Thursday, 17 February 2011

Soul Searching

Erin's bedroom has not improved at all.  On her birthday 10 days ago I asked her if she would like me to clean and tidy her room, she happily agreed and in fact stood at the door most of the time chatting away without a care in the world.  I asked her whether she like the room neat and tidy and clean and she didn't have any real opinion on it.  Fast forward about a week and the room looked like it did before I cleaned it and after a couple of pushes I stormed in there and took away her GHD, laptop, and her new Blackberry not realising that her ipod is wi-fi enabled :( so I only removed that 2 days later.  All hell broke loose and she was impossible for days on end.  The house has been a war zone and totally unpleasant for everyone. 

She stormed in from school on Monday and stomped upstairs and came down looking all dolled up and promptly told me she was going out.  OMG my heart stopped and I suddenly realised what was really important to me.  She was only going out to a friend for a birthday dinner so it was all fine but it certainly got me thinking.  She is a 'good' girl, she doesn't smoke, drink, mess around with boys, play truant, she is not particularly cheeky in fact she is generally a happy soul, kind but not always that considerate, helps me only occasionally in the house but is often happy to make a meal or sort out the dogs.  So what have I decided?? 

To give her all her stuff back and allow her to keep her room the way she sees fit after all I have noticed that lots of people don't have houses as clean or tidy as I like to keep mine but I do see some that are are so I am not happy to be considered OTT or compulsive about tidyness - just normal.

Thing is I love her lots and just wish her only happiness and hopefully one day we will meet somewhere in the middle.


  1. How cool a mom are you! Well done on deciding what's important, and I totally agree with you on this one. At the end of the day it *is* her room - and her own kids will torment her one day with their messiness - and then you can have a good laugh with her over a Chardonnay. ;)

  2. A normal way for a teen room to look, Jo and if she is otherwise a great kid, I think you're SO doing the right thing.
    Good for you!

  3. This is how my son's (he is 31) bedroom still look and I don't even want to tell you what it looks like when his children are also here over weekends...with Leane getting dressed in something else every few hours;-D

    I just close the door then it doesn't bother me;-D

  4. Yup, i think i said once before - as much as it drives you crazy (i think we're on the same page here) just close the door.

    I did however have a huge tidyup in D's room just before school started and chucked out half a bakkie load of crap.

    Since then I have to say her room has improved. Perhaps you need to do the same? Whilst she is not there. She won't even notice what is gone.

    But otherwise?

    Keep the door closed and if she comes to you looking for something she can't find, but needs asap? Well, it's her problem, isn't it?

  5. I have to fess that I was quite a slob growing up too. Thankfully I married young and then started keeping house and tidying naturally.
    Get her to keep her door closed if it freaks you out. I couldn't cope without my Rumby - I would be a total grouch, nag grump.

  6. I do close the door, its just that her room could be so nice, she has lovely furniture from IKEA the bed actually can be used as a double and it is always cold in there for some reason just horrible really.

  7. Awesome post. So full of so glad you had this ka-ching moment. As a teen my room was a bit messy and then I would do a major clean once a week or something. You may find that now that you have abdicated that she will begin to take owneship.

    What a relief though; to put this rod for your back to bed. And you are right --- not all of us are as tidy as you. ;-)

  8. O.M.W!! Compared to my son's room, Erin's is *spotless*!!! Oh, how I wish he would tidy his room, but I gave up long ago, because like you, I realised that while he had a messy room, he was a good, sensible, helpful boy, who very rarely gave me grief. I'd rather have that than a tidy room and the son from hell! :D

  9. I remember my parents moaning at me too :-)

    Not a parent, so I am in position to comment...but I think you did good :-)

  10. Oh yes, the bedrooms..... I have a major clean up every 6 weeks or so. Nothing worth stressing over :)

  11. What a lovely, honest post, Clare. I can really relate to your desire to have Erin's room look pretty and cosy and, well, the sort of place you'd like to spend time in. I think it would be hard for me to cope not just with the mess but with the realization that it's just not important for her to have a tidy space. It seems, well, wrong! :-) So good for you for deciding to shut your eyes to all of that and instead focus them on everything you love and admire about your daughter. That's a good lesson for all of us.