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any magical words for converting my packrat dh?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
the crap is just piling up and he balks at the suggestion of getting rid of anything. we have so much stuff it is suffocating me.
post #2 of 4
start by teasing him tell him you are going to declutter throw out stuff, give him one area for just his stuff - a workroom, the garage, part of the basement...then start in on getting him to be real with his crap
post #3 of 4
It has taken a while but my hubby has finally seen the light. I started small. Stuff I knew he didn't care about as much. Then I started limiting him as to where he could put it. Once in a while I would make us get organized and he would have to condense and slowly but surely more and more stuff ended up gone. Then I started just not picking up stuff because I told him that it was pointless for me to pick up and clean the kitchen, living room etc because even when I was done it was messy because of all his garbage. He finally realized he doesn't like to live in a pigsty and has gotten much better. I am not anal but he almost is now. It's hard and sometimes I questioned myself because I don't want to be a controlling nag but sheesh I don't think I should have to live like that. Also being a SAHM I was the one who had to look at it all day and I told him it really depressed me and it really did to the point I didn't do anything because I didn't want to look at it. I just laid in bed not wanting to get up because then I would have to look at it. Good luck!!
post #4 of 4
I've told my extreme-packrat DH before that I'm just going to purge his stuff if he doesn't do it. He never does (he keeps every $2 receipt, crumpled in pockets of course - and wants to hang on to T-shirts with huge holes in them, etc.) so on the rare, rare occasion where I actually do some decluttering, I just throw out the completely useless or simply nasty stuff. Then later I tell him about it and he's always fine with it. Of course I'd never throw out anything of real sentimental value.

He does the same thing for me, actually - I'm not quite as bad of a packrat, but I assign 'sentimental value' to everything and so have trouble parting with items that really need to go. For example, my grandma who is now deceased gave us a toaster oven for our wedding 5 years ago. It conked on us about a year ago and I just couldn't get rid of it, so it sat and sat on the counter. DH finally just took it and got rid of it without telling me he was going to do so. I was hugely relieved when he told me...I knew that we had to get rid of it but I just couldn't do it.

I don't know if this dynamic would work for everyone, but we both understand each other's clutter tendencies and so we trust each other to help us through our hardest decluttering issues!

But we have come to this understanding over years of practice. When we got married my DH's biggest piece of packrat clutter was...an 1984 Mazda . It would barely run and was just gross, but he parked it in our designated parking spot for 2 years while we had to search for street parking to park our usable car! : He finally got rid of it (donated it) and cried the day he did! But it took 2 years of that car sitting there, windows broken, obviously never going to be driven again...for him to decide on his own to junk it. I should have just arranged the pickup myself; he'd probably have been relieved like I was with the toaster oven.
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