Let me do you a favor – free of charge. Warning! The tips I am providing below may drastically change your life and the life of your teens. And, quite possibly, the lives of their future friends and spouses. Read them carefully and follow them exactly for best results.
Moms, STOP Helping Your Teen Before They Enter High School
Abolish the Alarm.
Still waking them up in the morning? Stop RIGHT NOW! Budgeting time is almost as important as money. Let them figure out how much time they need to hit the snooze button and still make it to the bus or carpool.
Learning to get up in time to make their own breakfast or suffer the embarrassing consequences of a booming stomach growl in homeroom will teach them responsibility. You won’t be delivering eggs and bacon at the dorm, so why not ease them into reality now? It’s really for their own good.
Close the ATM.
Does your teen have a job? Great! It’s time for them to start paying for their own entertainment, clothing, electronics, etc. Close the ATM and teach them how to budget and save. It will be one of the best life lessons you can teach them.
Blow up the Brown Bag.
Still packing lunches for your 15-year old? It’s time to retire your lunch lady hair net. Let them figure it out. I promise they won’t starve. They may realize that having a lunch is important and actually pack it themselves. 😉
Let Go of Laundry.
Teach them now and avoid the added stress later when you drop them off at college. Mastering this skill can help them make new friends when you ship them off to college. They can be the dorm expert on how to use the washer/dryer.
Destroy the Delivery Service.
Still delivering forgotten items to school? Delivery men (and women) get tips for their service. Has your teen ever given you a tip for running to school with their homework? Or to practice with their shoes? We don’t work for free! No tip, no service, no problem!
Run & Hide During Homework.
They don’t need you. And, let’s face it, you don’t have the answers anyway. My best advice during homework time, hide! Go to the gym, grocery store, get a massage. Whatever it takes, make yourself scarce.
Cut the Cord on Cleaning Up After Them.
Are they cleaning their own rooms? Their bathroom? The dishes? The counter? The table? This one will take an enormous amount of patience. Or, an investment in a lifetime supply of batteries so that you can record your nagging messages and hit “PLAY” each time they don’t pick up after themselves. Eventually it will sink in (so I’m told by my Mom!).