Moms Are Getting Heated Over ‘Summer Rules’ on TikTok & We Can See Both Sides

What were summers like in your house growing up? Mine were filled with swimming, afternoon bike rides, Disney movies on repeat, and so many popsicles. As a mom, I try to give my kids a ‘90s summer as much as I can — the uninhibited joy that comes from no responsibilities, no school, and long, happy days full of spontaneous adventures. But other families don’t do well with a lack of structure from June through August. Moms on TikTok are hotly debating the best way to approach this in videos revealing their “summer rules,” and both sides make good points.

TikToker Camille Munday (@camille_munday) shared a video that has over 192,000 views, where she broke down her “summer rules” for her child and two stepkids. “It is crucial for my mental health to have some rules this summer,” she shares in the clip. One rule is no sleepovers because her kids “come home grumpy and in the worst mood.”

“Rule number two: no electronics until all of their chores are done,” Munday says. It sounds mean, but she instilled this rule because “one of our kids would wake up extremely early just so that they could play on their electronics.” She adds, “And, yes, they have chores every single day because we’re all making messes in the house. We’re all going to help clean it up.”

I understand where she’s coming from. My 6- and 5-year-olds also wake up earlier on the weekends and in the summer to play video games or watch TV! However, as someone who used to wake up early for Saturday morning cartoons, this doesn’t really bother me.

two kids watching tv
Vika Glitter/Pexels

Another firm rule she sets? Absolutely no new toys. “If it is not their birthday or Christmas or a holiday, they do not get toys unless they want to buy it with their own money,” she says. Munday shares that it is “very, very hard not to spoil your kids,” but it got to the point where her kids wanted something new “every time” they went to the store. With that being said, she lets her kids earn money “whenever they want.” They just have to ask, and they will give their kids “stuff to do” to earn money. I like that this is still treating kids, while also teaching them the value of working hard and being responsible!

Other rules include asking for snacks (although healthy snacks are OK “whenever they want”), and a bedtime. The response to this was mixed. Some people felt like Munday was being too strict. “No sleepovers bc of bad moods is crazy. It’s summer who cares. The best memories I have are sleep overs with my cousins,” one person wrote.

“Do you wake up and do chores immediately before getting on your phone?” another asked. Someone else noted, “Summer = a break from all the rules! As long as everyone is safe and respectful summer is full on fun at our house!”

Others agreed with her, though. “I feel like these are all completely reasonable!!” one person wrote. Another person commented, “I have all the same rules for my daughter & it works for us too 🥰”

“This is all good. Structure is what kids crave. Respect to you for these, I need to get my list going 😅” someone else said.

two kids doing dishes
cottonbro studios/Pexels

Other moms shared their own summer rules. “I don’t feel like kids need to be so controlled 🤍🤍” TikToker Lottie Weaver (@lottie..weaver) captioned a video on TikTok, which has over 226,000 likes.

“I would never make my kids ask for a snack,” Weaver says. (Although, she does consider a “snack” and a “treat” very different, explaining that popsicles, chocolate bars, and suckers are different from saltine crackers and fruit snacks.)

And little gifts are OK, too. “I spoil the crap out of my kids,” she continues. “If I were to be like, ‘my kids only get a present on Christmas and their birthday and on holidays,’ Pfft! That would be wrong. Normally, any time if I go out of the house with my children, they are always getting something. Whether it’s at the dollar store, whether it’s a treat at the gas station. Now I’m not spending gazillions and gazillions of dollars on that, but if we are running to Target, and there’s like a little crayon set or something and it’s like three bucks, yes, queen, get it.” This is also how my family does it, and I figure, if I get a little daily treat, why can’t they?

Weaver also makes her kids read 30 minutes a day and go to bed before 9 p.m. (compared to before 8 p.m. during the school year). “I go to bed at 9:15 at night, so I don’t want my kids staying up when, like, they’re not supervised,” she said. She also asks her kids to help her with things around the house, but they don’t have “set in stone, every single day” chores.

girl reading on a blanket
Skylar Zilka/Unsplash

“Last but not least, I make them get ready every day.” This includes brushing teeth, doing hair, and getting dressed. So she has some loose structure and expectations, but nothing too strict.

“Manteining (sic) a sleep schedule all year around !!! it was so hard going back to school after all summer staying up late,” one person wrote. Someone else commented, “this is what parents are supposed to do.”

Still, some people disagreed with her method. “I can get behind these except getting ready everyday. I love being in my pajamas all day 😩” someone said. Another wrote, “My house is completely unhinged in the summer. No bedtime, endless snacks. Little chaotic but we enjoy it 😂”

No matter how you decide to structure your summer (if you structure it at all), the important thing is focusing on what works for your family and ignoring how other people handle the season. Wild, responsible, calm, or chaotic, summer is a great time to bond with your kids and make memories. And at the end of the day, those are the things they will remember the most.

Before you go, check out these celebrities who have shared their technology rules for their kids.

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