May 17, 2014 11:49 AM Subscribe
Having a part practical/part relationship with my husband that boils down to the fact that I love him but I don't love his stuff, and I want to live with him but I don't want to live with his stuff. I'm asking because it's been 5 years and nothing has changed and I literally don't know what to do to solve the problem of constantly living in clutter and filth.
posted by bleep to Human Relations (45 answers total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
It's hard to talk to him about it because he has this "love me/love my stuff" belief and when he hears "She wants to get rid of my stuff" he immediately jumps to "She wants to get rid of me" and then he gets all angry and defensive. It's not true but it's turning into a self-fulfilling prophecy. Because the consequence is that our apartment is a filthy disgusting mess because every time I start to clean (which never gets past the bagging up trash phase anymore) I make a little progress until I come upon an ugly, dusty, useless item that can't be used, thrown out or stored (because naturally all the closets are packed) or even piled up and I lose all will to go on, knowing that as long as I can't reduce the amount of things, this place can never be clean. So what's the point. I'm in therapy, and I hooked him up with a therapist but he hasn't gone yet.
He has chronic pain which severely limits his mobility and energy. For this reason he legitimately can't work. We're planning on this being fixed this year, but nothing is guaranteed.
I work from home (from the couch, because the only suitable workspace is piled with stuff.)
We're planning on moving for my job in the Fall.
He's against hiring someone to help in any way. I would love some help. Any help.
I also run out of stamina fairly quickly.
Admittedly I also have stuff in piles, but that's because there's no place to store it. I could get rid of everything I own and the problem wouldn't be solved. He's older than me and has a lifetime of stuff.
We live in a 3rd floor walk up with no laundry, dishwasher, garbage disposal, garbage shoot, elevator, etc. everything has to be hauled up and down by hand. Therefore most of our energy is taken up just with laundry and dishes and taking out the garbage, which are all piling up because we're both depressed.
I know this is a lot but my question is that I want a clean house but I don't know what to do to make that happen. I also worry about having to pack all this stuff up eventually when we move.