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kayakingkris

ON STRIKE! I'm tired of picking up after everyone

kayakingkris
16 years ago

I told my husband that he is like having another child in the house. Anyone else feel this way?

I am constantly picking up stuff off of the kitchen table, the top of the dryer, the kitchen counter and every other horizontal surface in our home. I tease him that if I weren't around (to pick up after him) the table would crumble under the weight of the stuff he leaves lying around. Gloves, junk mail, calculators, newspapers, books, cards, phone numbers on scraps of paper, you name it, he piles it up. In addition to my husband we have a 9yr old who brings home reams of papers, homework, worksheets, flyers from every recreation dept within 30 miles, hockey schedules, school play script, reminder notes, party invitations etc..... I feel like I am drowning in papers.

So here's what I've been threatening. I don't know if I'll be able to do it, but my plan is to STOP picking up after both of them for 10 days. I hope this will make my point (that they have too much stuff and need to organize it themselves) or give me more gray hair.

Anyone else tried this with their family? Wish me luck, I just can't stand it (the piles everywhere) anymore!

Kris

Comments (56)

  • lizql
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I stopped picking up other people's stuff a long time ago. I've raised two daughters and am now working on a nine year old son. My DH knows where his things go, hamper, wet stuff, washer. So does my son. I think you have to have a place for it and instruct where it goes. Letting it pile will probably lead to leaving it pile.

  • steve_o
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I was working from home one day and on one show (Dr. Phil?) they had a woman who was sick of the mess in her family's home so she finally picked up everything that was laying about and sold it on ebaY (!). DH and DS/DD were amazed that she sold Leatherman tools, handheld video games, clothing, favorite toys, etc., but she warned them that if the mess built up like that again, she'd do it again. I don't think she said she'd warn them, either. I'd be interested to see if the lesson stuck.

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  • eandhl
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    How about trying a basket or box for each, What isn't in the basket/box each eve. save for a week or so - them show them what from now on you will throw away.

  • kayakingkris
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Well it's harder than I thought. This morning I was home, my son is off school so I was home instead of work. I ended up straightening the kitchen! Just what I said that I wouldn't do - you are right it was driving me crazy and only after a day!

    I like the basket idea. I may end up trying that.

    And yes we have a system for most things, they just refuse to participate in organizing!

    I wish that I had the nerve to have spent the morning doing something for me, like working on one of my quilts or crocheting, instead of picking up after those slobs that live in my house! OK it's their house too - they should help take care of it!!

  • jannie
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    You go,girl! When I first got married, my DH dropped his clothes all over the house. I picked up after him for a long time, then one day, without warning, I went on strike. Instead of picking up his things and laundering and folding or hanging them, I threw everything under the bed. After about a week, he ran out of socks. I told him where to find a pair. He got mad but real smart real fast. Let us know what you do and how it turns out!

  • kittiemom
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I have thought about this, but I'm afraid it would drive me insane. DH has gotten much better over time about picking his things up. He almost always puts his clothes in the hamper. If he doesn't, I just remind him & he does it. We have a dresser valet on a shelf in his armoire. He puts his wallet, keys, phone, etc. on that (usually).

    I have talked to DH & explained that the house just gets on my nerves when there's stuff everywhere. I've also explained to him that vacuuming is impossible if clothes & shoes are on the floor. He still needs reminders sometimes, but has improved greatly.

    I doubt that you going on strike will affect your DH or your son, unless you do what Jannie did & let them run out of clean clothes. It probably won't bother them if you let the newspapers & mail pile up.

  • Julie_MI_Z5
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Kris,

    I tried it once and nearly gave myself an ulcer. Even the neighbors were shocked at the sight of my house.

    We have basic EASY systems in place that are not followed. DH figures it's his house, too, and if he doesn't want to put away his dirty dishes, pick up his dirty clothes, throw the newspaper in the recycling bin, hang up a wet towel, wipe off a sticky counter, etc, then he shouldn't have to. He doesn't expect ME to do it, he is just content to live that way.

    My family has, obviously, still not caught on to FlyLady's shiny-sink idea after several years of my example.

  • bmmalone
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    My teenage son left dirty clothes on the bathroom floor, wet towels etc too. then they started being left whereever he dropped them. I gave him two warning and then told him that I woul put things into the laundry hamper, but if i did that I didn't do the laundry as well, that would be his responsibility. Well, a week went by and suddenly he had no clean clothes. He now knows how to operate the washing machine and how to iron. I made him do his own laundry for three weeks, and then told him i would go it if he picked up after himself. Every now and again we go back to him doing his own laundry............

  • kayakingkris
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Stike update: I didn't pick up one thing of either of theirs yesterday. It drove me nuts! This morning my husband ate his breakfast on top of about 2 inches of newspapers! My mother would have a fit if she knew what I was up to.

    I can't rely on him running out of clothes to get his attention. Laundry is one thing he does. However, he only starts the laundry he doesn't actually ever finish it. He has strict instructions to not touch my clothes. He has turned countless sweaters into Barbie doll sized clothes. Label reading is not one of his talents. Washes everything in hot water and runs the dryer forever.

    I think I need another strategy for my family. Thanks for letting me vent!

  • lazy_gardens
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    "This morning my husband ate his breakfast on top of about 2 inches of newspapers!"

    That's a good start. When his plate slides off the table because the pile is so high, it may register with him.

    "he only starts the laundry he doesn't actually ever finish it"

    So .... if the wet clothing is still in the washer when you need to do a load, remove it, but DO NOT dry it. Just throw it in a laundry basket and let it sit. Ditto with the dryer. Remove clothing, but just throw it into a laundry basket. If he's not aorund to finish it, don't do it for him. If his clean underwear is too wet to wear, it will register with him.

    I re-educated 3 college students with this method, especially the one who would start a load of laundry and vanish to his friends house for a couple of days: nothing like finding a moldy basket of favorite t-shirts, or a heavily wrinkled pait of jeans that would have been wearable if it war hung out of the dryer.

  • Julie_MI_Z5
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Kris,
    Well, you tried it for a day! At least now you know it is worth it for YOU to do what you do, just to keep your sanity.

    I tried it for a whole week once, which explains why I thought I was getting an ulcer.
    LOL

  • wantoretire_did
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Many many years ago I had the same battle with DSs, especially the older one who was in HS. My rule was if you put dirty clothes in the hamper in the laundry room, which was just down the hall, I would wash and dry, but I absolutely refused to go hunting for laundry. It only took once: 10:00 PM and "nothing to wear for school tomorrow". He then re-learned to use the washer/dryer. They are both very self-sufficient now and do excellent laundry chores. :-)

    Carol

  • kayakingkris
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    HI it's me again,

    My son collects dirty clothes in his room too. Should I quit reminding him to bring them to the laundry room? I never go collecting them, but I do tell him to bring them down to me. If I didn't remind him he would be out of pants before too long. Maybe I'll try that, it would be a small step towards my goal. One I could probably live with too. I'll let you know.

  • emmhip
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I am laughing at all these posts because it is all so familiar, DH is just a kind of a dirty guy and doesn't mind living in a mess, so I am really no help here, but I can empathize with kris! Once DH ran out of socks when I was on a (sort of) laundry strike, he went right over to my drawer and stretched out a pair... problem solved! I think my DH is always going to be sort of a mess. But I am partly responsible because I married him, and I knew about his habits way ahead of time. Thank god is he a great father and all around great guy, because sometimes something as small as wet towel on the floor can just about kill me on a bad day. Not sure how to cure this problem, I like the idea of the baskets and then threatening to toss the stuff though...

  • rjvt
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I refuse to do laundry that is not in the hamper, and everyone in the house knows it. They used to throw stuff all on the floor AROUND the hamper rather than in it. But I won't wash it unless it's in the hamper. DDs also play sports and need uniforms on certain days. If it is in the hamper right after using it, it is much more likely to get washed before the next time it's needed. Sometimes, 10 minutes before we leave for a game, I get a "Where's my uniform?!!" cry. But if they didn't put it in the hamper long enough in advance for me to wash it, and didn't even think to remind me the night before, I really don't feel guilty when I tell them to dig through the hamper and wear a dirty uniform! It usually takes AT LEAST a few weeks for them to forget that lesson LOL - they don't learn quickly, but I don't feel guilty, either.

    As for everything else around the house that everyone just seems to drop wherever, and the fact that there are never any towels because DD (16) has them all in her room on the floor, that IS a problem, and besides telling them that I won't take them anywhere until it's picked up, I don't have any solutions.

  • lionors
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    rjvt,

    I don't know if this will solve your towel problem, but it helped me.

    We each have a different color for towels, three for each of us. That way, if someone throws their towel on the floor or sticks it in the back of their closet (how lazy is that?), then _they_ don't have a towel.

    It used to drive me crazy that I would hang up a towel while DH would kind of shove his on the holder, then he would take my nice, dry, pleasant-smelling towel the next morning and leave me one looking like a used Kleenex. Yuck.

    Also, my little darlings would leave their towels wherever. Now everyone is a bit more responsible, 'cause Mama won't let them use her pretty pink towels. Ha!

  • rjvt
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Lionors, unfortunately, DD DOES have her own color towels. They are on her floor, upstairs when she is in the bathroom, and she takes all the clean ones I just took out of the dryer. I have tried not putting clean towels in the bathroom, but DH gets mad because HE doesn't have one when he gets out of the tub. Luckily, it is only 1 of my DDs that does this, but she is driving me CRAZY! Many years ago, I had to do the same thing with cups for her. I had a cup (the only one of that color) that I actually put a P-Touch label with her name on it, and that was the only one she was allowed to use, and if it was sitting in the living room or wherever, she couldn't blame it on her sister. She is better with cups now, but still spends more time complaining that things are her sister's than actually cleaning them up. This is the same kid who, at about 5 years old with her then 3 year old sister were found on my bed drawing on the wall. She wrote her name, while her sister made a 1" scribble. She blamed it on her sister. LOL.

  • intherain
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I, too, refuse to do laundry that is not in the hamper. I have 3 children and one of them has a tendency to throw all his clothes on the floor. I've finally told him that he is not allowed to use the computer until his floor is completely clean and his bed is made. Amazing how his clothes are now in the hamper and his bed is made!

    Sheryl

  • lionors
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    rjvt,

    Too bad the separate towels/cups isn't working.

    Our DD doesn't have a problem with the towels, but with the water! Apparently, her indication that a shower is over is when the hot water is gone. We joke that the most important rule in our house is "don't shower _after_ DD." Seriously, if she jumps in first, you have to wait 30-40 minutes before you can take a warm shower. Without her, there is enough hot water for two people to take normal showers.

    Good luck!

    Lionors

  • lazy_gardens
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    "If I didn't remind him he would be out of pants before too long."

    OK ... when he has to go somewhere in his undies because all the pants are dirty, or wear a festering pair that has been lying on his floor for three weeks .... he'll learn.

  • marie26
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    On Saturday, I asked DH to put all his clothes that were laying on the floor in the hamper because I was going to do the laundry.

    On Saturday night, I decided to do just one load of towels. DH hadn't yet picked up his clothes and got mad at me for "washing my things and not his". I told him that I was only washing the towels and brought up to him that all he had to do was put his clothes in the hamper. I, on the other hand, had to wash, dry and fold them all. It seemed to me, I said, that he was getting the much better end of the bargain. He did, for at least this week, put all his clothes in the hamper. And I've decided not to pick up his clothes anymore although it drives me nuts to see them sitting all over the bedroom floor.

  • rjvt
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Believe, me, if you start only washing what's in the hamper, your DH will put his clothes in the hamper. Now, as far as a teenager and towels, maybe not...

  • Marisha
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I raised 6 kids...I told each one of my children when they turned 13, "Now that you are a teenager, you have a special privilege...You get to use the washer and dryer"....and they all learned how to do their own laundry at that age and from then on it was their responsibility to keep their clothes clean. They each had their own laundry basket that was kept in their closet for their dirty clothes, to carry them to the washer, then back with clean clothes.
    They also had their own color towels/washclothes so their was no fighting over clean ones.
    Mary

  • kayakingkris
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Update ..... My son is three pairs away from running out of clean jeans. I am secretly getting excited about the conversation we will have when this happens. I'll keep you posted.

  • lazy_gardens
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    kayakingkris ...
    Practice giving him a blank, baffled stare as you say several times:

    "I washed all the clothes that were in the dirty clothes hamper."

  • marie26
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    DH knew that today was laundry day but he still had some clothes on the floor instead of in the hamper. I was standing right next to the 3 items on the floor and called him in from the living room to put them in the hamper. He didn't argue (which was an amazing feat in itself) but just came and put them where they belonged.

  • outofmytree
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    My teen son is getting better about hitting the hamper. He didn't like the idea of not having clean clothes for school. Because if they aren't in the hamper, I didn't wash them. And also the balled up sock problem...I tell him to unball his socks cuz I CAN NOT stand to undo smelly socks! If his socks are in the hamper and all balled up that is how they get washed and returned to him. Sorry but I can't stand to "undo" his socks.....Yikes!!!
    LOL

  • kayakingkris
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    My husband did laundry all day yesterday. He actually started and finished all of the laundry (except mine, thank GOD) that was in the baskets in the laundry room. Our son saw him doing this and went upstairs and got his pile! My plan failed. I was hoping that I could teach him a lesson, instead he taught me.

  • sue102
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    If you're tired of picking up after everyone else, DON'T! Just stop it and tell them why. After a few days, they'll wonder why you've quit (It WILL come up again!) and you can tell them and get them all (including your hubby) to help clean up the mess. If you take a few minutes each day to pick up after yourselves, including the husband things will improve. If you keep picking up after your hubby, he'll just keep throwing junk on the floor.
    Sue102

  • talley_sue_nyc
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    marie26, why did you call him in? Just leave them there, and wash all the OTHER clothes.

    Or, throw them in the garbage, if you're REALLY mad, and you feel you've done all the reminding, instructing, etc., that is fair.

    throwing clothes NEXT TO the hamper is beyond the pale. It's flat-out disrespectful. If he left the on the floor where he dropped them, you could say it was forgetful or lazy. Having the energy (and the brainpower) to toss the TOWARD the hamper, but not bothering to put them IN, is saying "you should pick up after me."

    Not putting clothes in the hamper, if the hamper is in the same room as you when you're undressing, is just beyond it for me. My DD does this, and I'm so close to taking the clothes and tossing them. She gets a few more days of reminding, and then....

    If I can't bear to toss them bcs of the money factor, I'm going to come up w/ something else--maybe a magic marker slash on her arm for each item of clothes that's on the floor, or maybe take the clothing items PLUS another thing away from her.

    I do want to be sure she can easily reach the hanging hamper; that's her only excuse.

  • kayakingkris
    Original Author
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Tally Sue - did you say you were considering a marker slash mark on your daughters arm as a form or punishment for deliberately missing the hamper? My son would think that was the coolest thing. Wouldn't work at my house.

    He has a teacher now that uses rubber stamps as rewards for grades. They can choose to have the stamp on their paper or on their hand or just recently my son has been comin home with stamps on his face. Yesterday a pink heart! Drives me nuts!

  • talley_sue_nyc
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    that's what I was thinking. She's in middle school, so I thought she might mind.

    But so far she doesn't seem worried about appearances, nor does she get teased bcs she looks bad (she won't comb her hair, fights us over taking a shower, etc.)

  • lots2do
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I write this respectfully, please don't use the magic marker on your daughter's arm. Have the consequence fit the mistake - then it should make more of an impact. The magic marker idea sounds as if it's coming out of your frustration but I'm not sure it will help your daughter remember to take care of her laundry. It may breed a lot of resentment and shame.

  • OllieJane
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I agree with "lots2do"-please don't slash your dd arms with magic markers. Where did you ever hear of doing such a thing? Sorry, don't mean to bash you-but, it does sound like a really weird and shameful thing to do.

  • dgmarie
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    The marker stuff is cruel.

    Please don't.

    It will reflectly bad upon you as well.

  • celiaanne
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I agree with Sue102! As to laundry, that's easy. Don't pick their stuff up, don't launder it and don't say a word about. Make them ask! If/when they do, tell them the rules (in hamper it's washed/on floor, it isn't) and say no more! I think they'll get the point very quickly.

    As to the clutter, if it is in your way or you just don't like the appearance of it (and it is UNREASONABLE clutter), I would just get a garbage bag and toss everying in it. Husband and other could then fish out whatever they were looking for when they needed it. I don't think it would be too long before they were a lot more cautious about leaving their things around! This is a little trickier since one person's definition of clutter is another's definition of homey! :)

    Good luck!

  • julieunruly1
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Or you could do what I did. In a PMS moment I had a ranting temper tantrum over the clutter in the garage (I couldn't walk in there without tripping over something). Anyway, I started dragging stuff out to the road and throwing stuff away and what do ya know, everyone started movin', even grandpa. ;) One day later and I can park my truck in there now!! And I thought I was going to have to call the organizer for that one. Huh. :)

  • talley_sue_nyc
    16 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    well, just so people don't think I'm a monster, I've never done the marker thing. I did, however, take a bundle of clothes that was right in front of the hamper,and pack them away downstairs. She was kind of upset, since they had her favorite pants, but there haven't been clothes on the floor since! In two weeks, I'll put them in the laundry and they can come back into rotation.

  • adobesunlight
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    ACK!! Don't do it sweetie!! This is where my problem started a few years ago by "going on strike" for a week!! OMG! My house turned upside down and everyone breathed a sigh of relief because I wasn't staying on top of things, but istead giving in to them by allowing the mess!!! I'm serious!! From that point on, things were never the same as I had lost control and found it easier (so I thought at the time) to allow clutter into our home. Over the years it has gotten so much worse! Now it's a way of life....ugh! So they won, I lost....and even though I'd like my house to be orderly and clean, I'm too overwhelmed to tackle it...

    Just my two cent's worth...
    Good Luck!

  • mc_hudd
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I know this post is old, but I'd like to reply anyway...

    What is it about men?! My fiance has the same problem w/ getting his clothes *into* the basket that is designated for dirty clothes. Usually he can make it just outside the basket on the floor, but never IN it! I couldn't do the "don't wash what's on the floor thing" b/c he's got so many clothes and isn't picky about what he wears, so it would take a good 2-3 months (maybe more) for him to run out. Also, as for socks/underwear, if he ran out of those he would probably just do his own laundry and I cannot stand the way he does laundry, and I feel like if reflects badly on me if his clothes don't look good. (I pride myself in my laundry skills.) :)

    I guess you could say I am a bit picky about how some things are done, so of course, when I say something about it, in his eyes, I'm nagging. But, I only "nag" about the things that are so easy to do, that he usually spends more time/energy trying to get out of doing than actually doing; ie: throwing dirty clothes right next to the basket. I honestly don't think he does this on purpose, he just doesn't pay attention & doesn't care... This is one of my peeves.

    What gets me is that he always says that he wants the house to be clean, uncluttered, etc., but he doesn't seem to be able to add himself to the "dirty house equation". I have 2 inside/outside dogs (St. Bernard & Choc. Lab) and he's a tad bit jealous of them, so of course, if the house gets messy it's automatically blamed on them. I realize that when you have pets in the house they are going to contribute to some of the dirt/mud tracked in, things getting knocked over (although this doesn't happen much now that I think about it), and miscellaneous messes (not potty messes) here and there, but I just don't see how it's their fault that the dirty plate on the table doesn't get put in the sink, or the soda can doesn't get put in w/ the recycling, etc. Grrr! I just get so worked up when I even think about this.

    Oh, and just to clarify, he doesn't blame a dirty plate on the table on the dogs, just the house being messy in general, my point was that he doesn't understand that this kind of stuff just adds to the messiness and to my chores.

    I attempted to do the strike thing for about 2 days, but then some of my family dropped by & I didn't want them to think I was a bad housekeeper, so I immediately started picking the mess up. Never tried that again, b/c it was driving me nuts anyway.

    I've tried politely reminding him to pick up his clothes, towels, dirty dishes, whatever, but I always feel like I am nagging (probably b/c that's what he tells me) & I don't want to be like that. We will be moving into a new house soon and we've already discussed that we BOTH want it to stay nice & tidy, not spotless where visitors are afraid to come in, but neat & organized. So, I am currently divising a plan w/ baskets and other storage containers to try and accomplish this... I'll let you know how that goes.

    So sorry for the rant... Had to vent a little I guess. :)

    If anyone has any suggestions to my organizing plan, plz feel free to suggest away!

    Thanks for listening!

  • adobesunlight
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    My husband throws things down too when the trash can is maybe a foot away from where he's standing! He'd much rather put it on the counter or even the stovetop in the kitchen than where it's supposed to go! Same with dirty laundry! He falls asleep on the sofa (he has not only sleep apnea, but restless leg syndrome and has had several back surgeries) and so instead of changing clothes in the bedroom and placing dirty laundry in the hamper, he'd much rather toss them over the back of the couch and on the floor!!!!! This drives me insane!!! So out comes the Febreeze once again! ACK!! I don't want the furniture smelling like his workplace!

    Also, he won't part with disposable cigarette lighters when they have run out of fluid. Don't ask me why! I found them by the handfuls in different areas of the house and constantly tossing them out. Guess he's been doing this for a longggggggggg time! That and ink pens, markers, etc. Tons of little screws and other hardware parts are cluttering every drawer in the kitchen. The list goes on......................

  • maryliz
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I have only visited this forum a few times. I saw the subject line on this thread and couldn't resist commenting. I know the main discussion is ooooold, but perhaps this will be useful for someone.

    Here are two ideas:

    housefairy dot org

    and

    flylady dot net

    If you visit these sites you will find simple, practical STRATEGIES for dealing with the clutter and lack of proper housekeeping routines. I have learned a lot from these two sites. I personally recommend them to anyone who feels overwhelmed by housework. If you follow the simple plan, you will start to slowly dig your way out of the mess. It will be a lot of work changing your own habits, and those of your family members--but your reward will be a peaceful, harmonious household. Good luck!

    MaryLiz in Michigan

  • g8rgrad98
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Ladies, it's not limited to just men. My wife routinely leaves cups laying all about, never goes through her mail, leaves clothes piled on the floor, on top of the dresser, in the washer, etc. I've tried it all as well, but she just gets testy if I even bring any of the issues up. For the most part, I've given up. I make my stepson clean up after himself and do some chores (since I do still have some control over him), but have given up on getting the wife to join in.

  • adobesunlight
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Oh, G8 believe me I know!! The post about my husband not picking up after himself should have also stated my shortcomings as well. You have a good point there! I make my own messes, but since I'm the one that has to do the cleaning around here, it's much easier to point the finger on someone else. LOL! Seriously, in most cases we are all to blame! If EVERYONE would pick up after themselves and help out with the household chores and periodically "weed out" old clothes, etc. we wouldn't have a problem. I'm trying to get a handle on it now...."Better late than never", right?

  • sheesh
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Weird! My husband has always been as neat as a pin about himself and most things, and doesn't mind my clutter. He frequently suggests that I need a "system" to manage my stuff: for instance, I misplace my glasses and cell phone several times a day, and he always knows where they are; he collects my coffee cups and puts them in the dishwasher; his laundry is always in the hamper, mine isn't.

    HOWEVER!!! He has always refused to do any home repair or deep-cleaning kinds of stuff, or painting, leak-fixing, etc. Claims he can't use a screwdriver, won't use power tools, and that it is more expensive to call a repairman to fix what he might wreck, so just call Bob the handyman in the first place. Thus, one of our toilets has been leaking for months, and one of the kitchen drawers fell off the track and I have to put up with it. I have several more BobJobs at the moment.

    We have never worked on a home project together, and now that we are both home all day, I find that he is undermining my attempts to get control of the house again. We need to paint, caulk, change the furnace filter, fix the toilet, attack the backyard, clean the gutters - all jobs the kids and I did while he was at work and I worked part time. (Well, not the leaking toilet - that's a BobJob.) He is a writer and poet and silly romantic who charms me with a lovely line or pretty flower or just a sigh about what a nice day it is.

    As for the original post - I figured my kids rooms were their personal places. Once they got old enough, I didn't clean their rooms or do their laundry, and any stuff they left lying around in the common areas I just tossed into their rooms for them to deal with. I would always help with the deep cleans (floors, windows, etc.) though. They usually kept a semblance of order in their rooms and could usually find what they wanted.

    We raised six kids so laundry was a big deal around here, and letting them manage their own was useful. They borrowed each others clothing and were pretty good about finishing the loads they started, probably because what was left in the laundry room was considered common property!

    Sherry

  • mc_hudd
    14 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    G8~ I agree w/ you, it's not only men. However, I also agree w/ Adobesunlight; Yes, sometimes I have little messes here & there that are completely my fault, but I feel like *I* am the one who cleans, so if I want to make a mess, I am entitled. I feel the garage is a good comparison: My fiance doesn't want me out there messing w/ his tools and not putting them back or leaving messes everywhere, but if he wants to, that's completely fine... and I agree w/ him. That is his responsibility to keep clean, so it's not fair for me to add to his work. Just my opinion. :)

  • Lud Leslie
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    READ THIS.

    sorry about English mistakes. Im from Brazil.

    Oh... i did all.. stopped clean for days, box of shame (i really named it), yell, be calm, talking, dividing choirs, putting notes every where...

    The only thing that worked was when i realized that nothing works. Some people are clean, other are mess. Of course, they got a little better, but they will never be how i want them to be

    After realizing that, i dont alow those things to bother me anymore.

    Remember.. " if you cant go against them, go with them". So now i do the same... i only clean when i really feel like... same as for doing laundry, yard work, organizing stuff... we now live better, because instead being mad and always fighting for this matter, i use the time to have good times with them. Of course its not easy, but those times that im about to go through regressions, i take the kids for a walk, or lock my self in my room for a family movie night.... and so on.

    Im happy and My family is happy now.

    When the Queen is happy, there is peace in the kingdom"

  • nettynetty
    last year

    why do men think that we are on this earth to clean after them? that they don’t have to do anything beside go to work! Its beyond me as I am a neat freak and married a slop!!! Sick of it and I’m turned off.

  • Susan Grant
    8 months ago

    I tried this tacktick after 3 days we had no clean pots or clothes and my partner just washed up what he needed a spoon or a bowl and still went to work and let the rest he basically waited me out. Which proved to me that he knew but he didn't care enough to do it. I split from him for a few weeks but went back under agreement he wa gonna start typing up after himself two months on and he's starting to slip back into old habits leaving tools everywhere mugs clothes on the floor ect... I have 3 children and 3 dogs but might as well have 4 children. I feel like the only responsible one in the house and I've turned into a mardy unhappy woman with no life outside dogs kids cleaning. I think you need to have a Frank word with him. Unfortunately I don't think you can change messy people. I hope yours changes and helps you.

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