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How do you get dh on board?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
I periodically go on a seek and purge mission in the house- clutter pretty much ruins my mood on a regular basis but I feel like I'm the only one in the family who actively does anything about it. I talk with dh about it, he knows how it makes me feel (anxious and panicky) and does his best to help with housework (he works rather fewer outside hours than I do) but it's like piles of clutter just don't register with him somehow.

Lately, after reading the simple living threads, I've been pondering larger things we could do without and I approached him about getting rid of a dorm fridge we have out in the garage that is an adjunct of his "pub" (he's a homebrewer and has a little bit of a bar set up out there). This fridge basically stores 1) various microbrews other people have gifted him with that just sit in there forever because they're forgotten about or not as interesting as whatever he as on tap 2) half a sticky jar of maraschino cherries 3) half a jar of aging juice from whatever the cocktail du jour was at the last gathering.

I thought the conversation was going well because he agreed that it was really a waste of space and electricity... until he suggested that maybe we could get rid of it and get a BIGGER one that was more functional and could store "overflow" from the fridge in the kitchen. !!! The only time we have overflow is when we've lost track of stuff and need to clean out the fridge. Argh.

So- I think part of the issue is that I ebb and flow with how urgently I need to declutter- I go to work, come home wiped out- don't address anything for a day or two and while I'm at home he's at work and vice versa so there's nothing consistent happening. I'm still very much in the process of creating new habits for myself and I would love for us both to be on the same page with this instead of feeling like I have to do it all on my own. Have any of you been able to change how the family works around decluttering and simplifying instead of having to be the sole shrew who gets mad over and over again?
post #2 of 5
There's a chapter in "It's All Too Much" that deals with partners. But realistically I'm still the one whom clutter bothers more.
You should get dh to agree to an experiment--unplug the fridge in the garage and see what kind of a difference it makes on your electric bill.
(You have to take baby steps.....get him to unplug it, get him to move it, get him to get rid of it.)
post #3 of 5
Baby steps...it is really hard. It didn't hit my DH until he went to kick a toy out of his way (which wasn't put away) and then it went through a plate glass window. His little kick ended up costing us $150 to replace. He has been somewhat on board since then.
post #4 of 5
I am finally coming to terms with "if it bothers me, I have to be the one to do it". However - my DH helps out a ton around the house, does most of the cleaning and lots of the cooking.

For example, his job is the garbage on tuesday nights. He will take out the kitchen garbage, and run the trash cans to the street.

In my opinion, this is a half-a$$ job. He does not get the basement, bedroom, or bathroom trash. He also does not grab the stuff that he "temporarily" stores in the garage or the basement "until next trash day". It drives me insane - I want ALL of the trash out each week!

So after several years of not saying anything, and then several months of me giving hints, then complaints, I gave up. On Tuesdays, my 4yo and I play "upstairs trash guy" and we collect all of the trash around the house, and put it in the kitchen trash can.

Voila! No more arguments, no more trash.

So - if your hubby does lots of other stuff, maybe you could be the de-clutter person!

My DH will do the vacuuming, but I have to get the stuff out of the way first. So - maybe your hubby will take over some other cleaning task, if you keep the clutter at bay.

Good luck mama!
post #5 of 5
Lists.

We find that if I sit down and make lists of specific things that need to be done, DH is happy to go through his list, and do things one by one, with fairly specific instructions.
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