Sometimes You Just Have To Tell Them They Smell!


Uh yes I did….Hear me out though, before you start telling me off for being mean. 

I’m pretty sure fellow mums of teens will completely understand where I’m coming from with this one. 

I’m not saying all, but most teenagers at some point seem to go through that horrible condition called ‘the mysterious case of nose blindness!’ Yes they don’t seem to be aware of their own increase in body odour, or the fact that their room stinks and it’s not pleasant. 

They often have that one favourite hoody that they refuse to take off, so getting it off their back to wash is a mission in itself. It smells so bad it’s steaming (slight exaggeration), but call it poetic license. 
So what do you do about it? 
Try the softly softly approach and drop subtle hints, by purchasing them their own toiletries, or just come straight out with it and tell them they stink? 

In my experience the subtle approach just doesn’t work, I’ve tried it. 

My only option has been to resort to being blunt. Yes it is awkward and sounds mean but I have grown tired of the smell and have had to resort to just telling my teen that they smell bad. Yes it can make for an unpleasant conversation, and you will be met with that typical teenage defensive outburst but in the long run it’s for their own good. 

Here is my reasoning. If I can smell it then other people can too. Unpleasent body odour is one of those things that as much as we can try to deny it, we make judgments about people based upon it. 

I’m sure if you were a teen in the 90’s you can all remember there was always one kid in the class that would be labelled ‘skanky’ and picked on for it. Either because there was a certain whiff about them, they were unfortunate to suffer with dandruff or just struggled with spots. Kids are mean though and will jump on anything as ammunition for teasing. By not telling my teen that they smell then I’m be putting them in that position. 

So yes it may be awkward or come across as mean, but if they don’t respond to the subtle hints or gentle conversations, then sometimes you just have to tell them the smell!  

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