Help with 9 year old that will not bathe!

Amanda - posted on 11/13/2009 ( 8 moms have responded )

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My 9 year old stepson goes to the bathroom and gets in the tub, he washes his hair but not his body. You go in after him there is no wash rag and the soap bar is dry as a bone. We have tried sending him back, grounding him from games, timeout, and reading about hygiene and why its important, what can I do? Understand we had him all summer and I got him out of this habit and we were doing great every time but now that he is spending time at his mom's again he's slipping again. He told me he does this at his mom's too and I tried to talk to her about helping me but she got all defensive and is no help. I want to bad to treat him like my 2 year old and just walk in wash him up properly and see if it will embarrass him into doing the right thing but being only his stepmom I do not feel this is appropriate, and his father won't do it I've asked. Anyone any ideas?

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8 Comments

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Barbara - posted on 01/10/2013

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I agree with the others about taking him to the store and let him pick out personal items for himself and letting him know that when he does not bathe that he will stink and his friends will not want to be around him.

Scott - posted on 01/06/2013

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wow-really? you think embarrassing him will do the trick?
Look, he's 10, let him stink, it is pretty common stuff. Once he notices girls it will change-there is a lot more to be concerned about then that mom. Moms with Daughters are having the same problem. It's common, just keep trying to remind him.

Julie - posted on 08/13/2010

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Make sure he knows all the steps to getting clean. Maybe do an incentive chart. If he won;t comply then by all means tell him that you will have to stay in the bathroom while he washes so that you can make sure he is clean. I think this is boys in general. Tell him to take a shower instead. It is faster. Good luck.

Stacy - posted on 11/17/2009

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My son use to do that, but I told him if he didn't do it his daddy would. I think it scared him, cause he does wash his boddy now. At times he forgets his hair, but we send him back in. I also told him if he was stinky he wouldn't have friends.

Chris - posted on 11/14/2009

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try taking him to the store (walmart is cheapest if you have one close buy), let him pick out his very own soap, deodarant and other personal hygeine and maybe that will peak his interest in cleanliness. let him know gently that other kids will start to notice and you don't want him to be embarrased by his friends or even made fun of. I don't know how long you have been in his life but make sure you let him know that you care for his health and you just are trying to help. go online and look up hygeine habits for boys and print off info that he can read about what can happen if you don't stay clean, this may get him to better understand why it is so important to bathe. good luck

Ann Marie - posted on 11/13/2009

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I have five kids and three are boys. I believe the problem is two things. The first being that he's 9 and most boys at that age are just lazy and don't really care about personal hygeine. The second is that he's too old to take bathes, he needs to start taking a shower, that will help a whole lot with getting him to clean himself regularly. You don't want to walk in on a 9 year old boy even if you were his real mother, because it will embarrass him. Just try the shower instead of the bath and see if that works better for you. I know my 10 year old son has to constantly be reminded about hygeine. My older boys 17,19 don't, because they have girlfriends and they take 2 showers a day. It's just a boy thing and it will pass with him as he gets older. God bless and I hope this helps. Ann Marie

Lena - posted on 11/13/2009

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this is normal for boys not cool and we need to teach n help proper hygiene its hard .
its not you , its boys and the age to time consuming they feel.
been here two times.
i just tell him to go back in if not body done, i did that with mine or how long did u keep games ? until he did what said or time peroid type ?
its hard when step i had two of those and 3 of own .its hard ,trust me don't give up doing great being great mom to him , even if us step moms are always wrong.
not cool or good anything other than food or rides. oh yeah n money..

intensives > do work well though rent new game from blockbuster? good luck

Marie - posted on 11/13/2009

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give him incentives. instead of punishing him, try the opposite. If he washes correctly then he will earn something. Whether it be a trip to a park or zoo, or just something he likes. see if that works.

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