How to make your teenage son take the garbage out!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAUsually the most happy and successful people have determination to attain objectives and goals. This is especially true for a teenage boy. But let’s be real, most teen boys aren’t always thrilled to remember to take the garbage out.

One mom says, “I don’t see any change. He forgot to take out the garbage last week and now it’s flowing out of the bin.”

It’s completely understandable when a parent is frustrated that their teen boy forgets to help out around the house.

But why is it so hard for him to remember?

A few questions parents can ask themselves are why did he forget? Was he having a bad day? What’s on his mind? Or maybe he just simply forgot. It wasn’t on his priority list. We all have a day or two like that. We need to be reminded or asked again.

But how can you motivate a teen boy about the garbage? Seems like an impossible task, BUT, it is doable if the parent reacts effectively.

There are a lot of ways a parents can solve a problem such as throwing the garbage out.

One thing not to say is, “He will never change. He is lazy.” This is not a good way to make the situation better.

Parents, who say this, are also saying that the way they parent will never change either and there is nothing else I can teach him. I’m stuck and he will be stuck too. So, the first thing to do is to adjust the parenting style, especially if it’s not working. A parent will see change if you learn how to appropriately set boundaries, respect him and have good expectations.

It is a good idea for parents to think about the ideal place or time to talk to your son about taking the garbage out or participating in other responsibilities around the house. Think about some effective ways to communicate the message to take the garbage out? As said in earlier posts, it’s a good idea to co-create an agreement about helping around the house.

A good place to discuss and collaborate about ideas would be a quiet room with little distractions, everyone is calm, non-judgmental, and open minded. These elements are needed to have an effective discussion.

While talking with your son, express the message that he is in the beginning stages of becoming a full adult and it’s important to take more responsibility. Helping around the house is a part of being an adult. This is an important message he needs to know.
He is an important part and you need his help.

Most people usually only listen to someone worth listening to or at least someone who doesn’t call them names. This includes teen boys. Don’t preach, don’t label, name call, blame, etc. Talk about the problem and how to solve it together.

About Steven Cessario (8 Posts)

Steven Cessario, founder of CT Youth Mentoring & Coaching and Teenagesons.com, is an expert mentor and coach for teen boys, committed to helping them develop life skills and achieving success. Steven has eight years of experience helping young people overcome difficult obstacles, and guiding them to successful avenues.


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  1. 1

    Yup,. it’s all about synergizing,. If the kid knows how important his role is, he will soon step up to the plate.