My 12 year old daughter has always struggled with completing tasks in a timely manner. It seems every night there is a discussion with her about getting simple things done that she is required to do (brush teeth, do homework etc.). When she does them she is very deliberate but very slow. She is a wonderful child and extremely bright, however, her inability to develop responsibility or ownership in taking care of herself is frustrating. Any thoughts?
Have you ever considered learning issues such as add? What you dedscribed explains my 12 yr old to a tee. She was diagnosed as add about a yr ago. She takes concerta once a day and it has helped her tremendously. Now mind you, this measure was only taken after trying everything else with her. I have fought over this with her school for about 3 yrs now. She is now in grade 7 and so far is doing great! She tells me that she can terll the difference when she has had her meds and when she has not, she says that the meds help her to focus better and with tutoring on the side, she npw understands her homework better. Puberty plays a big part in this as well. Sometimes if your hormornes are out of whack, you'll loose the ability to completely focus. If need be, take her to your doctor for a referral to a child psychologist. But only after he/she looks at her and determines that this isn't a major medical issue. Have you done this yet? If she does have a learning disability, then the school may have to provide her with a individual education plan (iep). They will have a psychologist through the school board test her and determine if she needs the extra help. Does she get enough sleep at night? Does she eat well? Does she eat the amount of food that she should be intaking to enable her body and brain to function? All of this plays an important part in her learning and being able to do her homework, chores, learning, etc. You will probably have to continue to remind her to do the stuff she is suppose to do until she actually starts remembering to do it. Using cue cards or a chore chart posted in a common area like the kitchen, her bedroom, the bathroom,etc may help her to become more independant. Have her check things off her chart after she has done each thing such as bathing, brushing hair/teeth, eating, doing homework/chores. Lots of praising from you and whomever else is a consistancy in her life will help as well. If she refuses to do anything, then there needs to a consequence put into place and she needs to follow that consequnce to your specifications. Consistancy is the key. Kids tend to do or not do things just to get attention. So make sure she has good attention. She may need to play some sort of sport or do some other activity that she is interested in, in order to help her concentrate better. It is a proven fact that if kids get the exercise they need daily, then they are able to concentrate better at school. I know from personal experience with my 10 yr old boy. If he doesn't get to run around and play, then he is much more difficult to handle and he doesn't listen as well. Could she possibly be doing this behaviour strictly for your attention? All you can do is take her to the doctors and go from there. I hope this helps you out a lot. Good luck! As parents to children, especially teens, we need all the help we can possibly get! If you have anymore questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to ask!
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