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When to step back

(37 Posts)
tanith Thu 05-Dec-19 12:10:43

Talking to my daughter this morning about how she’s sick and worn out of nagging/arguing with her nearly 15yr old to shower/wash her hair. She says she’s stepped back and will see how long it goes without her taking a shower. Needless to say she has clean clothes every day but still needs to shower, it’s causing Mum and daughter to argue. It’s odd because my GD has often commented that one of her school friends smells awful, you’d think she’d want to make sure it didn’t happen to her.

When’s the right time to leave your teen to take responsibility for their own ablutions? My daughter has had to nag and nag to get her to shower. 2/3 times a week she even helps her wash her very long hair but is it time to just leave her to it? I can’t even remember that far back and don’t remember nagging my 3 to wash.

I’ll be interested in others take on this.

Urmstongran Thu 05-Dec-19 12:14:12

Might the girl be depressed? Are there any red flags?

I suppose your daughter could try just a chat with her (not a nag) and ask her what’s going on here?

FlexibleFriend Thu 05-Dec-19 12:21:49

Once my sons hit puberty I couldn't keep them out of the shower, girls should be the same.

Fennel Thu 05-Dec-19 12:22:24

We've got 2 daughters - I can't remember any hygiene problems, though we only had one bathroom for 6 of us, no shower.
At 15, I would think the main thing to be particular about is during menstruation. If they're dealing with that ok, ignore the rest.

Hetty58 Thu 05-Dec-19 12:23:27

My lot were always hogging the bathroom. Mind you, my grandson hates morning showers so has them before bed. Is your daughter's bathroom warm and welcoming enough? If not, I'd recommend a heated floor and shower radio.

I think, at nearly 15, she should be left to get on with it (within reason) but I'd comment if I noticed any body odour!

tanith Thu 05-Dec-19 12:26:26

Nothing going on my daughter has sat and chatted with her calmly about taking care of her bathing etc, no reminding needed to brush teeth/braces she’s very good at taking care of her teeth it’s just getting her to stop whatever she’s doing to go shower. No she isn’t depressed.

tanith Thu 05-Dec-19 12:28:40

Thanks everyone, GD hasn’t got her periods yet, late like her Mum and we will definitely be commenting if there is any body odour. Just interested in others experiences.

MerylStreep Thu 05-Dec-19 12:35:48

Tanith
I know we've got one of those coming down the line: my grandaughter. But, her mother was the same although thank god she got better as she got older (20s)
I have no answers. If I did I'd use them on my own grandaughter ☹️

annodomini Thu 05-Dec-19 12:37:43

It sounds as if she is being deliberately bolshi which is not unusual in teens of either sex. My youngest GS, now 12, has been really sweaty for some time and, like his brother and cousins, is going through puberty early. I wonder if your GD is concerned that she hasn't reached menarche yet as she will be aware that most of her friends have periods.

wildswan16 Thu 05-Dec-19 12:38:41

I would totally drop the subject. It is probably more a case of "I'm fed up with mum telling me how to look after myself".

Obviously if her parents were worried she was depressed or unhappy then that would be different.

annodomini Thu 05-Dec-19 12:41:20

PS I should add that youngest GS loves to be given male toiletries and is now generally as fresh as a daisy. However, if your GD receives lots of toiletries for Christmas, she might feel she is being 'got at'. You might care to ask her to make a list of 'stocking fillers' she would like and be very grateful if nice 'smellies' are mentioned.

Sussexborn Thu 05-Dec-19 12:57:16

Random thought! Does the bathroom have a full length mirror. Had one in a hotel recently and I didn’t like it at all.

hazel93 Thu 05-Dec-19 13:01:00

How very strange. Of all the turbulent times in the teenage years hygiene was never a problem -quite the opposite in fact.
As you seem sure there is no underlying problem I would leave her to it.
If it gets to the point of being offensive I am in no doubt her close friends will let her know !

Hetty58 Thu 05-Dec-19 13:01:18

Tanith, the 'getting her to stop whatever she’s doing' I'm very familiar with! Sometimes, that involves setting a time limit, confiscating the mobile - even turning off the electricity at the mains!

Hetty58 Thu 05-Dec-19 13:07:20

My grandson's personal hygiene and time spent in the bathroom went from average to excessive, all of a sudden. I then wondered whether he had a girlfriend. Yes, he did, and a couple of years older, too. His friends were most impressed!

TrendyNannie6 Thu 05-Dec-19 13:09:40

If not depressed. Then I would think she’s probably going through a stage of I will do whatever whenever .

tanith Thu 05-Dec-19 13:13:32

Thanks everyone, there is no full length mirror in the bathroom lol. I’m going to let my daughter deal with it how she feels is best unless there is a ‘niff’ in the air 🤣

MissAdventure Thu 05-Dec-19 13:30:42

I've known a few teens who leave a bit to be desired in the hygiene department. (Girls and boys)

Trying to get my 12 year old in the bath is difficult, and has been for some time.

I'm hoping he'll grow out of it (the habit, not the bath!) like his older brother did, eventually.

endlessstrife Thu 05-Dec-19 13:44:25

She may have body issues which are exacerbated in the shower. I remember feeling a bit like that when I was a teenager. When she next mentions the friend who smells, respond with....” well, that’s why we need to shower everyday”. Hope it works out for you🤗

janeainsworth Thu 05-Dec-19 13:54:06

But do we need to shower every day?
When I was at school I had a bath once a week and a quick stand-up wash the rest of the time. I don’t think I was unusual either, and can only remember one girl in the entire school who smelled.

Some people consider that showering every day isn’t good for the skin and depletes the natural oils. Maybe your GD has read something like that on the internet, Tanith.

Has your DD asked GD why she doesn’t like showering? Would she have a bath instead?
At one time my skin used to itch horribly after a shower, until I started applying oil to my skin as soon as I was dry.
If I were your DD I would just let GD get on with it, unless she actually looked dirty or smelled!

MiniMoon Thu 05-Dec-19 13:55:38

My 13 yr old granddaughter needs reminding to shower and wash her hair. She's on the high functioning end of the autism spectrum, and is very scatterbrained and disorganised. She's already started her periods, and manages that we'll.
My daughter doesn't nag but does remind her about personal hygiene.
I'd be inclined to leave your granddaughter to her personal hygiene with the odd reminder now and then. As long as she isn't smelly, I think it's okay.

Urmstongran Thu 05-Dec-19 13:58:14

Could it be due to climate change worries - ie worrying about over consumption of water and electricity and buying those products such as plastic shower gels and shampoos?

Just a thought.

Cherrytree59 Thu 05-Dec-19 14:06:05

I agree with totally dropping the subject.
It is possible that she is teen trying to excert some control.

Your granddaughter is probably more than happy to shower etc but just wants to do so with out being told by mum.

Your daughter is choosing to pick her battles, very wise.

Lovely Adult bath/shower stuff, body lotions etc in xmas stocking??tchsmile

tanith Thu 05-Dec-19 14:22:35

Shower/bath either is available to her, my daughter is very conscious of the environment and tries to use solid soaps and cut down on the plastics, although GD does have nice toiletries for christmas birthdays . It’ll all right itself as time passes I’m sure.

Marilla Thu 05-Dec-19 16:48:18

I would definitely continue with not nagging to shower.
It’s very personal and there aren’t many things a fifteen year old has control over. She will become uncomfortable in not showering and washing her hair, but let her do it in her own time.
I also think parents may see the outward appearance as a reflection on their parenting. It isn’t. Just relax and let it go.

I have changed my mind on so many matters now that I am a Grandma!