You Bet I’m A Nag!


So with all the anger and resentment the kids had over the holidays with ex and his family, I listened to them patiently and tried to help them to heal without getting in the middle of the ruckus.  I gave them a wide berth, but insisted on still eating meals together and talking when needed.  But after 2 weeks of vacation for them and feeling like an overworked, cattle prodded maid, I snapped.

After them doing nothing for a long time, the nag had crept in slowly, but then with more stamina, as I nagged to remind them to clean up their rooms, to put their clothes away and to do little things that needed to be done – along with gentle reminders to go to bed at a decent time, to get up at a decent time and yoo hoo – let me remind you that the party is over, and school routine has begun again.

They yessed me repeatedly, but I saw very little signs of movement in the right direction. Video games reigned supreme as did gym time.  Then it seemed every time I sat down I heard Mom, what’s there to eat?  But after all, I am still the queen of this home and although we’ve made it a semi-democracy, I’m still the almighty mom to be obeyed and I was beginning to feel especially disrespected.  I mean, come on!  Take the boxes from the Christmas gifts to the recycling please.  Just once, could you please see if the dishwasher may need emptying?  Or when the garbage bag is filled, don’t you want to take it outside to the garbage can???  Ok, I know you don’t want to take it out, but can’t you?  Why am I being the only worker bee here in our hive?

So, I lost it like I hadn’t lost it in a long time.  I didn’t raise my voice because that’s when they tune you out.  At least that’s what my kids do when I yell.  So I got quiet and spoke in serious tone and laid it on the line.

I hate being the nag and I hate hearing myself nag.  Do what you are supposed to do without being asked twice please and we won’t hear any more nagging.  You are mad at your dad and his family, but I feel like you’re taking it out on me.  Are you mad at me?  (They shook their heads no.)  Then don’t act this way.  Be responsible.  Let’s work together …and so on and so forth.

Lucky for me, even though they didn’t want to talk, they listened as I talked.  As I began to ask questions that required more than a yes/no answer, they opened up more until peace began to bridge the chasm between us.  And it happened just in time too, because I was feeling angrier daily myself.  I mean, there’s only so much anger towards ex/his family that you can listen to, especially when it’s followed by their forgiveness when financially ex/his family do something nice for the kids so they feel indebted.

Have I ever told you how much I wish I would win the lottery and not be financially tied to my ex?  So far, that fantasy hasn’t come through for me….yet! 🙂  But oh la la…when it does! 🙂  In the meantime, the photo made me laugh and since a nag is an old horse, I hoped you might get a kick out of it too!  Pun intended.

Thanks for reading my venting.  Please let me know if you have ever felt this way too?

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16 Responses to You Bet I’m A Nag!

  1. bone&silver says:

    OMG, with you all the way!! They say ‘Yes’, but they don’t move- how universally ‘teenage’ is that?? Drives me CRAZEEEEEE. I’m hearing you loud and clear and nodding my head hard- except I do raise my voice I admit… : / G

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Create Space says:

    To answer your question…I can sum it up Janie in a few words…’all the time’!! But it gets better with continued effort, treating them as equals and as adults and insisting on respect. You did a great job!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kim Smyth says:

    Don’t give in and keep up the good work or like one of mine we never got through to, they I’ll not be able to function in the real world.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. TJ Fox says:

    When OC was still here, it was a non-stop battle to get him to do the barest of things and no amount of nagging, bribing or punishment moved him. MC and BG tend to be pretty good about doing things, but every once in a while I have to step in. It helped loads when, years ago, we set up a chore schedule that rotated weekly. That morphed into allowing them to pick which chores they were willing to do on top of their regular responsibilities (laundry and keeping their space clean). Since it was something they agreed to, it seemed to work better than the assigned chores. Now, for the most part, they do what they know they have to do. Though they will drag their feet on the dishes, they know they need to be done before Hubby gets home.

    I don’t know if it is just because those two are so self motivated or if it is the way we have handled chores, but we don’t often have those battles. Seeing how OC was, I have to think that a big part of it is personality. I also kind of think that part of our lack of battles is because of OC, that MC and BG want as much distance between them and OC as possible so they don’t want to have those same behaviors.

    Liked by 1 person

    • janieleeds says:

      Excellent parenting TJ! I think it’s personality too and our involvement with them. I find that chores when chosen is the route to go to get the most out of them and that when the chores rotates, that frames it as part of being in a family. We all take turns. Good for you!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I find that swearing helps! Lol – I have 2 teens now and I have resisted swearing their whole lives, however they know that when it starts I am at my wits’ end! (And they are scared. As they should be.) Single parents have it bloody hard. The least we can do is vent!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I had a similar rant last week. I think sometimes it can actually help them to release a few feelings of their own. Everything has been much easier since.


    • janieleeds says:

      I had the same outcome as well! It cleared the air and when we do it right, it allows us all to feel as if we’ve been heard. And isn’t that what communication is all about? So glad things are easier for you! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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