Today I had someone comment to me on how responsible Turbo is.
That’s nice to hear.
It was with regard to her chores and how clean her room always is, and how little of her stuff is spread around the house.
They said to me, “How did you get her to be so responsible and clean?”
I smiled. Then I paused. Then I just said it. I said, “Well, when she was younger, if things weren’t picked up, we threw her stuff in the trash, or we just gave it away.”
Then they paused. Then they smiled, because, really, how does one respond to that?
I get it. I understand how unconventional that is. I understand that absolutely no one does that to their kids. Well, I did. I still will, if I need to.
But you know what? My kid picks up her toys because she KNOWS that I’ll get rid of them if I have to pick them up. My kid does her laundry and puts it away because she KNOWS that if dirty clothes aren’t put in the hamper, I’m going to get rid of them. She knows that if clean clothes aren’t put away, I’m going to get rid of them. She keeps her room clean because she knows that if it’s not, then her stuff gets thrown away or donated. She was old enough to understand that way before she even started school. She doesn’t pick up after me, so why should I pick up after her? I shouldn’t, at least, not after she is able to do it herself. Kids need to learn how to take care of their belongings and how to clean up after themselves.
Yes, she is responsible. Yes, she does her chores. This is because there are very real consequences if she is irresponsible, or if she neglects her chores. There always have been.
That’s how we did it. You may think we’re harsh. You may think we are mean. At least we have the courage of our convictions. You know what we are? Successful. Turbo’s room has NEVER looked like this.