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DD15 is a slob.  She leaves her clothes lying all over the floor of her room, including her basketball uniform which does not belong to her, and her school uniforms.  She has a place for all her clothes--apparently it's just less trouble to drop them on the floor rather than walking 3 steps to the closet to hang something up or put something in the dirty basket.  I get that this is pretty normal for teens, but we have a cat who is mostly DD's, and she wants the cat in her room at night.  The cat has peed on clothes left on the floor a few times (maybe 4 total over the past year).  He has never peed on the floor, just on clothes left on the floor.  We don't know why he does this--he has a litter box in her room and it doesn't seem to be an issue of the litter box not being clean enough for him or anything like that). I've told DD in the past that she either has to keep the clothes off the floor or the cat can't be in her room.  She isn't keeping the clothes off the floor but continues to let the cat in her room.  She set out her school uniform on the floor last night and the cat peed on them (WHY she thought taking a skirt and dress shirt off hangers and putting them on the floor was the thing to do I have no idea).  This can't continue.  I don't want to have to worry about cat pee on the carpet, and if DH finds out the cat is doing this he's likely to insist that the cat has to go.  Realistically I cannot actually prevent DD from letting the cat in her room, so I need ideas for consequences to motivate her to keep her clothes off the floor, or for other ways to handle this situation.

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How would I handle it? Most of your kids have executive functioning issues. (Half of mine do too, so I am very much living this also.) Figure out what works for your kid. I have one kid who

I know that this is not what you want to hear, but it's the only thing that I can suggest. You have to provide the executive function that she lacks. I know it stinks. But there it is. So, I

Meant to add: My ds sounds similar to your dd, but we don't have a cat. He drops his clothes in the middle of the floor. I started putting a laundry basket right in that spot and most of the time

I think you just need to enforce a certain time of day for pick up for everyone.   I totally get it, we have a cat that will do this too and I've had other cats do it too.  Not horribly, just intermittently.  I think a pile of fabric just resembles litter enough to be alluring.  For us our problem area is in our basement where clothes from the laundry chute pile up.  

The other thing you could do is put a litter box in her room and make her be in charge of it. That would also require enforcement though.  It would be nice if teens would just remember and do stuff when asked.  I remind myself regularly those brain cells are developing until the late 20's and they usually aren't air headed on purpose.  

I do recommend spraying some enzymatic cleaner on carpeting even if it seems like none hit the carpet. 

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Is she the one doing the clean up? If not, I would definitely make her. I also wouldn't replace any clothes ruined by cat pee, even if it's a uniform. She would just have to keep wearing the same one even if she has to wash it daily. 

It also wouldn't hurt to add more boxes to her room. Get the inexpensive disposable kind as test boxes before investing in good ones just to see if it works.  You could even try different kinds of litter to see even any of those are more attractive than smelly teen clothing.

Good luck! Neither messy teens nor cat pee are fun to deal with.

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I’d assume she’s the type that needs to see something to remember it. I’d do whatever it takes to make it just as easy to clean up as to leave it a mess. Start by taking off her closet doors.  I’d put a bunch of hooks up on a board in the back of the closet so it’s easy to hang stuff on the hooks instead of hangers. 
 

I’d probably also replace any dressers with bins in cubes and put large labels on them. 
 

 

Here’s what I mean. And pretty much anything from the same poster’s butterfly organization tips work well for messy kids 

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I'd probably refuse to wash cat pee clothes or help with emergency laundry/clean up needs. She'd either end up wearing the stinky things or washing them herself or not having clean clothes for her game/school.  If her ball uniform gets ruined, she can pay to replace it.  I'm sure other people will have better solutions, but with one of mine the only thing that works at all is me refusing to put effort into fixing their problems that they create for themselves.  I mean, I'll do anything that they need and spend half of my life driving them around, but we also have a few situations where the solution is obvious, the bad result mostly hurts them, the issue is both preventable and fixable...and I've decided that it will never get dealt with if there is no incentive to do so.  

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 I would go to Amazon and look at valets.  (I saw a white one that might work if the others are too masculine looking for her room.)   

 Maybe this would help if she has one more proper option in addition to closet or hamper ? ( You could try having her use a chair to hang clothes over the back, but it won't solve the cat problem if the clothes are left on the seat. ) 

I bought a valet for someone in my home...it can be a very useful piece of furniture!

 

 

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After seeing the post about the valet...I did get a simple inexpensive coatrack for somebody in my family to hang clothes on.  If the problem is being ornery it won't help, but if it's about needing a temporary place to put 'sort of in use' outfits, it would fix it.  

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Oh in terms of storage, I find these over the door clothes hangers helpful for keeping day to day clothes off the floor at our house ...

https://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/product/idesign-10-hook-over-the-door-rack-in-pearl-white/1061437487?keyword=over+the+door+clothes+hanger&wmSkipPwa=1

I do agree having her do the laundry and be in charge of the clean up might help the memory bank over time.  I find that if I really want my teens to do something consistently, I have to be prepared to enforce it for a while and a habit is built.

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I would think that having clothes that smell like cat urine would do the trick. IME it doesn't come out with one wash, or even two!

Does she know her dad would want to get rid of the cat if he knows? That seems like a logical consequence to me.

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How would I handle it?

Most of your kids have executive functioning issues. (Half of mine do too, so I am very much living this also.)

Figure out what works for your kid. I have one kid who needs enough drawer space to put everything away. I help with a Friday checkin where rooms are cleaned to the allergy standards they need to keep to be well. I have another kid who hangs everything up on hangers and just has a few drawers for socks, unders, etc.

Your post asked for consequences (punishment). This isn’t a punitive thing. I am not sure why all of your posts come back to calling your kids bad things (unlikeable child is another of your recent posts) or looking for punishments. This has been a running theme for years and I think it cuts to the core of you not yet fully understanding the neuro-behavioral aspect of this. 
 

Yes, it’s frustrating. Yes, there are consequences when they don’t properly manage things. But, the goal here should be to help them learn to manage themselves, not to punish and shame them. Change your mindset.

”So, looks like the cat peed on the uniforms. Gross. I am sure you don’t want to wear clothes with cat pee on them. What are you going to do about that?” 
 

And then you sit. And listen. With your mouth shut and a pleasant look on your face.

This is THEIR problem, not yours. And you can’t control them to get what you want for forever so their brains need to make connections and changes.

If something stupid comes out of their mouth and you know it won’t work, you don’t have to fix it for them. Right, the fruit will bear out on this. So the next round you can say, “huh, looks like the cat peed on the uniforms again. X didn’t work. What do you think you should try next?”

 

 

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20 minutes ago, prairiewindmomma said:

Your post asked for consequences (punishment). This isn’t a punitive thing. I am not sure why all of your posts come back to calling your kids bad things (unlikeable child is another of your recent posts) or looking for punishments. This has been a running theme for years and I think it cuts to the core of you not yet fully understanding the neuro-behavioral aspect of this. 

I think you're spot on. I've seen this pattern as well. 

I'm close enough to neurotypical to manage, but I had to figure out ALL the tools for managing my challenges. No one helped me as a kid or as a teen. No one named the differences. No one empathized with how a kid who excels academically may still need structures and help with her social skills or executive functioning. 

As an adult, I've figured out what works for me. I've sanded down the rough edges. But I'm very committed to helping my kids navigate their challenges, and I think it's an extremely important mindset. 

It's not about consequences. It's about learning skills to learn to manage oneself. 

Edited by Not_a_Number
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FWIW, for everyone reading in and going, "Her house looks like my house"....Bright and Quirky is running a free conference soon. I've been listening to it for years. Free registration.  You can listen at your leisure. The content is up for free for 24 hours after each session, or you can pay for a subscription. https://brightandquirky.com  Anxiety, behavior issues, executive functioning....there is always great content in these areas!

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Ds (ADHD) prefers to have his clothes out rather than in drawers. He will clean up completely when it gets too much for him, but the mess that makes me shudder works for him...so his bedroom preferences I do literally nothing about. 

If he had a cat infrequently peeing on his clothes, I assume he'd run the clothes through the wash. He sometimes needs reminding that his laundry is ready to be hung on the line, so I'd remind him of that. 

Yes, I'd find it gross. I would not put my clothes on the floor and allow a cat to pee on them, however infrequently. I'd probably have one conversation about how I can't be replacing clothes willy-nilly, and to ask if he'd like help working on strategies to solve the cat pee/clothes issue, and then I guess I'd assume that the washing machine is our friend here. 

I don't know why or what I would punish in this scenario. I mean, it already has a natural consequence. Cat + floor storage = my clothes smell like pee.

 

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1 hour ago, gardenmom5 said:

This sounds like executive function.  How are her executive function skills in other areas?

They stink.  "Want to" is definitely an issue here, as I'm good at organizing and spend a few hours 3-4 times a year helping her organize and declutter her room, and she simply won't bother to put stuff away rather than dumping it on the floor or nearest horizontal surface.

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43 minutes ago, prairiewindmomma said:

How would I handle it?

Most of your kids have executive functioning issues. (Half of mine do too, so I am very much living this also.)

Figure out what works for your kid. I have one kid who needs enough drawer space to put everything away. I help with a Friday checkin where rooms are cleaned to the allergy standards they need to keep to be well. I have another kid who hangs everything up on hangers and just has a few drawers for socks, unders, etc.

Your post asked for consequences (punishment). This isn’t a punitive thing. I am not sure why all of your posts come back to calling your kids bad things (unlikeable child is another of your recent posts) or looking for punishments. This has been a running theme for years and I think it cuts to the core of you not yet fully understanding the neuro-behavioral aspect of this. 
 

Yes, it’s frustrating. Yes, there are consequences when they don’t properly manage things. But, the goal here should be to help them learn to manage themselves, not to punish and shame them. Change your mindset.

”So, looks like the cat peed on the uniforms. Gross. I am sure you don’t want to wear clothes with cat pee on them. What are you going to do about that?” 
 

And then you sit. And listen. With your mouth shut and a pleasant look on your face.

This is THEIR problem, not yours. And you can’t control them to get what you want for forever so their brains need to make connections and changes.

If something stupid comes out of their mouth and you know it won’t work, you don’t have to fix it for them. Right, the fruit will bear out on this. So the next round you can say, “huh, looks like the cat peed on the uniforms again. X didn’t work. What do you think you should try next?”

 

 

And in the mean time I should just ignore the fact that the carpet may be ruined?  

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4 minutes ago, caedmyn said:

And in the mean time I should just ignore the fact that the carpet may be ruined?  

It depends whether you care more about the carpet or about her learning to manage her life. Those two problems don't have the same solution, I would guess. 

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24 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I think you're spot on. I've seen this pattern as well. 

I'm close enough to neurotypical to manage, but I had to figure out ALL the tools for managing my challenges. No one helped me as a kid or as a teen. No one named the differences. No one empathized with how a kid who excels academically may still need structures and help with her social skills or executive functioning. 

As an adult, I've figured out what works for me. I've sanded down the rough edges. But I'm very committed to helping my kids navigate their challenges, and I think it's an extremely important mindset. 

It's not about consequences. It's about learning skills to learn to manage oneself. 

I have spent quite a bit of time trying to give her tools.  She generally chooses not to use them, so yes, at that point it becomes a motivation issue and consequences or incentives are the only way I know of to motivate, since talking is generally ineffective as a motivator with my kids.  This is a kid who would probably shower twice a month if I didn't tell her (about once a week, after reminding her a few times to shower) that her tablet will be blocked til she takes a shower.  This is a kid who's had a red crusty thing going on around her eyes for a good year and just will not consistently do what both the doctors we've seen for it recommend, which is put antibiotic ointment on 2x/day.  I have tried reminders, motivators, asking her what she can do to help herself remember, suggestions when she can't/won't come up with anything, etc.  At some point she just has to want to, and I'm not willing to have my carpet ruined while I wait for her to develop that on her own.

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2 minutes ago, caedmyn said:

At some point she just has to want to, and I'm not willing to have my carpet ruined while I wait for her to develop that on her own.

And that's pretty reasonable! In that case, you can probably think of the incentives most likely to motivate her herself, since you know her better than we do. For my kids, structured monetary penalties go a long way. 

Do you know if this bothers her or not? 

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8 minutes ago, caedmyn said:

And in the mean time I should just ignore the fact that the carpet may be ruined?  

I never said the carpet shouldn’t be cleaned. She should clean the carpet, or you should do it together if she needs help.

In my house, ds would need help getting the right chemicals, and he would then clean the carpet while we work together.

 

 

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As a purely behaviorist thing, I prefer penalties that happen OFTEN as opposed to when something bad happens. So, for MY kids, I'd institute a mild monetary penalty for EVERY piece of clothing found on the floor, not just for the times that it gets out of control. Rules that are there 100% of the time and that become habits are much easier for kids than things that require thought. 

Edited by Not_a_Number
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4 minutes ago, caedmyn said:

I have spent quite a bit of time trying to give her tools.  She generally chooses not to use them, so yes, at that point it becomes a motivation issue and consequences or incentives are the only way I know of to motivate, since talking is generally ineffective as a motivator with my kids.  This is a kid who would probably shower twice a month if I didn't tell her (about once a week, after reminding her a few times to shower) that her tablet will be blocked til she takes a shower.  This is a kid who's had a red crusty thing going on around her eyes for a good year and just will not consistently do what both the doctors we've seen for it recommend, which is put antibiotic ointment on 2x/day.  I have tried reminders, motivators, asking her what she can do to help herself remember, suggestions when she can't/won't come up with anything, etc.  At some point she just has to want to, and I'm not willing to have my carpet ruined while I wait for her to develop that on her own.

Get rid of the cat.   

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Yes, those are very much part of what we deal with too. Those are all executive functioning or sensory issues. 
 

Honestly, stepping back, I am imagining that you are feeling really overwhelmed? That there are all so many balls to keep up in the air and you feel like you are the only one that can do it because no one else will because they are x,y,z? And I am even also going to guess that since you have been at this for over a decade that you are also now having health issues? 
 

Because I am also guessing that most of us long-timers of SN kids also are dealing with that same boat. 

I am going to change my advice. What are you doing for you? How are you feeling supported? When are you getting a chance to just be you and not wife/mom/church member/housekeeper? 
 

Cat pee is annoying. And yes, that is the crisis of the day. But I think there is a bigger picture here....and that this wouldn’t be such a big deal if you were getting good support in the rest of life.

Is it in the budget to have a housekeeper come in 2x a week? Or to get a sitter for everyone weekly so you can get out and get away for an afternoon?

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25 minutes ago, caedmyn said:

And in the mean time I should just ignore the fact that the carpet may be ruined?  

Yes. Probably is ruined already. If can afford it, I'd remove the carpet, toss it, and lay cheap vinyl flooring (no seams) to protect the under flooring. Figure once she moves out (college, job) the floor will need to be replaced. Meanwhile she has to deal with cleaning her own laundry, even has to buy any pet smell remover she may need once teammates etc tease her about the stink.

Meanwhile I like the idea of a clothes horse/coat stand thing she can toss stuff on instead of the arduous task of opening a closet door and using a hanger.

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24 minutes ago, caedmyn said:

They stink.  "Want to" is definitely an issue here, as I'm good at organizing and spend a few hours 3-4 times a year helping her organize and declutter her room, and she simply won't bother to put stuff away rather than dumping it on the floor or nearest horizontal surface.

Dumping is meeting a need. 

It's unlikely to be 'simply won't bother'. 

Maybe it's an assertion of control, maybe it's so she can remember what she owns! Maybe she is overwhelmed by owning too much.  I'm sure there are many potential needs being met by the behaviour. 

Work out the need in discussion with her. Find a different way to meet the need. 

I would also be mad about the carpet. Teach her how to clean the carpet when this occasionally happens. Write it up as a sequence of steps and hand it to her the next time it happens. Help her follow the steps to clean the carpet each time. 

Or, yes, remove the cat as a factor in some way. 

 

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I would stick a chair or something in her room she can put the clothes on rather than the floor.  Honestly it’s the only thing that work in my house even for the adults and presumably the cat won’t pee there.  The enzyme spray is good for carpets as our aged cat let us discover.  It’s not perfect but it’s something.  Does the cat like her?  

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2 minutes ago, Ausmumof3 said:

I would stick a chair or something in her room she can put the clothes on rather than the floor.  Honestly it’s the only thing that work in my house even for the adults and presumably the cat won’t pee there.  The enzyme spray is good for carpets as our aged cat let us discover.  It’s not perfect but it’s something.  Does the cat like her?  

My clothes live on the chair, on the linen chest, and over my bedroom door. I do put it all away once a week or so. Definitely makes it harder for a hypothetical cat to pee on them!

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16 minutes ago, Melissa Louise said:

Dumping is meeting a need. 

It's unlikely to be 'simply won't bother'. 

When I was a teenager I did this exact thing, and the only need it was meeting was my need for laziness.

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10 minutes ago, Ausmumof3 said:

I would stick a chair or something in her room she can put the clothes on rather than the floor.  Honestly it’s the only thing that work in my house even for the adults and presumably the cat won’t pee there.  The enzyme spray is good for carpets as our aged cat let us discover.  It’s not perfect but it’s something.  Does the cat like her?  

Yes, he prefers her out of any of us.  Maybe I'll suggest she pile clothes on top of her dresser instead of the floor.

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I know that this is not what you want to hear, but it's the only thing that I can suggest.

You have to provide the executive function that she lacks. I know it stinks. But there it is.

So, I would have a nightly room check. Type up a checklist, and have her go through it every night. I do this with DS16. Have her put her clothes away every night. Have her set her clothes out for the next morning in a safe place (on the dresser or a chair, or yes buy a valet). Check that she has done it, and have her cross off the list.

If she does not complete her list, the cat can't be in her room. You said you can't keep the cat out of there, but I'm sure there must be a way. Shut the cat in another part of the house for the night. If she takes the cat in her room when she is not allowed, THEN it is time to give her a consequence for the disobedience.

Put the eye cream on her nightly list and watch her do it. Put showers on the nightly list.

If she needs an additional motivation, other than the cat, give her a reward for each week that she completes her list. Let her choose the reward. Maybe a bonus allowance or a $5 Amazon gift card, or a trip to get ice cream, or whatever.

Rewarding DS16 for completing checklists has really helped here, and we've had some big hurdles to overcome with neatness, taking care of his clothes, hygiene, and attitude.

But we have to actually check that he does his list, and we do that every night, still, and every morning. It's not fun, but he needs this.

I think either you will wait forever (meaning, she may never acquire these skills on her own) for things to get better, or you have to institute changes. Change won't happen on it's own.

I get that it stinks that a very tired mom would have to do this for a teenager. It really stinks. But I think it's the only way for change to happen.

We have to do bigger room clean outs a few times a year, too, but keeping on top of things daily has made a giant difference and has taught DS16 some much needed skills. He still has some bad habits, but he's developing some good ones.

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2 minutes ago, EKS said:

When I was a teenager I did this exact thing, and the only need it was meeting was my need for laziness.

I really think this is the case with her.  She just doesn't put much effort into things, even things she wants, pretty much across the board.  She's always been like this.  She generally seems to need external motivation to make things happen.  Sometimes I see a smidge of internal motivation, but that generally isn't enough at this point to make the thing she wants actually happen.  I'm guessing personality-wise she's what author Gretchen Rubin calls an Obliger, who is more motivated by external expectations and motivation than internal ones.  

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1 hour ago, caedmyn said:

I have spent quite a bit of time trying to give her tools.  She generally chooses not to use them, so yes, at that point it becomes a motivation issue and consequences or incentives are the only way I know of to motivate, since talking is generally ineffective as a motivator with my kids.  This is a kid who would probably shower twice a month if I didn't tell her (about once a week, after reminding her a few times to shower) that her tablet will be blocked til she takes a shower.  This is a kid who's had a red crusty thing going on around her eyes for a good year and just will not consistently do what both the doctors we've seen for it recommend, which is put antibiotic ointment on 2x/day.  I have tried reminders, motivators, asking her what she can do to help herself remember, suggestions when she can't/won't come up with anything, etc.  At some point she just has to want to, and I'm not willing to have my carpet ruined while I wait for her to develop that on her own.

Then the tools and systems you’re giving her are ones that work for YOUR brain and not hers. This isn’t about lazy, it’s about what works FOR HER not for you. 

There are people who are visual & who need to see their things to remember they exist. There are people who need cleaning to be in big categories so it’s just as easy to put stuff away than not. People like that need open shelving, easy bins to toss things in, easy hooks to toss things on. I guarantee if she’s the type of person who takes things off hangers and drags them out into the floor so she can look at them while she’s planning tomorrow, she needs open to see things. 

So give her easy & open. Hang vertical storage on the wall. Use hooks or a valet thing or a  cube organizer so she can have things out where she can see them and not away where she cannot. Put HUGE labels on bins or drawers so her brain learns where stuff goes that isn’t visible. 
 

If you’re the type of good organizer who likes everything away and doors and closets closed, it won’t look good to you, it will be visually cluttered instead of minimal.  It doesn’t matter. She’ll be capable of managing it herself. 
 

Once she has a system that works for her brain if she’s still putting tomorrow’s clothes on the floor I’d get rid of the cat. 
 

ETA: my DH is like this.  I spent the first two years of our marriage cleaning up after him. He would actively UNDO all of my organizating, pull everything out of cabinets, leave all cabinet doors and drawers open. He’s brilliant and amazing at problem solving and I’ve had more than one of his bosses tell me how much they adore him but it. Drove. Me. Crazy.

I got over it by reading everything I could about ADHD and organizing for people with it. His brain doesn’t work like that. It’s not his fault. I changed my system. I used the “guest” bathroom so I could keep it pretty. I put up open shelving and took out cabinets. His spaces will never look like a magazine but when it’s just as easy for him to put things back he does. And now half my kids are just like that. Seriously, go binge watch the video I posted above and EVERY video Cass has on butterfly organization style. It works. And not just for me, she just got a second season on HGTV. 

Edited by Katy
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9 minutes ago, caedmyn said:

I really think this is the case with her.  She just doesn't put much effort into things, even things she wants, pretty much across the board.  She's always been like this.  She generally seems to need external motivation to make things happen.  Sometimes I see a smidge of internal motivation, but that generally isn't enough at this point to make the thing she wants actually happen.  I'm guessing personality-wise she's what author Gretchen Rubin calls an Obliger, who is more motivated by external expectations and motivation than internal ones.  

I think all of us do respond to outside incentives quite a lot -- the idea that internal motivation is the biggest driver is a bit of a fallacy. 

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Just posting again because my eta was so long I should have made a new post. Cannot figure out cutting & pasting on my phone right now so I didn’t. Please read the ETA anyway. 

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I have 2 kids who are like this.  Eventually I just had to let it go.  In your case I would do the following.  Stop doing her laundry.  Give her a day that is hers to do her laundry.  If she does it great, if not it is not your problem.  If she doesn't have clean uniform to wear, too bad.  As for the cat peeing on the carpet, buy a carpet cleaner.  Every time the cat pees she has to clean the carpets in her room.  Sit on her bed and read a book while she does it.  Maybe all the extra work will motivate her to keep things tidier.  It wouldn't with my kids but that is where I would start.  

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1 hour ago, caedmyn said:

They stink.  "Want to" is definitely an issue here, as I'm good at organizing and spend a few hours 3-4 times a year helping her organize and declutter her room, and she simply won't bother to put stuff away rather than dumping it on the floor or nearest horizontal surface.

Helping her organize her room once a quarter isn't helping her.  How does she do with a list of tasks?  make them easy, break down the steps.  Pick up clothes, hang up clean clothes/dirty clothes in basket.  pick up trash and throw it away.  etc.

make it easy to put stuff away - get rid of extraneous stuff.  minimize 'details'.  closet organizers, plenty of drawers and shelves.  shoe racks, hooks for necklaces, scarves, etc. 

1 hour ago, caedmyn said:

And in the mean time I should just ignore the fact that the carpet may be ruined?  

so rip up the carpet, and put down a vinyl floor in her bedroom.  there are some cheap ones that look like wood planks.

you decide, which is more important to you?  the carpet?  or your relationship with your daughter?  (because now is when you are setting up what it's going to be like when she's an independent adult.)

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8 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I think all of us do respond to outside incentives quite a lot -- the idea that internal motivation is the biggest driver is a bit of a fallacy. 

PDA kids do not respond to incentives of any kind.   Of course, adults try to "entice" them, which only makes things worse.

1 minute ago, Plateau Mama said:

I have 2 kids who are like this.  Eventually I just had to let it go.  In your case I would do the following.  Stop doing her laundry.  Give her a day that is hers to do her laundry.  If she does it great, if not it is not your problem.  If she doesn't have clean uniform to wear, too bad.  As for the cat peeing on the carpet, buy a carpet cleaner.  Every time the cat pees she has to clean the carpets in her room.  Sit on her bed and read a book while she does it.  Maybe all the extra work will motivate her to keep things tidier.  It wouldn't with my kids but that is where I would start.  

I have two like this too.   One owns their own home, and hired a (ruthless) sibling to help dejunk it.    

The other one *knows* how to clean - I've seen the evidence.  Just doesn't want to.  As along as it doesn't impact me - they're the one that has to live with it.

My mother was this way - I regularly cleaned the house while I was growing  up - because I couldn't stand it.  Half the time I really didn't know what I was doing, because no one taught me.   She'd definitely developed exec function issues, as she became very easily overwhelmed.  There were times when she was older, and I was helping her - I'd break it down in steps so she could focus.

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1 hour ago, JFSinIL said:

 

Meanwhile I like the idea of a clothes horse/coat stand thing she can toss stuff on instead of the arduous task of opening a closet door and using a hanger.

we got rid of the closet doors for kids bedrooms because we wanted to replace them.   2ds is still complaining because he hangs stuff on them.

 

6 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

What does PDA mean? 

Pathological demand avoidant.  It's a subtype of autism.

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Just now, gardenmom5 said:

Pathological demand avoidant.  It's a subtype of autism.

Ah, I see. I definitely don't have kids like that, and I don't think all non-neurotypical kids are like that. But I absolutely believe it's a real thing!! 

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Just now, Not_a_Number said:

Ah, I see. I definitely don't have kids like that, and I don't think all non-neurotypical kids are like that. But I absolutely believe it's a real thing!! 

No they're not.  Not even all ASD kids are like that - I did state it's a *subtype* of ASD.   ALL PDA kids have ASD, but not all ASD kids have PDA.  it's like - all squares are rectangles, but not all rectangles are squares.  A child, NT or not, who is feeling overwhelmed - will not respond to "incentives"., no matter how much they may want the item because they're already feeling overwhelmed.

But I've dealt with school admins (and doctors ...) who treated him like a kid that would respond to incentives . . . . . . and the threats, and attempts to punish, and intimidate when the kid wouldn't  do what they want.  (if he doesn't do ___, he can't go on this wonderful field trip.  well, great.  you just gave him a reason to NOT do ___.)   ya know what?  the adult was never the one with the power, and they've surrendered the war and displayed how utterly powerless they really were.  I pick my battles.  

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1 hour ago, EKS said:

When I was a teenager I did this exact thing, and the only need it was meeting was my need for laziness.

So, the question is how to meet the need to conserve one's energy in regard to the task that doesn't involve floor/cat pee. 

I like the chair idea. 

I loathe children being written off by others as 'lazy'.

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8 minutes ago, gardenmom5 said:

No they're not.  Not even all ASD kids are like that - I did state it's a *subtype* of ASD.   ALL PDA kids have ASD, but not all ASD kids have PDA.  it's like - all squares are rectangles, but not all rectangles are squares.  A child, NT or not, who is feeling overwhelmed - will not respond to "incentives"., no matter how much they may want the item because they're already feeling overwhelmed.

But I've dealt with school admins (and doctors ...) who treated him like a kid that would respond to incentives . . . . . . and the threats, and attempts to punish, and intimidate when the kid wouldn't  do what they want.  (if he doesn't do ___, he can't go on this wonderful field trip.  well, great.  you just gave him a reason to NOT do ___.)   ya know what?  the adult was never the one with the power, and they've surrendered the war and displayed how utterly powerless they really were.  I pick my battles.  

Yeah, you gotta know what works and what doesn't. It seems really stupid to set consequences if it does nothing!! 

The OP does say that her kids responds to incentives better than to other things, though... and I know my kids do, too, unfortunately. (I'd rather they responded to other stuff, lol, because I don't like setting consequences. But they are what works here.) 

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1 hour ago, gardenmom5 said:

 

you decide, which is more important to you?  the carpet?  or your relationship with your daughter?  (because now is when you are setting up what it's going to be like when she's an independent adult.)

I don't think this is an either-or issue, where I have to choose between the carpet and a good relationship with her.  I actually have a pretty good relationship with her, and generally manage to find ways to motivate her or say what needs to be said without damaging the relationship (and yes, I let a lot of things go also).

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When my  oldest was 15. I stopped telling her how to fix these kinds of problems. I (tried to) stop fussing about her disgusting room, etc.

What I did do was to present things to her as a problem and walk her through the problem solving process. This has to stop being about "You're such a lazy slob, it literally takes 30 seconds to hang up a shirt, do you like having your clothes peed on? This is ridiculous...etc." (no judgement from me; similar words have come from my mouth)

It is more of a

"Sweetie, this is a real problem. I know you don't like having your clothing peed on. That's really rotten. What are some ideas of how to fix this? Would it be easier to hang clothes on a hook? What about laying them on a chair? Any other ideas?"

And then listen.

Her solution may not be your ideal. You (just like me) would prefer all clothing on hangers or in drawers, tidily contained in little containers and invisible. But this is *her* solution not yours and to make it effective in solving the real problem (cat pee) the solution has to have her buy in. 

Now, that's not to say that when she gets the clothing hooks or bins or whatever she will automatically start using them as needed. You probably will need to do an evening walk through and help her build the habit of hanging things up out of the floor. But the more you make her do it, the more likely the solution will stick in HER brain. 

Edited by fairfarmhand
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Meant to add:

My ds sounds similar to your dd, but we don't have a cat. He drops his clothes in the middle of the floor. I started putting a laundry basket right in that spot and most of the time he drops his clothing in the basket. And that's what I've accepted as reasonable. The clothes are in the basket. Maybe one day, I'll start moving it 6 inches a week toward a corner.

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1 minute ago, fairfarmhand said:

"You're such a lazy slob, it literally takes 30 seconds to hang up a shirt, do you like having your clothes peed on? This is ridiculous...etc."

I have to say, this was about my mom's approach -- she's not winning any parenting awards, let me tell you. And there are STILL things that I feel reluctant to do, because I have them SO associated with scorn and contempt instead of self-care. Nowadays, I even kind of want to do them, but I have strong negative associations with them. 

(Now, I wasn't having my clothing peed on. But I did do stupid stuff. Teens do.) 

Edited by Not_a_Number
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Okay, someone has to say it and it might as well be me.

What's with all the suggestions to "get rid of" the cat? He's not a piece of furniture. He's a living creature with the ability to experience stress, fear, and feelings of abandonment. It's very much not his fault another family member is leaving her stuff on the floor for him to pee on. 

Whatever the best solution is, I can't imagine it involves "getting rid of" a member of the family. 

[Steps off soapbox.]

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