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Aster's avatar

How to tell a teen it's time to do a chore? Details inside.

Asked by Aster (15864 points ) June 18th, 2012

If you have a teen boy and it’s time to do a regular chore how do you tell him? 1) “sweetie, it’s time to…. 2) Or, “ok! Go do the…..
In other words, would you be very gentle and nice about it or just tell him directly in a more authoritative tone? What words would you use in what tone?

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14 Answers

thorninmud's avatar

Text him: Yo time 4 chorz

gailcalled's avatar

If it became a regular reminder, I would sit the kid down and ask him a few questions. By using inquiry, it makes him obligated to respond.

“How can we work out an arrangement where I don’t have to nag you?”

“Are there any other chores or jobs you’d prefer and find easier to do without my bugging you?”

“How should we solve this problem?”

SuperMouse's avatar

I begin by saying, “remember to your chores.” If that doesn’t get the job done I take a more authoritative tone. Usually though, it only takes once.

jca's avatar

Does he get an allowance as part of the deal? If so, you can try sitting back and when he comes looking for the allowance, then put your cards on the table.

josie's avatar

First time ask nice. Second time, give a command. Don’t allow it to get to the third time.

wundayatta's avatar

If it’s a regular thing, I tell him it’s time to do the chore. Sometimes he wants to negotiate a different time. I’ll let him delay a bit, but eventually he has to do it. No more delay.

Sometimes I forget, and he gets out of it. Other times I tell him no delay at all allowed. It’s flexible, like life. I expect that over time, he will take on more responsibility for getting his own work done. It’s a process, though. He’s not quite a teen yet, but they call him a tween.

It’s kind of a game. But you know, I never wanted to do chores either, at his age. I was pretty selfish at his age, and didn’t see my role in the community. That came later. Maybe after I was in college, was I much more consistent with my responsibilities.

Some people believe in whipping boys into shape. It’s easy to get mad at teens because they can be so sullen and non-communicative. I’m not sure it’s worth the fight. Especially if they get it later on. But I will admit to getting pissed off at times. So I try not to let it get to me. I think if I remind myself that he is still really just a boy and if I remember what I was like back then, it will be less of an annoyance.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

My oldest is almost 6 – once he turns 6, he will have specific chores to do and a chore chart to work with. We will have a conversation with him about the reason for helping out around the house and the chores will continue until he has his own place. I’m hoping by the time they’re teenagers, this will become routine and if they do not do chores, they will not get privileges, as per usual punishment.

zenvelo's avatar

I give my son a heads-up. “In ten minutes it will be time to go clean your bedroom” or “this show is over in five minutes, then you need to empty the dishwasher and set the table”. That way he doesn’t fight me when it’s time.

linguaphile's avatar

“I need your room cleaned out by Sunday. I plan to paint it on Monday. If it’s not cleaned by the time I go in to paint… (add evil grin) you’re at my mercy.”

He’s still frantically cleaning out his room, but it’s getting done.

I tend to say what I need/want and when I need it done by. I usually add a “please,” but with the room situation above, I used humor.

GladysMensch's avatar

“You can do it or I can do it. I charge $15/hour to do your chores. At the end of each month, I retain the right to repossess your stuff in exchange for money owed. You will have 60 days to repurchase any repossessed items. Items not repurchased after 60 days of repossession will become my property.”

ucme's avatar

I find that the best way to tackle this issue is with patience & understanding, it really is the only way.

marinelife's avatar

I would get his input on when would be the time he would like to do it. Then, I would try to accommodate that.

Obviously, if it was taking out the garbage, you and he would have to keep in mind the pick-up time, but giving him a choice seems like the best way to get buy in.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

How old is he? What are the specific chores? Are these chores he’s used to doing already?

What worked with me was doing the chores alongside someone else while they were doing theirs.

bkcunningham's avatar

How did you tell him to do his chore(s) before he was a teenager?

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