Drawing the Line

Wednesday September 29, 2010

I'm re-running a post from May below. I'll be writing about drawing the line between flexibility and inconsistency soon, and I wanted to "set the stage," so to speak.

Here’s where I draw the line. If you're school age...

I don’t check pants pockets. If you don't want something washed, don't leave it there! If you send pens through the wash, we'll work together to get the ink out of the clothes -- the first time. Then you'll know how to do it if it ever happens again.

I will not wash dirty, sweaty athletic clothes. If you're big enough to play the game and make those clothes smell like that, you're big enough to wash them! Of course, I'll show you how it's done.

Are your clothes on the floor? Pick them up yourself. I’ll call you into the room, point them out, and watch you pick them up and deposit them where they need to be.

Pack your own backpack in the morning – or better yet, the night before. Put in everything you need -- pens, pencils, gym clothes -- so there's not a mad dash back into the house from the car.

I will not hold a conversation through the bathroom door. Yes or no, but not a prolonged conversation. Save it for later.

I draw these lines because I love you! I want you to learn to take responsibility for yourself and to value me and other members of the family.

P.S. When you start early, it's so much easier later!

What about you? Where do you draw the line? Feel free to share what works for you and your family -- we'd love to hear!


Heidi @ Decor & More said...

I do wash the sweaty athletic clothes, but they have to get them out of the dryer, into their bags, etc. Love the one about the bathroom door conversation!

alicia said...

I remember this post from May, I think it was one of the first times I visited your blog- and what made me stick around! It was such a feeling of relief to have someone else say that its okay to have them do these things themselves and in fact, not only 'okay' but Better.
Thanks for the reminder

Rebecca Ramsey said...

It's SO good for our kids to learn to take responsibility. I agree that it's a loving thing!

Anonymous said...

I am with you on everything except the athletic clothes -- it is no big deal to toss them into the laundry with everything else. And I do check front pants pockets just because that is where most used tissues are stuffed (yuk!) -- I've had too many of them shredded in the washer. But anything not put in the hamper does not get washed.

Unknown said...

Way To Go!
give them the tools and make them responsible!

i stopped checking pockets when my husband got cut on the broken glass in C's pockets.

Michelle DeRusha said...

I love this, Laura -- particularly because my husband and I just had a similar conversation about responsibility last night! I had bought a chore chart and hung it on the fridge -- it worked super great...for about 5 days. Now we are back to square one. I was asking my husband, "Do I keep nagging? It would be so much easier on my mental health to just do it all myself." But we are trying to teach them responsibility! Now I read this, and I have renewed vigor to keep trying!

Susan DiMickele said...

I have much to learn about drawing the line. Usually it's on the second glass of water before bed.

Is next Weds. still good for give-away/review? I want to work it into Working Mommy Weds somehow b/c I think we'll get the most hits!

Susannah said...

Hi Laura,

I loved this post when I first read it. I still love it. Thanks for sharing it with us again!

Blessings, e-Mom ღ

Karyn said...

That is great! I love the "pen rule"! I'm definitely going to have to use that one!

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