Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Should be stepson be accountable for his own hygiene?

Ok strange question, but he is 6 years old. At home, he washes his hands before and after meals, after using the bathroom, after helping with chores, or coming in from playing outside without being asked. He brushes his teeth, showers, washes his face, and the like without being asked at home. At his mom's house, he doesn't do any of those things and she doesn't enforce him doing so either. We have talked and talked and talked to her about it, but it makes no impact. He comes home filthy almost everytime. Should we hold him accountable since we know he can do it? Or at the age of 6 should he have enough reminders and supervision that she should get the brunt of it?


Asked by Mom1Stepmom1 at 11:57 AM on Jul. 14, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 14 (1,498 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (8)
  • No, he's just a little boy. He does it at your home because those are the rules, obviously there are no such rules at his moms house. She is accountable in her home, even when he's 16, he's still a child. Just keep enforcing the rules at your house and hope that it trickles over into the rest of his life.

    Answer by slw123 at 2:56 PM on Jul. 14, 2008

  • He's six! He does those thing at home with you because he knows he has to it's the rules. He's not doing them there, because as you have pointed out his Mom doesn't enforce it....

    Honestly, I'm sure you don't have to nag him about doing it, but I also know that's because he knows he just have too...and if he doesn't time to time (which I'm sure there are times he forget) you are there to remind him, and make sure he does it.

    Answer by SAHMinIL at 12:10 PM on Jul. 14, 2008

  • I am a mom and a stepmom too. I don't think its your place to enforce his habits when he's with his mother. I was also a bit surprised that you wrote, "We have talked and talked and talked to her about it". You said "We" and I don't think its your place to instruct the child's mother on what to do on her time. If he comes back dirty and you don't like it, put him in the bath. Some people just let kids play and get dirtier in the summer. I would be upset if my ex got with someone who critiqued my parenting - no wait, not upset, irate.

    As far as age: no, a six year old can't be held accountable for much and they need constant reminders, especially since this sux year old has to remember two different sets of guidelines.

    I don't mean to sound harsh, its just my opinion

    Answer by Gotoyourmoms at 12:12 PM on Jul. 14, 2008

  • Gotoyourmoms-no cause for concern on sounding harsh. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions and thats kinda what forums are for. We is actually my husband and her own boyfriend. She asks my opinion because she herself has said that excepting biology, I am the child's mother. I think she honestly sees me more as his mother than herself. She left when he was quite young and then didn't see or talk to him for nearly two years. It wasn't until about 2 years ago that she even was involved and she has been doing court ordered overnights for about 18 months now. He is nearing 7. I only discuss things with her when she directs questions toward me. If she asks my opinion, I give it. The boyfriend says that he can't be repsonsible for everything in her life, including her son. He has talked to my husband about leaving her because of the way he treats her son. Not to get defensive, just giving a bit of background regarding the whole situation.

    Answer by Mom1Stepmom1 at 12:44 PM on Jul. 14, 2008

  • no I dont think he should be held responsible. He is probably going through alot with the whole situation. All that matters is that he abides by the rules in your home when he is there. If he comes home dirty just tell him to go wash up. Good Luck with everything :)

    Answer by MommyMel03 at 2:10 PM on Jul. 14, 2008

  • I don't mean to get side tracked here but I have big issues with a 6 yr old showering himself. It sounds like a burn accident waiting to happen. I've had 13 yr old boys who were incapable of taking a proper shower without being checked. Perhaps your expectations are too high and Moms are too low. Meet in the middle. As always.IMO

    Answer by GrnEyedGrandma at 3:31 PM on Jul. 14, 2008

  • Hey ladies, I'm a mom and a step-mom too! Gotoyourmoms, you hit the nail on the head! The child is confused! He has rules and boundaries in one setting and none in the other. BOY oh BOY can I relate. It drove me crazy! Really Mom1Stepmom1 you need to cut some slack to the boy, let him know your expectations, but you can't hold him totally responsible, nor can you tell another parent how to run their household; however wrong they may be. This is where your maturity comes into play. You have contol with only what goes on in your home. Period. Good luck, also one more piece of advice from experience..let his father do the talking to the other is in actuality their son. IMHO

    Answer by s.c.a.r.l.e.t. at 3:42 PM on Jul. 14, 2008

  • a 13 year old that cant shower without help? does he/she have a mental or physical disability? son has been showering himself very well since he was six....

    Answer by LoriaAnn at 5:27 PM on Jul. 14, 2008