Help My Step Daughter has poor Hygiene habits!!!

[deleted account] ( 10 moms have responded )

I am needing help with my step daughter I know her age is a little older than most of peoples childeren on here. She is 17 and I am so fed up I don't know what to do she lives at home still and she has horrible habits she don't brush her teeth, she don't take a shower and when you tell her she needs to she goes in there and just sits on the stool and has the shower running pretending to take a shower. She won't shave under her arms or wear deodrant nor will she use lotion. Her skin cracks it is so dry at times. She will be on her menstral and use one pad all day. She won't wash her face or hair. I am really frustrated about this because, we don't have those types of habits we don't set examples like that. I have three younger children and they are so embarassed they don't even want to have friends over. I don't blame them this is really quiet embarassing and hurtful that my kids feel like this. I have tried everything I have got her books and talked with her I have showed her th importance of good hygeine. The bad and good effect of hygeine. I have gotten angry I have taken privleges away I have got her into classes. Her dad in't like that either and neither is her Mother. We are really fed up and don't know what to do this is really embarrassing at times. We have really lost patience and I don't know what to do. Please help!!!

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Jodi - posted on 08/26/2012

3,558

36

3907

If she is satisfied with the way things are.....why is she not going to school? I do have to questions some of the enabling behaviour.

1. Why are you allowing her not to attend school? Is it because of the bullying because of her lack of hygiene? Is it because the kids were cruel? So instead of her actually taking control of that, you allowed her to be schooled at home. Enabling behaviour.

2. Why are YOU the one cleaning and replacing the furniture?



I am honestly not trying to blame you an her dad, not by any means, but every little thing you do to enable her is not helping but hindering the problem. I know it seems cruel, but sometimes, this is what you need to do. Believe me, once she is an adult, the world will be much crueler, and you may not be there to pick up the pieces for her then. She needs to understand and experience the consequences of her behaviour. Just remember, there is a pay off in this for her. You need to figure out what that is. There is a way in which she is rewarded for this in some way, because otherwise, she wouldn't do it.



Also, just remember, sexual abuse is not just about loss of virginity. It could also be something that happened a long time ago. How long has this been going on? What is her relationship like with her mother? How often is she at your house vs. how often is she with her mum?



Just another thought - have you tried a reward program for her? With something that is special to her? For instance, does she like clothes? Is there a particular band she'd like to go and see, etc? What are her personal interests? Use those as rewards.

Chaya - posted on 08/26/2012

737

0

229

Sound mean, but I would stand in the bathroom when she needs to brush her teeth, watch her take a shower, even get into the shower with her if that's what it takes. She won't want to repeat it.

Jodi - posted on 08/26/2012

3,558

36

3907

Thank you for elaborating, it is actually MUCH worse than I realised.



Have you tried some counselling for her (not just the school counsellor)? I'll be honest, at 17, she is a bit old to be doing this, and it could indicate other psychological problems. Are there indicators of sexual abuse? I just suspect there is more to it than lack of hygiene. There must be something else happening in her life that is making her this unhappy with herself.

Jodi - posted on 08/26/2012

3,558

36

3907

I agree Chaya, this is definitely a situation that needs professional help because it isn't normal.

Dove - posted on 08/26/2012

11,673

0

1349

That is really extreme. 'Something' else must be up because that is not 'normal' on any level. Personally I think I would demand that she get in and stay in counseling. If she doesn't change her pad often enough that it stains furniture.... she'd be paying to clean/replace said furniture. I think I would also make a daily shower mandatory.... or she can be confined to her room. I don't know. That 'might' help, but I'm suspecting there is more going on than any of you (except possibly her) are aware of and in which case... my harsher suggestions could make the situation worse.



I'm sorry. I wish I knew what to suggest.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

10 Comments

View replies by

Chaya - posted on 08/26/2012

737

0

229

The child needs more help than she's getting, that's probably due to the fact that there are no reasonably priced sources of counciling, or they don't know where to go. There are cheap or free counciling services around if you're in the US or UK.

[deleted account]

She went to a counselor for a while and they gave us ideals and tools to use which would never work. No matter what she has this I don't care attitude and could careless. She don't even try or attempt to try it don't effect her how other people treat her (classmates,co workers etc.) No I don't suspect sexual abuse she been to doctor she is still a virgin to add to that. I have had talks with her regarding that and she act's as if I am crazy for asking that. She is satisfied about the way things are and that's not normal I want her to enjoy her life as a teenager and have fun she don't act depressed or nothing she does things and has fun but, it is mostly with us or other family members she just says it's her that has to deal with it and it's all ok with her so why should anyone else be worried about it.

[deleted account]

It effects me because, you lead by example we don't set that kind example. The back of my house smells from her room. My kids are embarassed because, when their friends come over they talk about her and say how bad she smells. I don't live like that. I can't even have Birthday party's here have company over. She is a female and needs to know the importance of how to take care of herself. When she is on her menstral and don't change her pad and it leaks through on my furniture etc. that effects me. I have had to replace my couch my dining room chairs which were white and unable to clean stain off completly. As far as other kids they make fun of her, she lost her job due to hygene issues. They were asking her at work did she live in a fish tank cause, that's what she smelled like. She don't even go to school due to people making fun of her she has a teacher through the school district that comes and teaches her three hours a day at home and the library so she can get her diploma and graduate. They have taken her out of regular school and classes due to this issue and her being in the counselors office so much due to this issue. I just didn't feel the need in my first post to go into great detail and putting it all out there cause, I was just asking advice on how to help her understand the importance of this. I want her to be able to have friends and enjoy life as a kid before she grows up and has to be a adult. So hope that answered your questions. I am asking for help and advice so maybe someone that has dealt with this type of issue could maybe give me some tips to help her so she can make a change, have friends and not have to be having these kids she has dealt with be so cruel about it.

[deleted account]

It effects me because, you lead by example we don't set that kind example. The back of my house smells from her room. My kids are embarassed because, when their friends come over they talk about her and say how bad she smells. I don't live like that. I can't even have Birthday party's here have company over. She is a female and needs to know the importance of how to take care of herself. When she is on her menstral and don't change her pad and it leaks through on my furniture etc. that effects me. I have had to replace my couch my dining room chairs which were white and unable to clean stain off completly. As far as other kids they make fun of her, she lost her job due to hygene issues. They were asking her at work did she live in a fish tank cause, that's what she smelled like. She don't even go to school due to people making fun of her she has a teacher through the school district that comes and teaches her three hours a day at home and the library so she can get her diploma and graduate. They have taken her out of regular school and classes due to this issue and her being in the counselors office so much due to this issue. I just didn't feel the need in my first post to go into great detail and putting it all out there cause, I was just asking advice on how to help her understand the importance of this. I want her to be able to have friends and enjoy life as a kid before she grows up and has to be a adult. So hope that answered your questions. I am asking for help and advice so maybe someone that has dealt with this type of issue could maybe give me some tips to help her so she can make a change, have friends and not have to be having these kids she has dealt with be so cruel about it.

Jodi - posted on 08/26/2012

3,558

36

3907

How is this embarrassing for the other kids? I don't understand how this would embarrass them and want no-one else over to the house. Quite honestly, she is 17, if it doesn't bother her, it is her problem. Seriously, she will figure it out when some boy tells her she stinks and is gross. And who cares whether she shaves under her arms, has cracked skin, etc? She's a big girl, that's her choice. She is almost an adult, only she can make the choice to change her ways now. You've done all you can do. How is it affecting you?

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms