11yr old. Unreasonable expectations?

MARIE - posted on 12/27/2009 ( 76 moms have responded )

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My daughter is 11 and a half and does NOTHING round the house. I have a 4 yr old and another child due in afew weeks. Am I being unreasonable in expecting her to do chores? She complains of having no money but I dont see why I should give pocket money for no contribution.What do other parents expect their kids to do in the way of housework?

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Dameka - posted on 08/22/2011

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Chores are not an option in my house! Our philosophy is that everyone who lives here must do their part to take care of the home. My 11 year old must keep her room clean, do dishes (alternates with my 16 year old), keep her bathroom clean, and do her own laundry...and anything else her my husband and I may ask her to do. We sacrifice a lot to make sure our kids have everything they need and most of what they want. The least they can do is help around the house. When they need money, we give it to them. If they go above and beyond, we may give them a little extra.

Michelle - posted on 08/22/2011

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I have 4 kids...7 to16... they all have a room to clean. Kitchen & living room for my 16 & 14 yr old & bathroom & hallways for younger two. They are not given allowances (our finances are too unstable) but they are given rewards such as sleep overs, swimming, hanging out with friends at park.....I want them to know that a family is like a team.. everyone plays a part & their contribution helps mom & dad be able to work & have time to do fun things with them. I also want them to know that in the real world they will be expected to perform certain tasks whether they like it or not & it is my job to prepare them for that. Otherwise they will be fired from their job, or unable to get a job and will have to live on the streets. Bosses will expect them to do a great job & so does mom. Hard work = good pay or (in our house) trip to see friends or similar reward.

Jennifer - posted on 08/20/2011

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I have a 12yr old daughter, 10yr old son and another son who is 9yrs old who has Down Syndrome. My children are responsible for keeping their beds made, toys put away, clothes away (DAILY) and dusting and vacuuming their own room twice a week. They decide who vacuums the hall and downstairs and take turns with these chores. The two older ones take out ALL the garbage's from every room twice a week. They also clean up their plates after every meal and help with putting dishes away. They help with sorting laundry and hang their stuff and put it away. My youngest is the only one who gets out of doing this. They don't expect an allowance and my husband and I will not ever consider these daily household chores work that requires money for them to do. These are everyday jobs that make our household run smoothly. I don't get paid to have a clean house but love that I have one and my children enjoy having everything in order in their rooms too.

Just a few weeks ago we had a wonderful party at our house with lots of kids everywhere and my kids were getting on to our little guest for leaving cups everywhere, pulling toys out and not putting them away, etc. The two oldest came to me and said they wanted everyone to go home but to clean their mess. I had to explain that it's a party and messes happen but that I will make sure everything is cleaned up. I was very proud of my children for having pride in their stuff and their home.

All three of my children have been doing "chores" since they were about 6years old and have never received an allowance. We do have Thursday Family night which they LOVE! This is mine and my husbands way of treating our awesome kids to a night were the TV trays come out and we watch a movie during a pizza dinner.

Mandy - posted on 08/20/2011

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My 11 year old son does chores for money. He started that "Can I have some money Mom & Dad" stuff when he was 10...We said "Of course...if you earn it." And now he does :)

Leslie - posted on 08/18/2011

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I read one thing about this father who said he started helping sweep when he was THREE. If you want a lazy, undisciplined kid don't ask them to do chores. Also the longer you wait the better at lazy and undisciplined they will be. :) (ask me, my parents didn't ask me to do much and it is really hard to overcome that lack of discipline when you have your own home). You are doing them a favor and helping them become mature responsible adults who can sucessfully run their own home. :)

Monica - posted on 08/15/2011

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No you are not asking to much. I am a mother of 4 ages 10-17. They did absolutely no chores around the house ( I felt quilty if I asked them to do any and felt it was my JOB as a mother.) In 2007 I had to have major back surgery and had to have them start doing chores. They did not have a problem while I was down. But now that time has past it is hard to get them to do anything again. I wish I would have started the chores with them a little at a time as they were smaller. That way things they should be doing would just be automatic to them now then a pain in the but trying to get them to do the chores. Hope this helps.

Cory - posted on 06/15/2011

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Wow! It's not being unresonable at all to have expectations regarding chores & daily upkeep of the house! *I'm also a firm believer in no allowance unless it's something that goes beyond daily chores like yard work or babysitting things of that nature. Instead, if there's something she wants within reason then by all means spend the money. As for cleaning their room, folding & putting away laundry things that HAVE to be done well that's all part of living under 1 roof & contributing to the home. I grew up in a blended family of 5 girls & 1 boy- from the time I was 6yrs. I was doing small household chores (folding laundry, matching socks, dishes, making beds, dusting). We got a very small allowance.

Carlena - posted on 06/06/2011

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Nope - you are NOT being unreasonable. I have four children ages 1yrs to 13yrs old. I wish that I had started with my older to kids when they were little about helping me around the house. Cause it's hell now. My 13yr and 11yr old do the following: Daily=Make bed, straighten room daily (takes 5 minutes), bring me dirty clothes, make sure their back-packs are ready for the next day during the school day (including papers that I need to see - if it's not done then, I WON"T sign in the morning.) Put their clean clothes away

Weekly Chores: Daily vacuuming of livingroom/diningroom, Daily straightening of the bathrooms (we have 2). It's a livingroom/bathroom and diningroom/bathroom for a week, then switch. Help get the garbage/recycling out on a regular basis. Do the dinner dishes: 1 clears the table, stacks the dirty dishes & puts away the clean ones if needed. The other one washes the dirty dishes. We have a large yard so 1 does the front half, the other does the back half. (switch weekly)

Ashley - posted on 04/13/2011

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I was doing dishes, vacuuming, folding laundry and cleaning windows and mirrors at 8 years old... not unreasonable at all.

Kathy - posted on 01/03/2010

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I have three children 17/g,13/g and 11/b they all do chores I work almost full time. they make there beds everymorning, put clothes in hamper and put away there clothes daily.
Every other weekend they clean there rooms and Daily one is responsible for walking the dog ,one has to do the bath and the other puts away the dishes. It workes for me they do get allowance the oldest works so she does not but it all works out in the end .

Janet - posted on 01/03/2010

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i am with you i have a 14 year old boy 10 year girl and 5 year old twins and if my 14 year wont money then he has to do chores around the house so no you are not unfair to expect her to help out x

[deleted account]

No u are not being unreasonable in expecting her to do chores. I have a 6 yr old that does chores, as does my newly 12 yr old, and when she lived here, my newly 11 yr old did them as well. I agree that u shouldn't give out pocket moeny if she is not contributing, she is old enough to help out. I know people that have 4 and 5 yr olds that help out around the house too. so no, most definetly not unreasonable! Just let her know that if she would like some pocket $$ she needs to help out around the house to earn that money. If she still doesn't want to then she doesn't get any money. I hope u can get things fixed

Tami - posted on 01/02/2010

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I understand your frustrations, and what works for one kid may not work for the other. But here is my most resent attempt at making my 10 year old help out....he looses priveleges from the x-box until his room is cleaned up. If he cleans his room right away he may get to play with it that day, although we have had a "stand-off" for as long as a week, it's his choice.

Karen - posted on 01/01/2010

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You are not unreasonable at all to expect an 11 year old to do chores! she should have been doing chores long before 11. Maybe a lighter load on school nights when she has homework. My daughter is 11 and empty's the bathroom garbage can once a week, feeds the dog, picks up in the living room, cleans up after herself, and puts away her own laundry. for this, she gets $20 a month, which goes straight into the bank. she has access when she wants it, but at least she learns to save and is earning interest.

Danielle - posted on 01/01/2010

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My daughter is 12 and we pay her $10 a week to wash the dishes every morning, clothes off line everyday and put her own garments away, make bed and tidy room daily, get mail and take rubbish out, and feed the cat. She whinges occassionally and whenever there's more than one day of her slacking off she forfeits the $10 - there's no docking half here, half there, we take the whole lot for a lousy effort!!

Lani - posted on 01/01/2010

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My daughter has been doing chores since she was 10. Vacuuming, helping with dishes and sometimes helps cook. She is now 13 and is more independent than I thought she would be. Not unreasonable. It is part of being a family helping each other out. No chores, no money for fun. and sometimes I don't have money anyway and she still helps. It is what is expected. Hope this helps. Good luck and Happy New Year.

Eppie - posted on 01/01/2010

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In no way are you being unreasonable. What might help you is asking yourself, what do I remember doing at the age of 11 around the house. For me I was doing dishes, cleaning my room, helping with laundry, and helping with my little brother. My son who is now 12, has been doing dishes, helps with the laundry, cleans the bathroom, cleans his room, and cooks one meal for the family during the week. I give him no allowance for these things as they are a part of the family chores. If he wants to go above and beyond these assigned things that is when his allowance comes into play. Things like, taking the dog for a walk, brushing the horses, extra stuff that needs to be done.

Tesha - posted on 01/01/2010

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My 13 year old takes out the garbage and does the dishes the odd time. We should definately set up a chore schedule in our house too. My 6 year ols girl will organize the shoes and clean up the front entrance when asked. You are Not being unreasonable, you will need her to help out when your new baby comes and explaining this to her ahead of time wouldn't be a bad idea.

Mischelle - posted on 12/31/2009

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my kids chores: 11 yr old: room, help with bathroom, wash laundry
12 yr old: room,help with laundry, help with dishes, pick up livingroom
15 yr old: room, help cook, vacuum,clean kitchen,mop floors
and all these will rotate around on a monthly basis except the major cooking light cooking will continue as lessons for younger kids major lessons continue for older daughter.

Mischelle - posted on 12/31/2009

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no way are you being unreasonable. at 11 she needs to learn that in order to get things she definately needs to earn them wether its by helping to pay for it with her allowance or you matching her allowance money. my children ages 11-15 all have chores which earn them not only money but computer time, tv time and special out time with mommy where mommy foots the bill if they get good report cards and they have good attitudes for a set amount of time.it works great in our house and theres alot less bickering in our house because of it. teaching your child work ethics early is never a bad thing one day they will thank you maybe not when they are in their tween and teen years but when they are on their own and paying their own way they will thats for sure!

Jean - posted on 12/30/2009

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You can tell your daughter that she is lucky she doesn't live in my home. I have an 11 almost 12 year old and she does laundry, cleans her bedroom, helps walk dogs, cleans her bathroom, helps fix meals, loads the dishwasher, sweeps the deck and walks along with having to do her homework. She is not paid for any of the chores that she has to do and only given money if she does extra work. Now we do pay for her sports items and her needs but extra spending money has to be earned or a gift.
Good luck and stick to your guns. You are not being unreasonable at all.

Shanna - posted on 12/30/2009

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OMG! It's time for you to be "mean mom" and tell your daughter it is high time she help out around the house. We just started implementing chores around the house for my two daughters who are 9 and 12 years old. If they do their chores which include but are not limited to dishes, vacuuming, cleaning their room, and their laundry (yes laundry), then they will receive an allowance. We've explained to them that we are simply preparing them for life after they move out of mommy and daddy's house when they become adults. Also, that this will teach them responsibility and get an understanding of how money is earned in the real world. Good luck to you and dont back down!

Jaclyn - posted on 12/30/2009

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It is most definitely reasonable!! A good chore to start youngsters with is dusting. You can spray for them and let them wipe the tables, and eventually they can spray themselves with supervision. On a daily basis our kids (10,5,4) have to keep their rooms cleaned, and clear their own dishes from the table. The 5 and 4 yr olds love to clean, they are always wanting to vacuum, sweep, and mop. Like a post before me said, starting them when they are young is best. The 10 yr old has had some problems in school and when he gets his nasty attitude, we make him clean the bathroom (sink, bathtub, and toilet!) He is fully capable and does a fine job.
I think allowance is a nice reward if families can do so, but we don't have the money and we just tell the kids that it's everyone's job in the family to help keep the house clean and nice. And that explanation works just fine for us!

Danielle - posted on 12/29/2009

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We have 5 children aged 6,8,11,15,&18. I have learned the younger they are when you teach them to do things the easier it is. My step-children are the older two and it seems to be a fight to get them to do a thing because I was not able to teach them when they were younger not to mention we only have them every other weekend so they feel entitled to not have to help out.
I don't think you are being unreasonable at all, my youngest has been helping with laundry and unloading the dishwasher since he was three. No kidding at 3 he would "help" when it was fun and now he knows how to properly sort the laundry and that has now become his job. Also at 6 I take care of all the sharp items, but otherwise my youngest will unload the dishwasher.
My 11 year old has to load the dishwasher and keep her room clean. She now has a pony so she is learning to care for and clean up after it.
My 8 year old has to take turns with unloading the dishwasher and is now learning to load it also.
All three of the little ones take turns scooping the litter box, and everyone is expected to help out when we are cutting and carrying wood in for the furnace. They all also take turns helping with the vacuuming and minor cleaning tasks. Depending on the age they aren't always perfect, but the kids are learning responsibility.
Everyday they are expected to keep their rooms clean and put away their clean laundry.
I am now also teaching my 11 year old to run the washer and everyone is learning to cook small things. They aren't expected to cook meals, but I am teaching them now so they will know how to cook if it is needed.
We don't pay money for these tasks, but instead with the right to clean clothes and dishes. My thought is you help dirty it so you can help clean it according to what your age permits.

Jennifer - posted on 12/29/2009

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I firmly believe that all kids need to have some responsibility around the house. We teach the kids that if you want the fun of being in the family, you also need to shoulder some of the responsibility.

My son is 6 - he sets the table each night, cleans up his room daily and makes his bed and folds wash for me twice a week (usually stuff like towels and matching socks). He also helps my husband sort the recyclables and take the trash to the dump once a week.

My daughter is 13. She keeps her room clean and empties the dishwasher daily. Weekly she takes care of our half bath, empties the trashcans and folds wash twice.

Both kids also help with big projects, like when we need to sweep out the garage or basement.

Allowance is not tied to chores in our family, rather is one of the benefits of being part of the family.

[deleted account]

You are not being unreasonable at all!! I have a 13 year old daughter and she hates to do chores, but she knows it's part of her daily routine. If you have to, keep a chart of the daily things she is expected to do, then at the end of the week, if they are done, reward her with money or whatever. If they are not done, she gets nothing. Trust me, I know that I have spoiled my child, but it got to the point I could not do it on my own, she has to help. Teach her how to do her laundry, and things that she will need to know when she is on her own. If she continues to resist, I would stop doing things for her, like her laundry and she will have to pick up the slack unless she wants to wear dirty clothes. I know you feel like the bad guy, but trust me, it gets worse as they get older, but they will appreciate what you teach them!!! To answer your question my daughter is expected to empty the dishwasher, keep the backyard picked up (dog poop), keep her bathroom picked up, put her clean and folded laundry away, and she vacuums when I ask. I hope this helps.

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