(Closed) Dealing with missing life skills

posted 6 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
1460 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

All I can say is bless your heart for being so patient.  I would have lost my mind by now.  I could literally feel my jaw clenching as I read your post.

There is definitely something wrong.  Has he ever been diagnosed with any disorders?

Post # 4
5494 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2011

Get a maid.  they’ve saved many many relationships.

Are there household things he is good at?  You don’t have to split things up by room. Maybe isolate a few things he can do or he can learn and have him do those few, safe things.  

Post # 5
693 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@OctBride-2012:  me, too. I had to read this aloud to Darling Husband. I’m interested to read replies.

Post # 6
778 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I work with adults with autism and learning disabilities.  I know it’s personal, but is he diagnosed with any sort of developmental disability or learning disability?  If so, he could qualify for residential habilitation, which would be someone coming into the home to teach him ADL (activities of daily living) skills.  The services are free, and I think it would help save your relationship.

If it were my fiance, I would hold off the wedding until he has a more firm grasp on these skills.  It may seem minor now, but later on in your relationship, it could really make or break things.  


Post # 7
5778 posts
Bee Keeper

Are you sure he isn’t deliberately pretending he can’t do those things just so he doesn’t have to do them at all?  Many men have been known to sabotage the splitting up of household chores under the guise of not doing them as well as you do. Right.

Is it worth getting an ulcer over? Can you give him things to do so you feel like he’s contributing but that he can’t botch up or drive you insane about? How about grocery shopping? Is he capable of that at least?


Post # 8
746 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

Wow, I’ve never heard of a situation like this. I don’t have any advice, just a question: are you guys planning on having children? How does he act around kids? Would he be a danger to them as well?

Post # 9
1021 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Do you know how he handled similar situations when he lived on his own? Was there a cleaning/organizing method that worked for him then? 

It sounds like you have been extremely patient. I lived with an ex-boyfriend who wasn’t good at keeping a clean house, so I took charge of all the cleaning and he took care of other things around the house (like handyman type stuff). Would that kind of situation work for you two?

Has he been diagnosed with any kind of developmental disability? It seems like if you could pinpoint the problem that way, finding a solution might be easier. 

Post # 10
3126 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2017

Darling Husband cannot clean to my level of satisfaction so we don’t even try. He will “pick up” but otherwise takes on tasks I would rather not do- such as cooking, yard work, ect. I like the pantry organized a certain way, so he goes grocery shopping with our money and our grocery list, brings all the groceries in, and leaves them for me to put away in their specified areas. He tries to help with dishes but I am usually faster and more efficient- but when he tries, if he puts them away incorrectly, I just fix it when he isn’t around instead of nagging him about it.

I would try and redistribute duties and have him pick things (or give him things) that he can handle or that he wants to do.

Post # 11
4046 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I understand where you are coming from, a bit, because I have relatives like this. Super smart but absentminded and domestically illiterate. I think the biggest problem with your FH is that he is not safety conscious. Also sounds like he is perhaps so frustrated with ineptitude he just gives up.

One suggestion, clear out any clutter or excess junk. If you can’t put your kitchen stuff away, get some shelves or more storage or get rid of things so there are no excess glass jars to shove somewhere.

Can you hire someone to clean correctly, so neither of you have to?

How did he manage before you moved in together?

The only way I know this gets better is to have someone sit down and really try to learn it. He has to bewilling to learn, and it won’t be easy, especially for someone smart. But mostly he has to be willing to think through the consequences of his actions- for example with the boiling water or not putting dangerous things above your head. You need to think of basic safety rules adn he has to learn them.

Post # 12
5956 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2018

Look, in a perfect world every chore a couple does would be fairly split between the two of them…in the real world we do what we’re best at so we don’t have to waste our time trying to turn Mr. Beautiful Mind into Marry Poppins.  If this is the only problem you’ve got, count your lucky stars and call Merry Maids.  Leave a hamper in each room for him to put shit in and you can put it away.  Quit trying to make him do things he doesn’t want to and find a way for him to contribute to the household in a way that he’s good at.

Post # 13
1230 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

@Nona99:  good advice!

Post # 14
915 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

@MissTatas:  +1

Having rooms seems a little over the top for me. What about just asking him to vacuum, dust….

Post # 15
908 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@OctBride-2012:  +1

My jaw was clenching as well. This isn’t just “he doesn’t clean exactly like I want him to”, it’s clearly something bigger. It would be somewhat crazymaking for me. 

For instance, I fold all my Fi and my clothes because I hate the way he does it. But it’s not that he has no concept of how to do it, so we compromised and I’m in charge of it. He’s in charge of taking the trash and recycling out, etc. 

Post # 16
11747 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

no offense but you sound like the cleaning police.  If he isn’t cleaning to your standards, then you need to do it. This has been a life saving lesson in my relationship. I cannot expect Fiance to clean to my standards. I cannot criticize him for helping me because it’s not up to my standards.  Therefore, I do end up doing the majority of the cleaning because I have high standards for it and would rather have it done my way.  I also do the nitty gritty work that guys just don’t “get” or care about (think baseboards!).  FI vacuums and does the dishes when I cook. He’ll help me wash windows, weed, etc. He does his own laundry and I do my own. 

I think you need to have more realistic expectations. I cannot reiterate enough that you cannot expect him to become the ultimate cleaner that you are.  Give him tasks he does well or the ones you don’t care that much if they don’t get done well all the time.  

I cannot imagine calling my wedding off because my Fiance is a shitty cleaner.  

Lastly, I think you should just hire a cleaning person. It’s not that expensive. 

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