You are here

Hygiene help!

SMM's picture

I've never came to an online group before for advice nor do I normally talk to strangers about my business but here we are.... I thank you all in advanced.

A little background: my step daughter is 14. I've been in her life for a little over 2 years now. We get along great (considering the raging hormones) and infact, she tells me more than both parents. I also see her more than either of them do due to the fact I work from home.
I can appreciate the "things kids do/don't do" but I've been struggling with a few things and I need advice on how I can do better or better guide her.
The current issue is personal hygiene - specifically mensutal related hygiene. I am not a clean freak but I do have certain standards.
Once the 3 of us started living together the bad habits started to become noticeable. - I had to teach her the habit of washing her hands after using the bathroom (#1 & #2) I hit my breaking point when she used the bathroom, changed her pad, did not wash her hands (you can easily hear the skin) and then put her hands in a communal bag of popcorn... then denied it despite actively chewing popcorn.
The other menstrual related issue is accidents.... I've lost count of how many bloody pairs of underwear I have found on her bathroom floor, blood on our newly installed carpet, as well as accidents on her bedding. I've shown her the proper way to clean her clothes should she have an accident and let her know I am here should she need help but I just found 3 pairs of bloody unders in her bathroom so all of my efforts this far haven't resolved anything. Her father had talked to her and he's also asked her mother to talk to her about these things a few times but it just so happens to work out that she's always on her period when she's at our house so her mother's response is "we don't have those issues at my house". She is really no help as she does her best to try to make living with her more appealing to try and sway the daughter to living with her full time.

I am tired of being the nag. It's not fun for either of us and her father doesn't like to get into it and now thinks I should check her bathroom daily and whenever it happens that she's to scrub her bathroom floor. I'm not sure what this will achieve except for resentment towards us for making her clean...



Lemon65's picture

Oh boy...I don't have any advice, but I am absolutely dreading the day that SD gets her first period. Then I am sure I will have plenty of advice! I am mostly afraid that no one will teach her not to flush pads or tampons down the toilet, since I had roommates in college who thought that was the proper way to dispose of them which led to severe plumbing issues in our dorm.

Survivingstephell's picture

She's 14 so I would be a bit more direct with the questions.  Did you mother teach you to act like this?? Does your mother think if you act like this over here we will kick you  out and she will get more $$CS for you??  You won't see a dime of it.  

DH had to tell SD18 this as she got older.  Started around 14 with the truth about her mother.  Fortunetly SD was smart enough to see through her mother's games and didn't get sucked in with the PAS campaign and I was lucky she didn't have hygiene issues.  

Another thing that I have seen work wonders is having DAD deal with all of it.  You do nothing and make HIM clean up any messes, do her laundry, what ever needs to be done.  Just because you are the woman does not mean you automatically get to deal with it.  

Anyway to change visitation so mom gets the bloody week??? 

MoominMama's picture

I could have written this. Also BM's reply. Trying to address the issue caused no end of trouble with SD and BM. It ended in her moving out (she lived with us) and accusing DH of emotional abuse for trying to get her to clean up her act. He has no contact with her now.

So, you can go ahead and try to tackle this but be warned, it probably wont improve and he may become alienated from his daughter. 

Its hard to live with these low standards of hygiene. They dont like it when you basically tell them they are skanky, become angry and vindictive. Maybe im wrong and things will be different for you, but it all sounds identical to what we experienced.