Monday, 1 July 2013

Moving Out.....!!

Be warned, this is a generalised piece of writing that mainly highlights the different priorities held by teenagers versus 'grown-ups'.

Over the last few months, in fact its probably more like a year, the eldest teenager aged 17 (18 this week), has been making lots of noises about wanting to move out and have 'independence'. Full blown independence. After initial thoughts of 'he won't cope without me', I decided it would be beneficial if a couple of basic pointers in 'living without mummy' were raised for teenagers heading out in to the big wide world. 

I do understand that 'independence' to a lot of teenagers means answering to no-one, drinking and partying and playing on the playstation / xbox all night long! (Definitely much more sensible to find their 'independence' under their own roof!). But independence, to us parents, obviously means and includes a lot more:

Please note: Practical lessons will probably be needed after reading.


The general consensus amongst teenagers seems to be that clothes are hung on the floor, directly where standing at the time of removal from the body. They disappear, usually during sleep in the daytime hours, and miraculously re-appear smelling clean and fresh, crease free (we'll cover ironing later) and placed in a nice order on a hanging rail in the wardrobe.  Shock and horror, its not a miracle, its your mother.

Clothes should be cleaned regularly using a washing machine.  (Separate lessons will need to be given on each individual model)  When clothes have been worn once, sometimes twice, they should be placed in a washing basket. This leaves the floor clear to walk freely without tripping or standing on something and breaking it. Underwear is a different case and should be placed in the dirty washing basket daily or as soon as it is removed from the body.

This applies to bedding too. It needs washing, drying and ironing, ideally weekly (I don't want to put too much pressure on too soon, so try for every 2 weeks to start). Be warned, if you have an overnight guest, bedding with a stench of unwashed feet and BO won't go down well and you probably won't get a return visit.

Ironing clean laundry is essential for looking smart. (Although, I understand that smart is not a priority at this age - independence is) You will need an ironing board and an iron - please note, the carpet will burn if you use the floor as the ironing board. 


I cannot possibly comment on cooking.  In fact, the eldest teenager has indeed tried to teach me a dish or two. So you're on your own with this one.  

Shopping though, is a weekly must. If only for essential foods like bread, butter and milk - staple foods do not include beer, vodka, cider or crisps. It costs money and you do have to go to the shop to pick your items and bring them home.  Again, as with the clothes, food does not put itself away. If a hangover prevents a weekly shop there are on-line resources via most supermarkets. See Money below about budgeting.

Sometimes, food goes mouldy.  You will need to do a regular check on items in the fridge that may well be past their best.  If there is any sign of green mould, it is time to remove it and put in the outside rubbish bin. (Eating food in this condition could cause a serious illness) You will have to ask neighbours about collection days for dustbins. 


If you don't clean, you get dust.  If you get dust you won't be able to see the TV screen well, which could result in a lost match on fifa. Hoovering the floors should be achieved at least twice a week (for the record, I hoover daily). This is when it is useful if the dirty clothes have been placed in the washing basket instead of hung on the floor. It gives a clear run and lessens the likelihood of items being sucked up by mistake.

Bathrooms need bleach as they are not self cleaning. The strange contraption sitting in its own holder behind the toilet is a toilet brush. This brush will remove any signs of use!! You will, I'm afraid, have to use a cloth and spray to clean the seating area, especially if used by any male friends. 


Parents: By the time sounds of moving out arise, hygiene should have kicked in. This usually comes at the same time as the aftershave / perfume appears.  It is generally a sure sign that love is in the air.  If love hasn't reared its ugly head by this time there is not a lot to do besides constant reminding that a body needs regular soap and water to get clean.


Budget, Budget, Budget.  Independence means you paying your way.  Your money is now needed for rent / mortgage and bills. Remember, no electricity means no fifa.  You will also need money for food, phone and petrol.

These things don't magically appear, they have to be paid for and if you don't pay for them a nasty man may come and take your things away. You will then have to go back home to your parents with your tail between your legs and state how much you miss and need them. (Parents: If this happens, hopefully by this stage, the teenagers will be a little less idle around the home and appreciation will be shown more readily than pre-independence)

Your dependence has now shifted......... to your job. 

If there is anything I have missed, let me know by using the comments box below or contact me boxes above.  When alls said and done, teenagers about to embark on this most exciting adventure, have so much to learn and although sometimes stressful and monotonous and depressing, it is also the best time of their lives. Enjoy every minute of it and grab every opportunity - this applies to both teenagers and 'grown-ups'.

And parents..........although its very tempting to rip the now empty bedroom out and make it your very own haven, smelling of fresh would probably be wise to wait. Sometimes they come back.  (I know I did but I came home as 3 - with a partner and a baby in tow)

As always............sent wiv love



  1. Brings back memories. I cried buckets when you left home.

  2. I remember. Maybe I should have stayed home forever, lol xxx


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