Sometimes being a mom of a 13-year-old boy has me scratching my head.

Our son is at an age where he likes to disagree with everything I say, because he apparently knows more than me.

It’s not just him. I know most middle school kids are the same way, but it can be frustrating at times.

Well the other day I was having a conversation with him about being responsible for his own belongings.

Example: if you lose your athletic clothes and do not do everything you can to find them, then you won’t be able to compete at your track meet this week.

But, but, but he tells me he did everything he could to find them.

So, I go through a list of things he could’ve done and asked if he did them.

Did you check the lost and found?

“No, they moved it.”

Did you ask a teacher where they moved it to?

“I guarantee they don’t know where it was moved it.”

As I’m sighing, I say, “Well, then you didn’t do everything you could. You didn’t ask where they moved the lost and found box.”

And then he interrupts me and says, “That’s not grammar, but OK.”

Oh, boy, did I come up with a list of chores for him to do after that one.

I mean, I have a bachelor’s degree in journalism and I write for a living! But, that was besides the fact.

I couldn’t believe he wasn’t listening to a word I was saying about being responsible. Instead he wanted to correct my grammar Ugh!

So I had him mop the floors. Then I made him polish my stainless steel refrigerator, oven, microwave and dish washer.

Then I made him scrub the toilet. Then feed the dogs. And then dust and polish the wood furniture.

One last thing I thought he could do — and then he would be done and would have “learned his lesson” — was to clean the railing in the stairwell. 

It is white so after he goes outside to play basketball, it gets dirty pretty quick.

I handed him a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and told him to go give it a good wipe down.

If you’ve never used one, you get it wet and then squeeze most of the water out. 

So I gave it to him and he asked where to get water from. We were standing in the kitchen so I looked at him kind of funny, but told him since the stairwell was by the downstairs bathroom just go there.

So, off he goes and a few minutes later I walk around the corner just in time to see him pulling the sponge out of the toilet bowl.

I just stood there and looked at him in disbelief. I said, “Did you really just stick your hand in the toilet to get that sponge wet?”

He replied, “But you said go to the bathroom to get it wet.” 

I said, “Yes, there is a sink. Why would I ever tell you to use toilet bowl water?”

I don’t know if that was a boy thing or a 13-year-old thing or a “I’m mad I have to do chores” thing. Maybe it was a combination of all three.

But he really had me scratching me head on that one.


Features Reporter Jessica Pounds can be reached at

React to this story:


Recommended for you