(Closed) living with a clean freak – division of labor

posted 6 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
267 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

@Kate0558:  Darling Husband & I are opposite in this situation, with me being the OCD clean freak.  I have to say that it only works because we both had to realize where the other person is coming from.  DH doesn’t care if his shorts are on the bedroom floor or if his towel isn’t hung up exactly straight, but things like that bother me. So I take the initiative to fix them. He doesn’t care if his papers are a mess all over the counter, so we compromised and he gets to put his stuff inside a nearby cabinet, organized or not, because that’s his space (out of sight, out of mind for me! :)).  I’m not sure if this will help you at all, but compromise is key – you have to respect each other’s ideas of cleanliness and try to come to some sort of agreement about who does what and when.  

Post # 4
9139 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

The best solution is to clean it as best as you can and if he doesn’t like it then he can finish the job.  Everybody has different ideas of clean and this is a standard issue in many relationships.  My dad was like this and ultimately it ended up being emotional abuse towards me and my mom because the house was never perfectly clean enough.  A piece of lint on the floor would send him into a tirade.  It may be OCD and it may be an indication of other issues he has with control in your home or your relationship.  Maybe it would be a good idea to sit down and find out why everything has to be so clean and perfect.

Post # 5
5093 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2012

I had a psycho roommate like that.  She would completely clean out the fridge – I mean take everything out and spray Lysol all over the entire interior until it sparkled – every two weeks.  She would freak out over all the “food trash” I had in my room…  She was referring to empty water bottles.

We are no longer friends, and we haven’t spoken since the day she moved out.  She was a psycho.  I know for a fact that I could never live like that again.

It’s all about communication and compromise.  How willing are you both to compromise?  If you can do it, great.  You’ll both have to keep up your ends of the bargain, though.  If you can’t…  Well, I hope things turn out better than with me and my psychobitch roommate.

Post # 6
1332 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@catnip:  THIS!  I was going to the say the same thing essentially 🙂

I am the OCD neat freak…he has a more laid back approach!!  Knowing he cannot change his behaviors, and knowing I cannot change how I feel, I have accepted my ‘role’ as the one that cleans up after him – essentially.  I accept, and thereafter do not complain that I am the one cleaning the house, tidying up, etc bc in doing that I ensure it is getting done ‘right’ and ‘my way’.  Has he tried to ‘help’? YES, but it was always ‘not good enough’, and then it always caused a fight. 

The compromise, for me/us, was that he had to do his part to keep his ‘messes’ organized, lol.  Case and point…we have a paper shelf in the house…a place to throw our keys, mails, coupons, etc.  As long as he ‘throws’ his stuff in the right pile on the shelf, I will be the one to organize it/make it look pretty in the proper filing compartment bc the piles drive me bananas by days end!  Or, the closests that are all organized with baskets, etc (again, I AM CRA-ZY, lol), if he can just put things that go in the closet(s) on a shelf, I will then organzie it into the proper baskets.  Or, I bought over the door hanger hooks for clothes.  I can live with him putting his clothes on those hooks – whereever he feels to put them – as long as they are not on the floor.  IF HE CAN JUST DO THOSE ‘things’ I PROMISE TO NEVER COMPLAIN 🙂

And finally, with all this said, I find the biggest compromise made was he handles the outside ‘cleaning’, and I will do the inside – end of story.  He will never complain that I do not mow the lawn, and I will never complain he does not mop the floor!

Hope this helps!

Post # 7
458 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

I’m a very clean person and I’ve taught Darling Husband to be very clean too. Once you get in the habit of doing something (like putting everything away for 15 minutes before bed), you just do it and it’s not hard.

I’m not sure that a neat freak and a messy person can live together. They both would feel like the other person doesn’t care about them or their feelings. Literally if Darling Husband makes a huge mess and leaves it for me to clean, it makes me feel like he didn’t care about me, that I’m not as important and am supposed to be his maid. I also have found that the more I clean and keep things tidy, the tidier Darling Husband is.

Post # 9
2781 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

He’s a bit obsessive about the cleaning at times, but we never leave things lying around either. We both always put dirty dishes beside the sink, rinsed to await washing, dirty laundry always goes into laundry baskets, and when we’re done with something we put it away.

If I take out a book, i put it back when I’m finished with it, for example. So we never let things get to a point they need to actually be cleaned. We always wipe off counters and the table after dinner or while I’m in the process of the prep work, if we spill something on the floor it doesn’t sit there waiting to be cleaned up.

It’s just really basic not being lazy, it takes seconds to put a dirty dish in sink or dishwasher, a dirty sock in laundry basket, or to wipe off the counter while cooking. 

I used to work in the Food service industry, so I’m big on “cleaning as you go”. I have a tendency to do the prepwork on supper, and then while it’s cooking do dishes from the prep work, so when all is said and done the only dirty dishes left are very minimal, and those get rinsed and either washed right away or left for when i make the next meal and washed with those dishes. 

Post # 10
5956 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2018

Hire a maid, SHE cleans everything, Mr. Tidy can pay for it, everyone is happy…also, if his OCD surrounding this issue is starting to generate anxiety, he needs some theraputic intervention and exposure therapy, otherwise the disorder will continue to erode his ability to cope with situations that are not “ideal”. 

Your not doing anything wrong, and neither is he, if it’s truly a sypmtom of his OCD, it’s his responsibility to ensure that HIS problem doesn’t become YOUR problem too

Post # 11
1137 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

@Nona99:  We did this, only my Darling Husband fired the maid because she didn’t clean well enough for him!!! HAHA!

Now he needs to find a new one or he’s going to be the one scrubbing the toilets!


Post # 13
418 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

I’m the OCD clean freak, thanks to my parents.  LOL.  My fiance for the most part is very clean, except that he ALWAYS leaves his muddy boots by the damn door, lol.  Truthfully, I don’t expect him to do anything around the house on a daily/weekly basis.  When I ask him to do something, he will do it and fotunately for me he does it right because he’s a perfectionist.  I usually do all the house work.  But I’m a firm believer that if you clean every single day, you never get overwhelmed because your house doesn’t get filthy.  That and everything has a home, put it back.  lol.

Post # 14
4605 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

FH is more a clean freak than I am. I have never been good at cleaning and organizing and luckily FH was ok with that from the get go. We usually clean up after ourselves, but we each have chores that we each take care of. FH does the litter box, the dishes and he usually sweeps. I do the cooking, the laundry and I mop and vacuum. 

Of course if I’m really busy with studying or something FH will take care of everything. He likes things to be clean. 

Post # 15
119 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

@catnip:  Agreed!

I can be OCD about cleaning but I also didn’t want to be taken advantage of. For example! If he knows I’m going to move his towel from the bedroom door back to to the hook in the bathroom because it bothers me then he’ll always have a towel hanging in the bathroom for him. BUT if I leave it there, he’s SOL… (actually he uses mine and then I give him crap for it, but that’s another story!) Anyway, I’ve tried those tricks and it helped temporarily but not long term. : / It’s better to just talk about the issues, pick your battles and see where you can compromise.

Post # 16
6221 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House

My Fiance has way higher standards with cleaning than I do, so I made a schedule of when things should be cleaned and stick to it, to make sure that everything gets cleaned before it gets to the point where I think it’s dirty. It’s worked pretty well so far. I like the one from pinterest with the swing day and daily/weekly chores.

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