How do I get my teenager to tidy her room?

Jean - posted on 07/13/2015 ( 6 moms have responded )




Hi! I am the mother of a 17 year old daughter, soon to be 18. I am sick of asking her to clean her room and she gets very smart mouthed and tells me to stop nagging her. I know cleanliness is my priority not hers but find it very hard to live with clothes all over the floor. I have told her if she doesn't clean her room I will put everything outside. It saddens me to think young ladies want to live like this and I wonder what sort of wife, mother she will make? Does anyone have any foolproof methods to change this behavior and get her to clean? My friends say just shut the door but I feel I am not teaching her anything by doing this. Look forward to hearing other ideas. Thank you!


Ledia - posted on 07/13/2015




You have two options: One is letting her learn on her own, the other is forcing her to do as you wish by enforcing your own consequences related to the mess.

The "Shut the Door" method does have some merit. No one likes to live in a mess, and if you stop hounding her about it and let the mess grow until even she can't stand it anymore, she will eventually clean it up and learn that cleaning more frequently is easier than letting the mess get so big it takes a week to clean.

The "Logical Consequences" method can be faster, but doesn't guarantee that she will continue cleaning once she is out of your house and on her own because she will not have you there to enforce the consequences anymore.....then she will be thrust into the "Shut the Door" method anyway, but you won't have to look at the mess.
To do that, you need a consequence that is directly related to the mess, and that is severe enough for your daughter to be encouraged to avoid it (In other words, more unpleasant for her than cleaning). One option is to give her a time every week when her room needs to be cleaned. At that time, go into the room and pick up everything on the floor, then donate it to Goodwill or whatever charity you like.

Jodi - posted on 07/13/2015




I'd go with the "shut the door".

Honestly, she will grow out of it. I just have my son leave his door shut, but amazingly, since he's had his girlfriend who he WANTS to have in his room (doors open), he has kept it relatively tidy.

Let's face it, he is the one who has to live in his room, not me. I don't even have to walk past it most of the time. As long as it isn't drawing rats and flies (which it isn't), I don't care. If he can't find clean clothes, that's also his problem because he has a laundry hamper IN his room that he is also responsible for. Yes, the girlfriend has meant he tends to take care of his own washing these days too, rather than wearing dirty clothes off his floor, LOL.

Arrdieu - posted on 07/13/2015




You could get their mobile phones as most cant leave without it,and ask them to tidy up and come for it afterwards, it could be anything they like most ,,,,it does the trick always ,godluck


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♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 07/13/2015




At this point, she doesn't have your cleaning gene and never may get that obsessive about it.
Shut the door. Let her live with it, as long as it's not a health hazard. Seriously...there are bigger battles, and do you REALLY want to alienate your almost adult child because she doesn't pick up her laundry in her personal space?

Dove - posted on 07/13/2015




If it's just in HER room... keep the door shut. If it has spread to the rest of the house... let her know to get the stuff in her room or you will take it away.

So... yeah, I agree w/ your friend. It is her space and if she hasn't learned to clean it by now... she'll just have to live w/ it or figure it out when she is out on her own.

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