Post # 1
We just got into a fight because of *my* lack of cleaning. His mother is a CLEAN freak. Like wakes up 2-3 hours early every morning to clean, doesn’t have a TV/cell phone, so she keeps busy busy. She’s wonderful but that’s not me.
He does help around the house but it’s definitely not 50/50 and I cook EVERY night + do all the grocery shopping so I feel like that’s part of my household duties.
He disagrees. He said he could eat sandwiches for the rest of his life if we could have a sparkling clean house. He’s delusional.. Last night, I made ginger glazed salmon, roasted veggies, and french damn macarons. He would die if we became a hamburger helper house.
Anyway- how do we bridge this gap between his expectations from his mother’s household and the reality that I’m a semi-messy person and we need to compromise?
For instance, I printed a fridge checklist and he was refusing to use it because “if we see something dirty, we clean it, we are not little kids..”. I was like “Hows that working out for ya?!”
Post # 3
@sweetdee522: Your dinner sounds fabulous and yummy!
He’s being ridiculous. Tell him if he wants a house as clean as Mommy’s to go live with Mommy. Or clean it his damn self.
Good grief. What is he, the house cleaning police?
Post # 4
I’m toying with the idea of buying a ton of Hungry Man dinners and getting cracked out of coffee and cleaning like crazy. And being insane “Don’t you dare put that drink down without a coaster!!!!!” “Why did you put a blue shirt next to a yellow shirt.. Where’s the order!!”
Post # 5
I think it’s fair to expect him to do a share of the chores to keep the house clean. One thing that worked really well with my husband was making a checklist of all the daily and weekly chores that needed to get done. That let him see how much needed to be done and gave him a sense of accomplishment when he could check something off. In your case, it might also show him how much stuff you are already doing and how he needs to step up.
Post # 6
@sweetdee522: Bahaha! That would serve him right. 😉
Edit: Then later when he wants some lovin’ tell him you’re way too tired for that from all the cleaning.
Post # 7
Unfortunately, people are brought up to think a certain scenario is how things should be, whether it be the exact opposite of their family or the exact same. It will take time to get him to see reason, be patient.
Post # 8
- Wedding: November 2011 - Florida Aquarium
We’re pretty laid back about how things get done. We’ve lived together for three years, so our routine fell into place. I cook, he does the dishes. I feed and water all our pets, he changes the ferrets’ potty pads. Rita the Roomba does the sweeping downstairs, I vacuum upstairs. He cleans the potties, I clean the showers. I dust, he takes out the trash. I’ll admit, our house isn’t spotless, but it definitely passes. Everything else, we use teamwork.
…and I guarantee, one week of you not cooking will turn him around so quickly, you won’t even believe it!
Post # 9
I say you make him a PBJ sandwich for dinner ever night for a week…or better yet, let him make his own damn sandwich!
Post # 10
Oh my god, are you with my ex? His mom worked full time, cooked dinner every night, and kept the house spotless. He expected me to do that same (on top of going to school full time + homework)! HA.
Post # 11
I am the cleaner in our relationship. I have learned that I cannot expect FI to clean up to my standards – that goes for quality and timing wise. You and your FI need to compromise – he cannot expect you to clean as his mother does. If he wants it done then he needs to clean it himself!
I have let go of expecting my FI to clean when and how I wnat him to. Instead, I asked him to please contain his mess to 1 room – the bedroom. This has cut down on clothes being thrown all over the house (baby steps!)
I do a majority of the cleaning because I just think it’s easier to do it myself then to argue about it (I’m not resentful, I like cleaning but I can see how someone could become resentful using my “solution”).
I praise him when he helps me (even when he doesn’t do it “right” or “up to my standards”). Then, I let it go or go clean up “betteR” behind him (but not usually because I don’t want him to give up trying completely).
He’s messier and I have just learned to accept it. I don’t want to be a nag every time he lives his dishes out. He’s a grown man and has been living on his own for a long time. I’d just rather not fight about this stuff.
His messiness has calmed me a bit (i used to be an ocd obsessive cleaner) so I try and embrace a little mess here and there. Our house always looks great when we have people over so it’s okay to be messy! There are more important things in life, and I’d rather spend our weekends enjoying our time together then cleaning up all day long. Cleaning is for the winter! 😉
Maybe you can show this post to your FI?!
By the way – I cook every night and he MUST help with the dishes (at least stand in the kitchen with me and keep me company!) He knows better now than to be anywhere but in the kitchen after dinner. When we used to have the I cook you clean arrangement, he didn’t do the dishes for days! This arrangement works out much better for me!)
Post # 12
Is the issue here that you don’t want to be held to his standard of cleanliness? Or that you are willing to live up to that standard but only if he does half?
I have a semi-similar situation in that my husband is wayyyyyy more of a neat freak than me. But I don’t really mind as long as he does half. We did have some fights at first because I was definitely doing more, then he’d criticize something I didn’t do and I’d be like WTF I do way more than you if you want it done, DO IT. What worked for us was really writing out all of the stuff that needs to be done, because he honestly had no idea how much I do when he isn’t looking. Once he understood that, and agreed to do half– he really did start helping more and ALSO was far less critical when something wasn’t “right” because regardless— keeping the house clean was “our” job NOT my job.
If you just disagree with his standard of cleanliness I think that is slightly harder, but you will just have to try to negotiate to a middle ground you can both live with. I understand not wanting to feel like you live in a museum… maybe he just needs to be reminded that it is your house too and you don’t need a parent there telling you to pick up after yourself?
Post # 13
Oh, this is easy…I would hire a cleaning lady and have him billed…VOILA!
Post # 14
Ugh, I hate the phrase “help out” when it’s applied to men and cleaning. That implies they’re doing you some sort of favor, when it’s just as much his responsibility as yours!
I think you need to sit down with him when you’re both calm (not when there’s been a recent blowup about it) and each person write down (or say out loud) what seems like a fair division of labor, and then try to figure out a system that plays to each of your strengths.
Post # 15
My husband and I sat down and honestly (and unemotionally) discussed what chores we don’t mind doing and what we consider clean. It isn’t always followed and has since been adjusted, but it was a starting point. The most important part was to do it when we weren’t upset and we can honestly say “I really want a clean house and I want to do it myself–it is worth the time to me” and he can say “I don’t like cleaning and would prefer to hire someone than dust, but I enjoy maintaining the outside and fixing things”. It isn’t equal, but we are happy with it.
What you may want to take away from that is: if a sparkling clean house is that important to him, you won’t stand in his way of hiring a cleanng service.
Post # 16
I was in the same boat as you kinda. When we moved in together he just had the mindset they household duties are the womans… the bills are the mans. (Im ALL for that..) but i was also working 50 hrs a week and paying half the bills. I had enough and i told him im not a slave, if i was paying half the bills he was gonna do half the house work, that didnt fly with him, soooo i said FINE YOUR PAYING ALL THE BILLS and the housework will be my duties. Well after a few months of him paying all the bills he realized that he did need part of my income, and then he decided to start helping out around the house.