Dear Annie: 12 year old girl is a real slut and doesn’t know the definition of cleaning up after herself

DEAR ANNIE: I’ve been reading your column for a while and now I have a situation of my own. I hope you can help me. I have been with my girlfriend for 10 months and I am ready to propose very soon. We get along pretty well, make each other laugh, build each other up and communicate well too, so things couldn’t be better. The only problem is that her 12 year old daughter is a total slob and doesn’t know the definition of cleaning up after herself.

She constantly leaves clothes, toys, and fake nails strewn around the house, and it makes no difference whether her mother is asking her nicely or really picking on her. You can’t make her clean up after herself and, even beyond that, make her do chores in general. At first I had thought of suggesting an allowance, but I don’t think there’s an amount of money that would motivate this girl to do anything (besides, her mom isn’t exactly in a situation financial institution to distribute money on a regular basis). She’s a girl whose mother legitimately offered her a $100 bill to do the dishes, and she wouldn’t. His mother and I were informed by his son that his sister had made the comment that she “doesn’t want to have to work for this”.

All in all, she’s a good girl. Her mother receives good reports about her when she spends the night with friends; she and I get along well; and she is great with my family and babysits well for my brother and sister-in-law, but at home we can’t motivate her to do anything when it comes to cleaning and chores – – and then she has the nerve to wonder why her mother goes crazy with her sometimes. Needless to say, her mother is extremely frustrated and lost. The problem for me is that we want to move in together, but I’ve told him before that I don’t want or need his daughter trashing the house I live in. What do we do ? — Take care of a little pig

DEAR LITTLE PIG: I can certainly understand where your girlfriend and mutual frustration is coming from. This young girl’s behavior is simply unacceptable and, now approaching adolescence, it’s time for her to face the music whether she likes it or not.

Since money doesn’t seem to be a motivation, maybe it’s time to take the things that matter to her away from her – like going to her friends’ house for sleepovers or for some extracurriculars – until she begins to contribute to the house. If we all put off the things we didn’t want to face, nothing would ever get done. This will show him that we cannot do the things we want unless we also make time for the things we need to do.

And on that subject of the future, now might also be a good time to talk to your girlfriend about what being a stepdad will look like and the limitations that might come with this new role. It sounds like you have a strong relationship and have a good connection with his kids, so you should be able to work things out.

“How can I forgive my cheating partner?” is out now! Annie Lane’s second anthology – featuring her favorite columns on marriage, infidelity, communication and reconciliation – is available in paperback and ebook form. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information.

Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected]

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