I make in the article. Perhaps if he feels a bit validated, it’ll take some of the emotional pressure and shame off him which might help him find that energy / motivation to set his own goals and tell you what you can do to support him.


  6. Bea 4 years ago

    I have a nine and half years daughter we are struggling with anger and refusing to do chores around the house! I ask her politely “ an you please come to the kitchen I need help?” She will answer me BOLDLY “ No” “never” I will do everything by self I will ask her come to the table she will quickly do! After eating she will leave the table not even saying thank you for the food and the dishes will be on the table unless I ask her to clear which she may do or may no! I will try to talk about it afterwards but she she realizes that the talk is about an incident she will plug her ears or grab a book and read! She likes to read and it has become her corner of hiding from doing what is asked to do! One time she refuse to help and when I asked her to set the table she refused! So I served my meal because I called her four times in vain! I ate and put the food away! She showed up later blaming me why I ate without her. I said I am sorry I called four times “I didn’t know “ she said!! She tried to open the refrigerator I asked her to think about what happened when I called her first! She got so angry shook the refrigerator door! All the food fell down! She went to her room! I waited for 5mns I went I said I know you are upset but what you did was not appropriate please go pick the food on the floor she refused! I was so upset myself although I tried to be calm! I ended up picking the items and she closed her door I did not want to talk to her because I was exhausted! This happens a lot kicking things around the house!! She is doing great at schoo her teachers always says she is the sweetest and she is above her grade level as well! I am I overwhelmed! She went to bed without eating and I don’t feel like begging her to eat! My God any help!
    I am a single mom! Only two of us in the house where sometimes it feels like hell

    • Author

      Bea oh gosh this sounds so very heartbreaking. For you both! The issues here are way over and beyond chores, her lack of cooperation will be just one of many symptoms. I don’t know what the core issues are but it’s clear that she’s not happy, content, secure and at peace. And of course you will also be so very distraught and no doubt overwhelmed and heartbroken that things are so very difficult. What’s needed may involve looking at many different aspects of your lifestyle choices like food and screens and down time and exercise. Yet certainly at the core, the connection between you and her needs a lot of repair. What does she enjoy doing with you, what brings laughter and smiles to you both? What are the activities that really improve the bond between you. This is where the focus is needed. From the peaceful parenting perspective, it’s always important to look at the underlying feelings and needs that are driving behaviour. Lack of cooperation generally points to lack of connection.

      What are the things that cause her the most stress and how can you reduce the pressure and stress? And for you, how can you reduce the pressure and stress. And for both of you, what’s needed to bring more emotional support, more smiles, more laughter, more empathy, more release of stress, more fun? These will be fundamental issues that may need addressing. Does any of this resonate for you? My heart goes out to you both!

  7. Boris 4 years ago

    Its important for teenagers to be obedient to their parents , this is a really great read

  8. me 4 years ago

    When you do all the listening and polite asking in the world and the teen just says ‘I don’t want to’. Also excuses like ‘too busy’; stubbornly refuses. And for some reason says ‘Mum you haven’t earnt my respect; I’m acting like this because you have failed’. I can’t find what I’ve done wrong. I am punished daily. I’m never forgiven for some imagined crime I am meant to have committed. I feel bullied. Disrespected. I am told by the child that she holds no respect for me. I’m told again and again ‘Mum I’m like this because you did such a bad job with me; and I’m not like this with anyone else. I’m choosing to be like this to hurt you mum’.. it brings tears to my eyes but like a good mother I don’t take it personally, I realize she is just trying to be her own person and ho hum the pain inside me wells but yeah get on with it, maybe I have failed in a way; or maybe I’m the best mother in the world and one day she may appreciate it. .. but I really doubt it from what she says and does today….Ho hum… does it really matter? well yes I’d like her to be a nicer person; .. and I do think she will have problems when she leaves home….but if that is the way she isthen that is the way she is.

    • Author

      George it sounds like the issues go way deeper than the chores, but this will be one of the many ways that the issues surface on a daily basis, which sounds very hard! Have you considered doing some family therapy with your teenager? Perhaps they struggle to express their feelings and likely won’t know how to repair the connection and communication between you. And it sounds like you are feeling perhaps lost and feeling a victim to your child, you both need and deserve to gain some truly skillful and compassionate support that will help you repair the connection and rebuild trust.
      Perhaps this article might be a place to start: Repairing the connection after conflict with your child

  9. JT 4 years ago

    First of all, it is not children’s job to do chores. The only responsibility that children have are doing homework, eat healthy daily meals, do fun activities, participate in after-school activities, stay out of trouble alcohol, drugs, etc. Parents are responsible for doing chores and keeping the house clean and neat. Children do not have to help parents with anything if they do not want too.

    • Author

      JT There’s no doubt that many parents find it easier to do all these household jobs for their teenagers rather than work with them to help them achieve tasks. But it’s important to think ahead to the stage of their life when they leave home and are living in perhaps rented accommodation and needing to do all these activities themselves. They need to be learned and practiced over many years. We have the responsibility as parents to help our children reach the point of feeling confident and competent in all the daily household and care activities by the time they leave home and go out on their own. Those who leave home and have not developed their skills and hence a love of cooking during their years at home can be at risk of relying on convenience foods. Simple tasks like buying appropriate bedding and managing laundry and changing sheets and duvet covers are simple tasks for those who have been doing it for years but for those who leave home and have had these activities always done for them once again they can either feel overwhelmed and perhaps even some shame around not being confident caring for themselves or are at risk of neglecting caring for themselves.

      Authoritarian (forceful) parenting and permissive parenting (not supporting them to develop all these skills) result in children not gaining enough guidance, but partnering with them and doing these activities along side them and making the process of learning and practicing enjoyable and satisfying really is setting them up in the best ways possible.

  10. mary 3 years ago

    Honestly as a teen myself a hate doing chores because I’m overwhelmed mentally. I wake up early, I go to school and try to get good grades then I have to deal with problems with my friends and a little bit of bullying. Then I come home and am stressed out and have to do homework and by the end of the day I don’t have the energy or mental ability to have to do chores all I want is to sit down and listen to music.

    • Author

      I hear you Mary, that’s all so much to achieve and manage and hold! Thank you for sharing your experience as it’s a good reminder to readers to check in with their teenagers regularly to make sure they don’t feel too alone with all that stress and overwhelm. And then when the conversations around chores creates a lot of upset then there’s so much MORE stress to deal with. Parents also of course usually feel very stressed and overwhelmed, yet it’s so important to maintain that warm connection and open lines of communication. I so appreciate you sharing your experience, and in my experience of talking with teenagers, it’s a common theme that youth feel so burdened with pressures and stress and worries and wish that their parents and teachers had more compassion for their struggles and not just accuse them of making excuses which leads to young people feeling so alone, misunderstood and frustrated. Good on you for being on a peaceful parenting website and reading articles like this. <3

  11. Erica 1 year ago

    I didn’t read everything but yeah you are right.
    I am 22 and I still live with my parents.
    And as you said, I would love to help but I’m scared. Scared of being critisized.
    I always wanted to help Mom and tried countless time to help. And all I got was criticism. And it hurts. It hurted a lot. And I got a very warped sense of what love mean. That got me into toxic friendships and almost into toxic relationships.

    She doesn’t criticize me anymore. But the emotions still linger and I’m scared. Scared of feeling awful if she says something not very nice. I know it’s not intentional of her and it’s a matter of upbringing.
    I want to help in the house. I want to cook too. But everytime I think about it I have a defensive reaction to it (“I don’t want to do it” kind of feeling.) Thanks to music, I got over the resentment that dishes used to make me feel. But I don’t know what to do with all the other chores. I don’t know how to have thicker skin… How?

    Sorry for my ramblings

    • Author

      Hi Erica thank you for sharing your experience. No not rambling at all, in fact incredibly valuable and vulnerable sharing. It takes courage to share our personal experiences and feelings, ESPECIALLY when we experienced a lot of criticism growing up. Good on you that you’re doing the work to change these body memory associations that you have. But so much work! I’m so very sad and sorry for you that this was your experience, you deserved better!

      My own daughter is 22 and she loves sharing her insights with people that she’s gained from her healing path thus far. It’s a beautiful thing when we take pain that we’ve experienced and have the courage to share it, and hence help others gain insights or feel validated in their experiences. <3 Wishing you healing harmony and happiness.

  12. Jen 1 year ago

    I have 2 step kids that live with us full time. We have always been so close. I’ve been in their lives for 12 yrs. But since the pandemic it’s a battle to get chores done. I only have 2 things I ask of them. Empty and reload the dishwasher. And take out the trash and recycling. Each picks what they want to do. But it’s like a fight all the time. My oldest will just do it. My youngest will wait till the last final second after I’ve texted and asked face to face to complete it. Like hours. Then we end up in a fight. They are in high school so not little kids. If I ask them to do anything else beyond that, they make it a compete argument about how much I do around the house. Acting like i sit around and drink champagne and eat Bon bons. I work full time from home. In a high stress job. I work a lot of overtime. And sometimes don’t finish till after 8 or 9. My husband sometimes has to make dinner. But we are an amazing team. I do a lot of tasks after the kids leave for school or while they are sleeping. I struggle with insomnia. So they don’t see me spending my days scrubbing toilets like a maid. But it’s a normal house. Sometimes it’s messy. But it’s not dirty. There may be sneakers in the floor or coats piled on a chair. But it’s dusted and vacuumed. I’ve washed the floors and cleaned the bathroom. They act like I do nothing. I recently asked for help with spring cleaning. It turned into a texting war with me in tears because my 18yr old pretty much told me I do nothing around the house and she isn’t my maid. I told my husband I’m done being treated like dirt. I almost went to stay with my parents.

    How do you charge the dynamic and get them to understand just because they are in their rooms like cats 24/7 doesn’t mean that I do nothing and we all need to chip in and help. I’m so overwhelmed.

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