My teenage daughter has horrible hygiene: Advice?

My teenage daughter hates practicing good hygiene. She will run the water without actually showering. It’s obvious that she hasn’t showered, cos her towel’s dry, bath mat’s dry, soap hasn’t been used, & sometimes the shower is just bone dry!! I have caught her out on her lies, & now she tries to outsmart me by wetting the bath mat, wetting the shower, & wetting her hair down, then argue with me that she has showered. Lately, I’ve been confiscating her electronics, as punishment, cos all she wants to do is talk or play games online with her friends. We struggle with her never doing her laundry, brushing her teeth, washing her own dishes. She has been taught from an early age to be independent, do chores, help family & not rely on people to do everything for her. She’s already been diagnosed with depression/anxiety & is medicated, but I don’t know why she keeps doing this. I’m so depressed & frustrated at constantly repeating the same things to her multiple times a day. Her dad & I are separated but have a great connection; even he’s tried talking to her & supporting me. Nothings changed in months. Please, please help me. Much love

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So even being diagnosed and medicated may not be enough, she may need to be in therapy to help process the complex feelings that anxiety/depression can cause…

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I would suggest a therapist this all screams depression to me maybe its not the right medication maybe she needs it adjusted or just a different dosage

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I would make her a bath and wash her hair myself. I’d make her wash and brush her teeth in front of me if possible. I go through this with my young children (with teeth brushing.) Maybe her meds aren’t working? When my depression gets really bad I have trouble too😥 I pray for your family

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Once you get it done you can have…

Later
I’m taking this and either you can do A or do B
Ok once your done with B, you can have 30 mins.
30 mins later take it, once you do A, you can have 30 mins.

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Step one is to stop forcing her to do things that she doesn’t want to do. I promise you, punishing her for not showering is absolutely not going to help her or help ease her depression. Really try to be empathic, and understand that she doesn’t want to shower because of her mental state and forcing her to do it is driving her further away from it. I don’t have exact advice on what to do, but maybe try to relax a little? She doesn’t have to do it every day, or even every other day. Let her take her time. If you really want to go the extra step, create incentives for showering (bonus if it’s things that are known to help with depression).

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Also somtimes just listen to her talk, and hug her. Some kids love language is not what we expect

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I’m a grown adult and there’s some days self care is just not doable because of depression. Have her see a therapist or find a new med

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Id just explain to her she’s gona be the smelly kid at school, everything’s gona itch and thats gona suck to be her. Let her experience it she can figure it out :woman_shrugging: just be supportive and offer more therapy and stuff but sometimes kids just wana fight to fight. Give them the information they need to be educated and let them figure their shit out themselves and always offer support.

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depression for sure. i sometimes get in those moods myself. just be gentle with her and remind her.

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Start from the beginning. Start by talking to her. If you have a bath maybe try and entice her with that. Make her one every Sunday (Start with one a week and then increase from there) and pop some candles, bubbles and maybe a film on the ipad/tablet. Make it a relaxing atmosphere so that she doesn’t feel intimidated by it x

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“Her dad & I are separated but have a great connection”.

Bingo! She probably yearns for a 3-way connection, under the same roof. Marital strife leading to separation or divorce is devastating on children. Save her. You and your husband are the key. Since you already have “a great connection”, you can build on that. Don’t count on her being honest when you ask her if she understands the reason for the separation. She loves you both. She will tell you what she thinks you want to hear.

I’m speaking in general terms, without knowing if there was emotional or physical abuse going on, and, if so, to what extent.

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You can’t just give her medication in hopes that it’ll solve the issue on its own. Healing is a process, so, instead of telling her what she’s doing wrong all the time, be of emotional support and encourage her.

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Bath bombs and other fun self care bath things if possible. She sounds very depressed, and as someone with bad depression I understand how hard it can be to maintain simple things like this, but the self care stuff like bath bombs, candles/incense in the bathroom, bubble baths, herbal baths, etc make it easier to maintain because you can hype yourself up for some self care time

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Don’t get mad about it. She’s clearly depressed, medicated or not. She needs comfort. Try to pull her out of her depression first and watch her habits change. Offer things to do and try to keep her happy and out of the house. Don’t offer your opinion

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Don’t focus on what she isn’t doing focus on what she “is” doing and take some of the pressure off her.
The others are right it sounds a lot like depression, it doesn’t mean giving in and it doesn’t mean you don’t care, it means that you are her support, she is obviously struggling.

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Maybe needs a change of medication. Therapist

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Definitely get her with a counselor! That is depression. My husband struggles with the same thing to this day at 32 from when he was 12-14.

It has steadily gotten worse as hes gotten older. Try to heal her now if you can.

Thoughts are with you! It’s a family struggle and it’s not easy.

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My mom once sprayed my brother down with the garden hose🤷🤷

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I’d be sitting in that damn bathroom making sure she washed herself properly.

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Try taking her to the shop as a treat she gets to choose all her own soaps and shampoos sponges or face cloth. Little face mask etc… maybe by punishing her it’s made her feel like this. She’s a girl maybe just in need of a pamper. Just sit with her tell her it’s a daily routine you need to smell fresh .:see_no_evil::see_no_evil::revolving_hearts: xx

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Take her to see a homeless person who doesn’t have the ability to keep themselves clean and look after themselves the way she could and see if you likes how she will look in a short time. Otherwise I’m with Kylie and sit in there and watch her to make sure she cleans herself

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Maybe get the medication re-evaluated. Might need a different dosage or a change all together. But yes medication only helps so much she has to work on herself within as well. I’ve went through it and so did my daughter. Get with a counselor, sometimes you have to try a few different ones to find a good one for her. And most importantly TALK. talk about any and everything

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hey! when youre depressed you tend to not have any motivation to even shower or do anything at all!, i went through the same thing as a teen!!, she’ll shower when she wants to! xx

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Did it ever cross your mind that she might not want to be clean in order to keep someone away from her? Not saying this is why, but could use looking in to further. Perhaps someone is sexually abusing her and she thinks if she stinks and has poor hygiene they will not abuse her. I learned in training that that is why some kids have poor hygiene.

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Are you sure she isn’t on the spectrum and have sensory issues of not liking the feel of water and or toothbrush,My grandson who is also suffering depression and anxiety does this as well.

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She might feel like she has no control in her own life and this is something that she can control. Try talking to her about why she does what she does

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A depression and anxiety diagnosis I just the beginning. It takes awhile sometimes for the meds to be adjusted, and taken properly to work. Take her back to counseling. Good luck…:heart:

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Take it from someone who’s been depressed and suffered from anxiety. It’s hard for a person with this illness to find the motivation to do anything a person with this has basically just given up! Punishment will only push her further away and make the situation escalate. Is she actually taking her medication or is she flushing them/binning them? It sounds like they are not working, take her back to the doctor and get new ones prescriped. Take her to a counsellor or therapist. The only thing keeping her going right now is talking and playing with her friends online . Depression is a very long and tough battle. Try distract her with fun things to do , support her, guide her and love her hard. She will lack motivation, she will have outbursts . If she won’t open up to you hand her a few support numbers e.g childline, aware or Samaritans. Loss of energy is a symptom of depression aswell as helplessness and hopelessness and loss of interest in daily activities. In regards to getting her to wash herself , create a calm and relaxing bathroom setting e.g warm bath add bath bombs , light candles around it , encourage her to play music while in the bath etc reward her for every minute she bathed

Feel free to reach out to me!

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Part of this is just being a teenager…keep on her, but know one day she may be taking 1/2 hour showers and maybe more than one a day…it’s weird, my kiddo went thru it too

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Could it be that your separation is affecting her in more ways than you realize? If both of you have tried talking to her about it, she can be using it as a way to get the two of you working together to achieve something and that may be what she needs to cope. It can be her way of having some control in what is going on with her family.

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It’s her depression!

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Medication is not a fix all mama. You need to be supporting her, guiding her, and helping her. It took me time to find my hygiene tbh as I was heavily depressed undiagnosed. Even still. The motivation just isn’t there. Very much so “what’s the point”. Does she get to have friends over? Does she get to go out? Give her reasons but don’t berate her. It’s hard it’s harder when everyone’s yelling at you for it.

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Take her game system away each time until you’re sure she’s actually showered. I would also recommend her seeing a therapist.

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She’s depressed. That’s why she hates showering.
If she’s already medicated and nothing has changed, you need to get her back to her therapist and get her medicine switched to something else. Also, medicine isn’t a cure all. You also need to be encouraging her, not belittling her and making her feel worse about her mental condition. I’m 23 and I have borderline personality disorder, anxiety, and depression all diagnosed. These moods are the absolute worst and encouragement goes a long way.

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Depression, she needs to get to the right doctor and get the right medication, not showering is part of it. Try to go easy on her, she can’t help it, I understand your frustration but this goes beyond hygiene.

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My mom would have said something like o h ya , you know that boy you like , you think he likes girls who dont take care of themselves "

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Just from my own personal dealings in life, maybe she is having panick attacks in the shower? That is something that is very real and happens to some people. She may be avoiding the shower for that reason.
There are so many things it can be though, I would bring her in to talk with someone to try to get to the bottom of this

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Depression is a horrible disease. Be patient but persistent and encouraging . Don’t shame her. I think you have to go through it to really understand. Some days you don’t feel like you can lift your head up. I hope you can find her the help she needs.

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Maybe you could convince her to just sit in a bathtub of fresh hot water. And go from there.
I have been depressed where I didn’t want to shower and would put it off Cux it felt like so much work but once I did it it felt so good. Maybe it’s the standing that “feels like so much work”… good luck!

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All these things come down to teaching self-love, self-preservation and self-worth … as frustrating as it is teaching her mind, that she deserves all these things is tough and tiresome. Punishing her feelings or nurturing her mind?.. Lots of healing sent your way :sparkling_heart:

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It’s the depression. Makes you want nothing to do with life. Dont care about anything. Get her to another dr whatever they are doing isnt working.

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We have the same problem with my almost ,18 year old daughter. She even refused to brush her hair, we ended up cutting it all off so she’d have less to worry about and she’ll go weeks without washing it. Ive stopped saying anything to her about it other than a “make sure you shower this morning” … I’ll never understand it

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You could maybe get her evaluated for autism. Those sound like autistic traits, and many girls aren’t diagnosed early on because they are good at masking to pretend they are neurotypical. All of the things you mentioned can be things that cause an autistic person to have sensory issues that make them extremely reluctant to do them.

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Therapy! Counseling! Medication on its own is NOT enough! She needs to know ways to cope with all the big feelings she has. Trust me! I’ve battled this for 40 years. My son is 20 and has dealt with it his whole life. The biggest mistake I ever made was letting him choose whether he went to counseling or not. Medication can help, but only if it’s the right one. There could very well be another underlying condition as well, but the only way it can be diagnosed and treated properly is to be seen regularly. I beg you mama, don’t wait! And don’t give in. It is the most heartbreaking thing in the world to see your baby, as a young adult, struggling everyday just to get out of bed and not being able to do the basic daily activities that adults need to do. Keep in mind that addiction and depression go hand and hand. Sometimes it feels mean to force them to get help, but its far worse to be passive. I wish you lots of strength and love.

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It’s all part of depression :cry:

my teen fights me about showers. it’s awful. just gotta hang in there

How often do you think she should shower? Honestly, unless she has gotten sweaty or dirty, once a week is adequate. And for someone who is depressed, even that much seems like a lot. Your nagging is NOT going to fix this. Do not do her laundry. Give her disposable dishes. But constantly picking at her to be you, is not going to change her actions.

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Get her some bath bombs and let her take baths instead :slightly_smiling_face:

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I mean I wouldn’t take anything away if it’s depression that isn’t very fair. It will make her more frustrated but I would point out the obvious like you don’t want to stink or you don’t want people judging you for not being clean. My son was doing the same but he’s younger he’s only 9 but he did just go thru this. We’re on the you have to actually scrub your hair page now. I found a piece of dandruff and told him it’s because he didn’t scrub good enough. His response “ewwwww I wanna shower again so I can clean myself better” I told him no girls like a stinky boy :joy:

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She needs lots of love
And understand
Ask her if you can hang with her or do she wanna go with you for a walk or shopping
Alway ask her to help you with dishes ,laundry
It’s ok if she say no
Thank her anyway …
Don’t forget to hug her
Or ask her for a hug cause you need one …
Show her love and kindness
It works better than do this and do that …

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Make sure she’s on the right meds… Genesight.com

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My step daughter is 10 and she throws an absolute fit when we make her shower. She’s in there for 30 seconds and we tell her there’s no way you shower and she acts like it’s fine. According to her she doesn’t have to shower everyday at her moms house. We have threatened to wash her ourselves haha. Idk if it’s a age thing or what.

Unfortunately it may be the obsession with gaming. Our 12 year old is this way. We set time limits on how long he has to do something and video games done occur until after the thing is done. We have to do this with school work, reading, meals, showers, right down to carving out bathroom time.
Hang in there!

I think it’s a stage, my daughter did the same thing. She finally out grew it, thank god! Just keep encouraging in a positive way & hang in there!!

You’ve mentioned that she was diagnosed with depression. If she’s on medication it may not be working for her. If she isnt on medication she may need it. Seek a Doctor ASAP!

Lack of personal hygiene is a INDICATOR that she’s depressed!

Encourage psychotherapy

Encourage her to go for a 10 or 15 minute walk with you daily.

Less electronics and allowing her to isolate herself.

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That medication may not be working. Sounds like her mental health may not be that great. Sit down and talk to her about it and really dig deeper with her when you’re asking your questions. Just ask her whats going on in her head. Be a listening ear and a shoulder to cry on. Being a teenager this day and age is so different and much harder.

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She needs therapy. She’s acting like someone depressed and she needs help working through these times so when it happens or she’s feeling it happen she can stay on track and not get off the rails. Having anxiety on top of depression can just make you stuck so don’t despair just get her some help and stay encouraging.

So, if showering is the issue, offer alternatives? Buy her feminine wipes, baby wipes for the rest of her body, a good, strong deodorant, spray deodorant, lotion and a dry shampoo? It could be water. My little niece that we’ve had custody of for 4 years now used to have that same struggle because she HATES the feeling of being wet. But, I sat her down with a computer and showed her the long term effects of not practicing good hygiene and cut her shower days down to twice a week. :woman_shrugging:t3:

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Give her a hug and ask her if she wants help with
Hair washing ect… don’t matter how old she is, just be there and hold her and hug her…
deep holes are so hard to get out of when no one reaches far enough. X

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Can you take her for a drive through a park? For some reason, this was helpful. Have drinks in the “to go” cups and relax with some music she chooses. She may open up(because your eyes are on the road)or she may not. But just being by her side, not having any agenda, can go far. Good luck and know that she’ll be okay, mama.:rose:

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Is this a sudden change? If ahe used to shower and suddenly stopped, this could be a sign of sexual abuse. Victims stop taking care of themselves because they think if I am dirty and smell bad, the abuser won’t touch them.

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I suggest therapy if she’s depressed and check to see if her meds need to be adjusted.

I think it’s a combo of age and depression. If she’s not in therapy I suggest you try to get her in one. Medications can help but she needs to work out her problems too. A therapist might also tell you what to do at home to help her and yourself too. It’s rough on parents dealing with kids going thru depression to.

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It’s the depression. Don’t make to big of a deal about it. Don’t punish her for having mental health problems. Support her just sit down and talk to her and ask what it is you can do to help. I was a depressed teen with bad anxiety. Most days it was hard for me to leave my room that included having to take a shower. It didn’t last for long on the not showering part. You go through different phases of depression. Best advise is to just support her and be there for don’t punish her.

Is she battling depression sometimes it is hard to make yourself do things like bathing when your depressed

Make sure to praise the good things. Any thing. Find something that she did positive and focus on that. Pick your battles. Reward the good things!!

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My teenager does this. I think it’s definitely an teenager thing in addition to your child’s already diagnosed depression/anxiety. Idk why this had to be a phase, but I’m over it too.

What about taking her on a shopping trip to buy some fun bath items? Loofas , bath bombs, fancy shampoo? I don’t think at this point punishing her is the answer, especially if she’s suffering with depression.

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Definitely cut the gaming out.
Limit phone time to 30 minutes.
Maybe take her to pick out personal products.
Then sit in the bathroom with her while she showers.
Explain to her that she must keep herself clean.
If she’s on meds, they made to be changed.
If she’s not in therapy, get her there. ASAP.
I have a teen with anxiety/depression, and she’s medicated and in therapy. Personal hygiene has never been a problem for her, but I know if affects everyone differently.
But showering at least every other day should not be negotiable.

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It’s depression. You just don’t want to do it. There’s just something inside you. You know you should but you just don’t feel up to it. That’s the best way I can describe it as someone who has suffered with depression for 20 years. She may need her meds adjusted. Her doctor needs to know this. Also a therapist is a great idea. Even talking to the school social worker.

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I work in assisted living falicity trying to teach adults with ID how to live on their own. I have some supported with the exact same behaviors. It’s frustrating I totally understand. They will wash their hair in the sink. So it looks and smells like they showered. They will go out of their way to not shower or brush their teeth and hair.

They hate the “Nagging” of people getting onto them about doing these things. What we have found that works a little bit better then the “Nagging” is asking them to set a time to do the hygiene. You can’t talk to them about anything to do with hygiene until the time is up, then you remind them they promised to do it at this time and now the time is here. Most of the time they respond with they will and then continue to play on their phones for a few more minutes to finish up a level and then they go a do it. Sometimes it works because it makes them feel like the have some control of when they do the hygiene. We have also sent to ocupational health to re learn how to hygiene properly.

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Okay, set boundaries, dont punish her for her mental health not being the best.
Make a weekly routine. Help her, if shes struggling to get laundry done, help her with it. Run her a nice hot bubble bath and wash her hair for her. As someone who struggled with severe depression at a young age, things like that were a struggle and its not always about the want to be on the phone, sometimes its the feeling of, being alone aside from it within the house, the phones being a means of connection. Connect with her, remind her that youre her mom, and that no matter how old she is, shes your baby. Put her in the bubble bath and scrub her hair and wash her back and just, sit with her, relax with her. brush her hair after, do face masks together, pamper her, and remind her how much you love her, she probably really needs that comfort right now, especially during this pandemic, of knowing that shes loved dearly by her family.
honestly, as someone who aside from crappy mental health as a teen, also had an absolutely awful relationship with my mother. That was one of the few things she did to help my depression when i was younger, and its something that, even as an adult, i miss, because its just, a comfort. Make it a good, relaxing habit for her, get her in that mindset of “hey, my depression is getting out of hand right now, i should go and take a bath/shower and pamper myself and relax for a bit, and then maybe if im up to it ill do the laundry and dishes, if not, tomorrow, and thats okay”.
remind her shes only human, and thats okay.
check with her if her meds are working properly, just to be on the safe side as well.
Sometimes mental health is cruel, and punishing her might make her not only feel insecure and embarassed, but annoyed and aggrevated over such things as well, which will only make the whole situation worse.

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Like Stated if she has depression that might be why, I know I struggle getting in the shower because once I get in every bad thought comes rushing in and it causes me to have panic attacks. Tell to try listening to music while she showers that’s what helps me :heart:

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My 8nyear old does this and I will stand in there and watch her

Ik yours is a teen but if she want to act like a child i guess you treat her as such until shes shows u she can shower or whatever alone

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My brother was the same way teenager years

I wasn’t the best as a fresh teenager with my hygiene. What changed my mind is my mom quit arguing with me about it. When she did that I started getting teased about smelling funny at school. It took few days of that and I shower everyday since then.

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You’re not alone I feel for you I have a teenager that doesn’t like to take showers either he’d go for days if I let him. I fight with him about it every single time. My advice is tell her once to do what she has to do and then let it go…for your own sanity let her experience the other kids talking about it it will make her feel uncomfortable more then you fighting with her about it then maybe she’d wise up. You are doing your part as a mom in telling her as a teenager she knows what’s right and what’s wrong in her actions let it be for now she’ll see in time. I know it will be hard for you to do this since you know she’s having some issues with her mental health but you can’t keep holding her hand it’s something everyone does to keep their body clean period! Always tell her that and maybe add some nice music to the shower time and for now and make it the same time every day. stand in there with her to give her a head start to realize that this is important to do

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Age makes a big difference on how to address, but I would make her a visual chart for shower time steps and start staying in the bathroom until she understands this is how it’s properly done every time. I’m guessing a lot of it is the depression, but that is not a reason to ignore hygiene. Hoping you get some good insight!

Maybe try to talk her into a bubble bath instead? Or maybe check on her during showers to make sure she’s washing, than maybe she will bathe, knowing you will be coming in. I have three teen daughter’s, and they like to shower too much, two of them anyways, atleast two a day. How old is she? Maybe when she’s a year or two older, she will care more about her hygeine.

I would tell her to start the shower, and then give her one minute to get into it. Then I would go in and park myself on the floor with a book to make sure she stayed in. If privacy is a concern get a dark shower curtain from the dollar store.

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First, depression/anxiety are different for everyone, especially teenagers. Some kids can live fine with it and other cannot. Some teenagers are great on meds and in therapy and some are not, the answer will have to be looked for constantly over the years. Coming from a person who just left her teenage years and has depression as well as other mental health issues it is a long hard battle on her end and will also be on yours. I severely struggle with personal hygiene and I promise you it is nothing we want to struggle with but indefinitely do, it probably hurts her more to see herself than it hurts you. Getting up to do anything can be a really hard struggle, even slightly moving over in bed can feel impossible and it seems like she’s going through that right now. When I first started trying to get my personal hygiene in order (to no choice of mine because I was in such a deep hole) I was literally just laying on my side in a fetus position with the water running from the tub(not a shower bc it was too much to handle for me) it took months to get over this and I still neglect myself years later, yes I will shower and bathe not but it can be weeks even months in between them. Yes I know this sounds absolutely disgusting and freaks most people out, but people do not realize how hard things can be for people who suffer with depression, especially if they have a severe enough diagnosis. Honestly if she’s constantly on her phone or playing games o line with her friends those are most likely her safe havens and something she cares deeply about so I would suggest not doing anything to harsh with those, I understand it’s frustrating on your end but she doesn’t need any punishment it can make things worse and even strain y’all’s relationship, which is hard to get back. I wouldn’t change anything up too much either because to someone suffering with depression change can overwhelm us and make things severely worse just to give you an example when my parents first found out about my diagnosis they took things out of my room because I wouldn’t keep it clean and they thought it might help me, until I would hurt myself and try to take my life because if my parents had to walk me through life like that I felt like I was a burden and I wanted to take that burden off them because I loved them and they didn’t deserve to care for me like they tried. It can sometimes make things worse, I do suggest therapy for sure but medication can also be a struggle(I’ve been in the cycle for almost 4 years, still haven’t found anything and I’ve been on over a dozen medications over time) helping her out will be hard and long but it will start working in the long run l. And when you get too frustrated or feel line you can do it anymore please seek help from other family members or even get into therapy yourself, therapy can be for anyone and is actually really helpful even if you or she may not think so. Also one more thing she will most likely fight you, not just because she’s a teenager or your daughter but because this is hard for her and often times I’m sure she just wants to give up or not deal with the problem because she’s in a comfortable spot. It will take both of you and probably what feels like a village but I promise both of you can get through it and things will get better over time, but please don’t expect change to happen overnight either, it can takes months to years to even start to see change but take it by paces and keep working. I hope any of this helps and you and your daughter can get on a good track. I wish you both luck :heart:

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Depression is no joke her meds could not be strong enough die herbtake her back to doc and let them switch up .eds and go from there …it’s sad that she feels this way prayers to you and family . Kids are struggling these days it’s hard …

It’s a teenager thing. Some just rebel. I think she’s a bit more committed because of the depression. This is is a tough time not being social which is important for teens. I’ve got babies so I get busy then ask myself did I brush my teeth today. There have been times where I’m in bed and I just don’t have the energy or drive to get out of bed. I’ll do it in the morning I say. I definitely think you should address the depression but that might not solve the issue.

Maybe speak to her dr. Her meds may need to be adjusted. Good luck😊

Is she also in therapy? Meds help but having someone teach her coping mechanisms might help

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This is a common side affect of depression don’t fight her on it talk to her and support her and find a way of meeting in the middle. Punishmening her will only make things worse. Hope this helps

Sounds like my kid following

So, I’ll be honest, this was me in college. My depression was so intense that all the energy I had was used up going to school, spending time playing video games was a way to recharge and unfortunately sometimes I never recharged enough to be motivated to shower or wash my hair, etc.
Don’t nag her, my mom used to drive me nuts and only pushed me further into not doing anything. BUT, I live on my own now, and miraculously I do everything I neglected to do while living at home. Showing regularly, brushing my teeth, picking up after myself, ect. I can’t guarantee this is what’ll happen, but there is hope for her to not be a dirty gremlin. :joy: Hope this helps!

Sounds like she’s depressed

These can all be side effects of depression and anxiety. Add parental separation on top of that and demand avoidance…taking away electronics, is taking away one of her only lifelines. You cannot punish depression out of someone.

I would work on co-regulation, family and ind therapy, and really think about what matters more. A sink of dishes or a depressed teenager? There is plenty of time to teach independence skills.
Right now focus on mental health and support.

If a shower is too hard, see if she’ll give herself a spongebath or use body wipes (they also make a dry bath). Also check out stuff like Lume. On days her depression is so bad, it would be easier to fake a shower than take one…give her love and acceptance. Encourage her to braid her hair in between showerings to prevent matting. Is she at least showering a couple times a month?

Sometimes, an inviting bath with music she likes with 0 expectation to wash hair, or even bath wipes to keep groin and armpits fresh can more than suffice. A bidet may be another option to consider.

Have fun, visual reminders about tasks that break them down step by step. Also encouraging posters.

She is fighting mental health issues that are a full time job. Remind her you love her unconditionally and that dishes will never be more important than her mental health.

Think about what absolutely has to get done, let go of the rest, and see if you can help her with those activities. Turn it into fun, one on one time.

My daughter went through this stage… She would put conditioner in her hair so it would smell clean but was obviously not washed. I made a deal so to speak with her that if she started doing it right we would go to the store and let her pick shampoo and stuff that was special for her. She has 2 younger sisters and she did not like the “kid” shampoo we had. I let her use mine and just tried to make her feel special instead of nagging. It did not take very long before she was feeling better about herself and when people started telling her what pretty hair she had we never had this trouble again. Try not nagging and make it a fun “girls” thing. Depression is a horrible thing. Good luck to you both.:blush::purple_heart:

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They use SSRI medications for depression and unfortunately what works great for one person and does nothing for another… it isn’t like penicillin and we know that works for many infections in anyone that takes it. When being placed on SSRI you are basically your own lab rat testing out many different medications on yourself until you get one that works and that can be very frustrating especially for a teenager.

No offense but when I hear people say their kids have been independent from a young age all I hear is that the parents have been negligent. The last year had been exceptionally hard on kids and depression can be huge sometimes… Sometimes its so huge that normal chores feel insurmountable. Maybe right now instead of being independent she needs to be dependant and have her parent help her out by doing a load of laundry for her or something.

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My daughter is 11. Her hair sometimes is still greasy even after a shower. She says she washes it but, it doesn’t smell like shampoo at all. She doesn’t want to brush her hair or change out of comfy clothes. She only let’s me do her hair when she goes to school. Which is twice a week. Shes going through alot right now tho. Her dad and I separated and its been hard for her. So I belive she’s depressed and im getting her help and enrolling her in something where she’ll be active and something she’ll enjoy. Horse riding. I try not to argue with her about her hygiene too much because I myself know how hard it is to pull yourself together when you’re depressed. I just try to be there for her whenever she needs me. I just let her know, "your hair is still greasy babe, it doesn’t smell like shampoo. Make sure you’re washing it, lathering shampoo and use conditioner " then she gets upset that she did. I just let her be. Its hard I know, just try to be patient and understanding, she needs to feel supported. Nothing worse than feeling like even your mom is against you. I had issued with my mom as well. She didn’t understand what I was going though and would tell me to stop being a cry baby and toughen up. She doesn’t believe in depression or anxiety, so it was tough for me. Just be someone for her that you wish you had.
Edited to add, I let her blast her music whenever she wants, her music helps her calm down. She listens to string music. Its calming.

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:thinking: maybe she has something against showers and would prefer a bath…um I have no clue…my 12 year old refuses to wash her hair properly so I go in their and wash it for her and I told her until she washes herself and her hair properly I will be doing it for her…I’m sorry mama I wish I had better advice for you… kids can be so difficult… hugs mom

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If she is depressed maybe she doesn’t feel like showering or doing simple hygiene and would rather talk or play with said friends because it’s the only joy she gets. If she is prescribed the medicine id talk to her psychiatrist about the hygiene and see if its also a depression linked issue.

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Have you tried asking her how she’s doing mentally?
When I get in a bad mental space I stop taking care of myself like this because it feels like a chore. It sounds like depression. Or alot of anxiety just building up in her.

There is definitely a deeper meaning behind her not wanting to practice proper hygiene. Stop punishing her for not showering and get to the root of the problem. She could be suffering from depression or anxiety.

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