John's Articles

Solution to Teens Leaving Clothes on Floor

Posted on 1/3/2023

Q: Getting my daughters, fifteen and thirteen, to pick up their clothes from the floors of their rooms requires constant nagging from me. I’m at my wit’s end. Please help me out with...

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Chores for 3-Year-Olds? Yes!

Posted on 5/31/2022

Q: In certain of your books as well as your newspaper column, you have written that children as young as three should be doing daily chores around the home. Exactly what chores are reasonable for...

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Don't Enable Entitled Teen

Posted on 4/19/2022

A recent online article concerned a mom who refused to pay her teenage daughter for doing household chores. A poll of readers found that an overwhelming majority of them agreed with the...

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On Chores, Discipline, Potty-Training

Posted on 3/29/2022

Q: When I give my 5-year-old daughter a chore, she does it, but all the while she is muttering under her breath, huffing and puffing, and so on. Do I discipline that behavior or just let her...

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In Defense of ‘Because I Said So'

Posted on 2/1/2022

Q: Concerning chores, another expert recommends giving a child a certain number of chips, like poker chips, every month and if he or she fails to do a chore or doesn’t do it properly, you take a...

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How To Help Your Child Get More Grit

Posted on 9/7/2021

It’s all over the web, that “grit” thing. Seems like every day, I get some promo for a webinar on how to get more grit, project more grit, or get in touch with your inner grit. So, allow me to...

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Keep It Simple With Your Kids During Quarantine

Posted on 4/14/2020

One website is titled “How to Cope with Kids During Coronavirus.” Another, featuring a staged photo of an obviously frazzled mom with a toddler on her lap, tells the reader that “Parents are...

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Let Your School-Aged Kids Dress Themselves

Posted on 1/9/2019

“So, anyway, after they take showers I lay out their school clothes for the next day. And then….” “Hold on right there,” “How old are your girls again?” “Um,...

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Car Gives Eric a Chance to Grow Up

Posted on 4/27/2018

"Dad! I've decided what kind of car I want to get when I'm 16! Look at this!" "Eric," I said, brushing away the copy of Car Trader he'd stuck in my face, "I've told you a hundred times, I'm not...

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Raising a Can-Do Kid

Posted on 3/2/2016

Can-do kids are make-do kids. They usually have several traits that distinguish them from dependent, underconfident children: <b>1. Resourcefulness</b> Today, resourcefulness may mean turning...

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Nicotine Use

Posted on 6/30/2015

Copyright 2015, John K. Rosemond Q: We just discovered that our 17-year-old is using nicotine. He tells us he’s been using for the past several months, smoking two to four cigarettes a...

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Should You Pay Your Child to Do Chores?

Posted on 5/5/2015

A major US newspaper recently ran a piece detailing all the ways children benefit from doing chores. Well, not all the ways. They failed to mention the most important benefit: chores, properly...

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Teens Want Later Curfews

Posted on 2/3/2015

Copyright 2015 John K. Rosemond Q: My twin boys just turned 13 and are demanding—that is the right word—later curfews. They tell us that their curfew, which is 8:30 on nights when there...

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Who cleans up?

Posted on 2/4/2014

Q: I have 3 kids ages 8, 6, and 4. I need help solving the "pick up the playroom" dilemma. When an area in which they've been playing needs to be picked up and straightened, the 8-year-old always...

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Their Biology Makes Them Do It!

Posted on 10/22/2013

The "their biology makes them do it!" hypothesis concerning the oft-horrid behavior of today's teens keeps on rolling along, charming parents of said teens into the comforting belief that...

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Kicking Out of the Garden of Eden [Explained]

Posted on 10/6/2013

Kicking the child out of the Garden of Eden John's "Garden of Eden" statement: Other Q and A or articles about this method may be searched by using the keyword "Garden" Below is detailed...

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Gifted ... With Laziness

Posted on 8/20/2013

Q: Our 9-year-old son Bobby is very intelligent and capable of doing good work in school when he wants to, but he is generally just downright lazy. As a result, he makes mediocre grades and we...

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Last Chance for Major Change

Posted on 2/5/2013

Q: Our 17-year-old is a highly spoiled underachiever. As a junior in high school, he's failing two classes and borderline in the rest. We know that his problems are largely due to our parenting...

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Adult Child: What to do?

Posted on 12/11/2012

Q: We have an adult child who doesn't want to grow up. She quit college after two years and moved across the country. As we anticipated, she's having difficulty supporting herself. In fact, she...

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Chores: Start Early

Posted on 8/21/2012

Q: I know you think children as young as 3 should be doing chores around the home. That seems awfully young, but can you recommend several age-appropriate chores I can try with my 3-and-one-half...

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Give Children What They Need and Little of What They Want

Posted on 11/22/2011

Respect children; don't idolize them A young mother who identified herself as a practitioner of "attachment parenting" recently told me that "children should be approached with reverence." I...

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Technology and Household Chores

Posted on 10/4/2011

Skip the app for children's chores Full disclosure in four parts: First, I am not a tech-savvy person and never intend to become one. Second, I am convinced that the less technology, the better...

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8-Year-Old Girl Not Completing Chores

Posted on 5/24/2011

Let children know you mean business Q: Our 8-year-old daughter has not been completing chores and following directions. On the morning of a recent soccer game, she failed to follow some simple...

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15 Resolutions For Parents

Posted on 1/4/2011

15 resolutions for parents Given that this is the first column of a new year, I'm proposing a number of parenting New Year's Resolutions for my readers to consider. The list is by no means...

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4-Year-Old Cleaning Room

Posted on 11/23/2010

Locked in her room Q: I don't require our 4-year-old to take a nap, but I do make her stay in her room for an hour after lunch. The problem is that while she's in there, she dismantles her...

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4-Year-Old Girl is Messy

Posted on 2/9/2010

It's always one step at a time with 4-year-olds Q. My 4-year-old is just plain messy. I expect her to help out around the house, and she does, but she rarely finishes a chore. If I ask her to...

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3-Year-Old Girl's Messy Room

Posted on 10/13/2009

A QUIET RIOT? HOW TO RECTIFY IT Q. Our 3-year-old daughter makes a complete mess of her room whenever we confine her there for misbehavior. She has very few accessible toys, but will take books...

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Back-To-School Tips for Parents

Posted on 9/8/2009

BACK-TO-SCHOOL TIPS FOR PARENTS Several teachers asked if I would reprint a column that first appeared about 10 years ago. The subject is my five top back-to-school tips for parents. Before...

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More Parents Saying Yes to No

Posted on 3/10/2009

A POSITIVE SIGN: MORE PARENTS SAYING 'YES' TO 'NO' While walking through one of my favorite discount stores the other day, I happened upon a scene that gave me hope for America's future. It was...

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Parenting 101: More Chores, Less Electronics

Posted on 12/2/2008

MORE CHORES, LESS TV GOOD FOR KIDS This is the conclusion of Parenting 101, a two-part overview of the fundamentals of parenting. We've established that parenting is about leadership and...

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7-Year-Old Girl Not Helping Around the House

Posted on 9/2/2008

GIVE HELPFUL SIS A 'VACATION' Q. My 7-year-old, Michelle, has a wonderful example in her 12-year-old sister, Emma. Emma is very helpful around the house. She even asks me if there's anything I...

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Children Not Putting Backpacks in Proper Place

Posted on 3/4/2008

PARENTS SHARE THEIR 3 STORIES OF 'TOUGH LOVE' TURNAROUNDS It's one thing to give advice on the rearing of children, which is what I do through this column. It's quite another to share...

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Children Help the Family with Chores and Baby-Sitting

Posted on 2/19/2008

HELP CHILD LEARN TO BE GOOD FAMILY CITIZEN Q. My older daughter is 12 years older than her sibling and is now baby-sitting for us. This is infrequent and usually after the baby's bedtime or...

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7-Year-Old Boy Homework Issues

Posted on 11/6/2007

GIVE SON THE FREEDOM TO SET HIS OWN HOMEWORK SCHEDULE Q: My 7-year-old second-grader would prefer to come home from school and play with his friend across the street. The rule in our home,...

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Solve The Problem Of Messy Rooms

Posted on 9/18/2007

It sometimes happens that questions on a certain topic come at me in a wave, as has a recent spate of parental pleas for a final solution to the perennial messy room - a child's, that is. My...

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Ways To Get Children To Pick Up Toys

Posted on 9/11/2007

3 WAYS TO GET CHILDREN TO PICK UP ALL THEIR TOYS Q. My children, ages 4 and 5, simply will not pick up their toys or books. I have reduced the number of toys, significantly, but they still...

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3-Year-Old Boy Has Fun With Chore

Posted on 8/21/2007

3-year-old has fun with chore Q. I have recently assigned dish washing in the evening to our 3-year-old. He's quite capable of doing the job, the only problem being that he gets easily...

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Too Big For Their Britches

Posted on 5/8/2007

HAVE YOU LET YOUR CHILDREN GET TOO BIG FOR THEIR BRITCHES? When I was a child, my parents found frequent reason to tell me that I was a small fish in a big pond. Sometimes, to keep me on my...

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Pay 12-Year-Old to Babysit?

Posted on 8/1/2006

Pay son to baby-sit? Q: Our 12-year-old son baby-sits his two sisters, ages 8 and 3. We are not sure whether we should pay him and, if so, the amount, or if we should expect him to perform this...

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7- and 9-Year-Old Household Chores

Posted on 7/25/2006

Chores on Sunday Q: My husband and I agree that our two girls, ages 7 and 9, should make their beds and keep their rooms clean, but I am for giving them Sunday off from chores, and he feels...

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Family Obligations

Posted on 3/28/2006

FAMILY OBLIGATIONS From the Department of Ironies Abounding: We live in the "Age of Rights." Women, children, every ethnic minority group, handicapped people, pets, barnyard animals, wild...

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Child Needs to be Family Team Player

Posted on 12/13/2005

YOUR CHILD'S MOST IMPORTANT 'TEAM' IS THE FAMILY A father recently told me one reason his 10-year-old son was active in a different sport every season was "he needs to learn how to be a...

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Paying Children for Chores and Treating Adults with Respect

Posted on 7/19/2005


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Parent Should Focus More on Manners Than Reading for 4-Year-Old

Posted on 3/1/2005

ABCS? PARENTS SHOULD FOCUS MORE ON P'S AND Q'S Through my Web site (, a mother recently asked my opinion of teaching her 4-year-old son to read. The child had not expressed...

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Children Should Fear Mom and Do Chores

Posted on 7/13/2004

DON'T BE YOUR CHILD'S DOORMAT I was just thinking Isn't it ironic? Part One: In my youth, the typical child was afraid of his mother - a mother, furthermore, who might never have spanked or...

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Siblings Create a Mess in Their Rooms

Posted on 2/24/2004

TOLERATE CREATIVE KIDS' MESSES Q: My husband and I have three boys, ages 4, 5, and 8. The two younger ones share a room that looks like "tornado alley." They color, play with Legos, tear up...

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4-Year-Old is Indulged and Coddled

Posted on 11/26/2002

Q: I don't have children of my own yet, but I'm expecting soon. My lack of parenting experience is central to a discussion between my husband and me concerning what his 4-year-old son from his...

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Allowances and Alternating Chores

Posted on 7/10/2001

GIVE KIDS CHORES TO LEARN, NOT TO EARN Q. Two questions: In a recent column, you encouraged the practice of children doing chores and advised that parents not pay for this work. Are you...

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Parents Disagree on Paying Children for Chores

Posted on 6/26/2001

KIDS SHOULD DO CHORES WITHOUT EXPECTING PAY Q. My husband and I disagree over paying children for chores. He feels that just as we get paid for doing our jobs, children should be paid for...

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9- and 12-Year-Old Don't Want to do Chores

Posted on 2/13/2001

NAGGING IS WRONG TACTIC IN CHORE WARS Q. Our 12-year-old son and 9-year-old daughter share animal chores on our family farm in the evenings. Every night we have to remind them, and they always...

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