Lighting A Fire
Why is it that motivating a child to do necessary things is so damned difficult?
Situation: Son has been receiving allowance for "chores" for the past few years. We don't ask him to deliver the moon. What he is responsible for is keeping his bedroom and bathroom clean, taking out the garbage once a week, doing the dishes and vacuuming. As a reference point, he's 12. Perfectly capable of handling this. Capable of doing more, IMO.
Our typical week sounds like this: Did you take out the garbage? Dishes need to be done NOW. Are you going to vacuum sometime today? Uh, there's a pile of clothes in the bathroom bigger than Everest... you get the idea. It's remind, remind, remind, nag, nag, nag. I'm so tired of it, and I wish there was some other way to get him to put his responsibilities at a higher level than his pleasures.
When I was a kid, and a chore needed to be done, I did it--and I didn't get any allowance. I was just as capable of procrastination as the next kid (aren't we all?) but I wanted to get my chores over with so I could have more time to play. Not so with son. He has procrastination down to an art form. "Do It Now" has no meaning to him. His mantra seems to be "play now, pay later". He's a coaster--capable of so much more and totally motivated NOT to get there. And no matter what we say, no matter the issue, he has no problem with that.
My biggest worry is he's setting himself up to fail in the future. I don't want to see that happen, but I'm damned tired of pushing him, too. And then automatically I'm guilty of being a "bad" mother (in my own mind).
Anyone have any strategies that work? Anyone have any ideas on how to light a fire in his pants? Anyone have a shoulder for me to cry on?
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
Lighting A Fire
Posted by StarvingWriteNow at 1/17/2007 09:06:00 AM