How often should I have to do laundry for a household of just two people? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 20 Old 07-17-2011, 12:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I currently do laundry once per week. Due to efforts to minimize the amount of laundry we have to do (because it's expensive), I usually only need to do two or three loads... but that equates to about one or maaaayyyybe two loads for you guys who have in-home laundry machines, since we're using these tiny coin-op laundry machines that only hold about half as much laundry.

 

But DP is of the opinion that we should do laundry more often (by which he means I should do laundry more often). His complaint is that the dirty laundry is overflowing onto the floor a few days before laundry day comes around. We don't have an actual laundry hamper; we've been improvising with a plastic trashcan that holds quite a bit less. Since he just bought a laundry basket (also too small for a week of laundry on its own), I suggested we just use both containers. But he would have none of that.

 

I'm thinking of telling him to stuff it, but I figured I'd ask you guys for advice first.

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#2 of 20 Old 07-17-2011, 12:05 PM
 
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We do laundry once a week as well. Last year our unit broke and we had to go to the coin-op, so I feel your pain. I think a few mesh laundry bags hanging in the bedroom, bathroom, closet are a lot cheaper than your time spent at the coin-op.

 

If it matters that much to him, he can do a second trip to the coin-op, in my opinion.

 

(There's a coin-op in my area that's actually called "Wife-Savor", which should offend me but instead makes me laugh. My husband does all the laundry in our house)

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#3 of 20 Old 07-18-2011, 05:53 AM
 
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I do laundry once a week for 6 of us. Unless he has a more valid reason (like clean clothes for work) then YOU go choose a laundry bin that is big enough (maybe it is just the unsightly mess of overflowing bin?) and tell him to stuff it.

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#4 of 20 Old 07-18-2011, 12:12 PM
 
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I'd go to dollar tree and get another laundry basket. One for darks and one for lights. Sort as you go. If he still wants you to do it twice a week, then let him know he is free to take over the job at any time if he isn't happy with the way you do it.

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#5 of 20 Old 07-18-2011, 09:32 PM
 
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Really?? Your husband would not want to see my laundry explosion at the moment then. However, getting another basket or 2 isnt a huge deal.  Of course your husband is welcome to go to the laundry room/mat any time he so wishes


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#6 of 20 Old 07-18-2011, 09:36 PM
 
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The laundromat doesn't discriminate.  Men and women are equally welcome to operate the machines.

 

Seriously, grown men can wash clothes.  


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#7 of 20 Old 07-19-2011, 04:37 AM
 
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Before DS was born we sometimes got away with doing laundry only once a month!!! (Now it's like once a day lol)

But, I would not be OK with laundry spilling all over the floor, no matter how often you wash -- I'd find another container or think about re-wearing clothes if you can't make it 'til laundry day without making a mess... but I do tend to be anal about things like that lol. Overflowing once in a great while might be OK but not every week. But I totally take responsibility for my issue with that & make sure our laundry bin is big enough AND hiding in a closet so I never have to see laundry everywhere.

And yeah... my DH nearly always does the laundry, so... I'd start complaining to your DP that other people's partners actually pitch in instead of just complaining about it... or that he is welcome to go to the store or post on freecycle or whatever for a second container if the mess bothers him.

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#8 of 20 Old 07-19-2011, 05:02 AM
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when we had our in home washer -- as we do now -- it's every 2-4 days. 

 

i've recently taken up hand washing (for a variety of reasons -- including using less power -- and the process takes me about 30 minutes per day in the AM. I soak overnight our outfits from that day (since we change into our PJs), and then in the AM, i rinse, then add water and vinegar/lavender oil/baking soda (and let it all dissolve into the water), then add the clothes back in. Then I gently squeeze the water through the clothes (agitating) for about 15-20 minutes.

 

To wring the clothes out, you simply lay them on a towel and roll the towel up, pressing as you go, and then line dry the clothes from there (yes, you can line dry indoors). We line dry out of doors because we can.

 

I thought I could never do without a washing machine -- and I admit i've added a 30 minute chore to my life (i do use my washing machine's spin cycle instead of towel-wringing my clothes) -- but I'm doing ok so far.

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#9 of 20 Old 07-19-2011, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hahah, thanks for the feedback, guys. I'm still getting the hang of this whole "adulthood" thing, so I wanted to make sure I wasn't just crazy. When DP first suggested we do laundry more, my first thought was, "OMG, you mean laundry is supposed to be even harder than this?!?!?"

 

 

Quote:
I'd go to dollar tree and get another laundry basket.

 

Quote:
However, getting another basket or 2 isnt a huge deal.

 

Quote:
 I'd find another container or think about re-wearing clothes if you can't make it 'til laundry day without making a mess... 

 

 

The weird thing is that this conversation occurred right after DP walked in with a new laundry basket (bought for the purpose of transporting laundry to the laundry room, since the bag we had for that purpose is falling apart). Neither that nor our old container would hold enough laundry to last the whole week, but both of them combined can. So we don't even need a new container now! But when I suggested, "Hey, now we can use this and the green bucket, and the laundry won't be all over the floor anymore!", that's when DP said (after a slight pause for thinking of a diplomatic way to disagree with me), "...I think we should just do laundry more often."

 

DP has these bulky khaki(?) pants that take up a lot of space in the bucket. He was out shopping/biking last time I started the laundry, and he took a shower right when he came home, meaning the laundry bucket contained ONLY one suit of his clothes. It was already like 3/4 quarters full!!! (Okay, with some stuffing, I could probably get it to take less space, but still!)

 

But I must admit that part of the laundry-on-the-floor problem was because we do re-wear clothes, and I put my "not freshly washed, but not dirty enough to need washing before I wear it again" clothes on the floor. (Not next to the hamper, or I'd get them mixed up!) I don't know where I'm supposed to put them. I guess I'll just start putting them with my "fresh" clothes and try to get in the habit of sniff-testing everything I'll be wearing in public. What do you guys do with clothes you re-wear? (I disagree with DP's policy of putting not-quite-dirty clothes in the same hamper as the dirty clothes and still re-wearing them.)

 

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#10 of 20 Old 07-20-2011, 03:54 AM
 
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I usually put my clothes to re-wear back with everything else, but yeah, I do have to be extra vigilant when I get dressed to make sure no stains or smell snuck through!! You could also clear out a small drawer that would be just for those things you'll re-wear, so at least they aren't mixed in with everything.

My DH has giant clothes too, we ended up getting a bigger hamper and that helped, and the hamper is in the closet so we can fill it over the brim quite a bit without it looking messy.

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#11 of 20 Old 07-20-2011, 04:26 AM
 
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Before DD, I did laundry once a week. You can tell your DP that I do laundry twice a week and I have a child in cloth diapers. SInce its just the two of you, you shouldnt need to do it as often as a family of three.

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#12 of 20 Old 07-20-2011, 11:41 AM
 
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A lot of people do hooks for those in between clothes. I put them back because I figure if they are clean enough to rewear, they are clean enough to inter-mingle with clean stuff. But I don't tend to rewear shirts with a toddler. I tend to go through a couple of shirts a day. Seriously though, I would just tell him next time he says it should be more often, "OK, I do laundry on ___day. Would you like to do a load every ___day? You don't need to be mean about it or anything, but you can nicely stand your ground and let him know that you aren't willing to do it more than once a week.

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#13 of 20 Old 07-22-2011, 06:25 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyllya View Post


The weird thing is that this conversation occurred right after DP walked in with a new laundry basket (bought for the purpose of transporting laundry to the laundry room, since the bag we had for that purpose is falling apart). Neither that nor our old container would hold enough laundry to last the whole week, but both of them combined can. So we don't even need a new container now! But when I suggested, "Hey, now we can use this and the green bucket, and the laundry won't be all over the floor anymore!", that's when DP said (after a slight pause for thinking of a diplomatic way to disagree with me), "...I think we should just do laundry more often."


Ah, how I love the "Royal WE"!  I'd consider making a deal with him. If he really wants laundry done more often, either he can do a laundry run each week in addition to yours, or maybe there's something else you could trade for in the house? Like he does more dishes, or cleans the bathroom?  Personally, I don't mind doing laundry, but DH hates it. But there's plenty of other chores I hate, so we just work it out between the two of us. As long as I feel like we are sharing household responsibilities equally overall, we are both much happier.

 

And to answer your original question, I usually do laundry once per week, but I do tend to re-wear a lot of my clothes. But as soon as baby gets here in the next few weeks, I doubt I'll ever be a once-per-week-laundry person again. Sigh!

 


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#14 of 20 Old 07-27-2011, 11:21 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkksmom View Post

A lot of people do hooks for those in between clothes.
Yep - hooks!
 
, "OK, I do laundry on ___day. Would you like to do a load every ___day? You don't need to be mean about it or anything, but you can nicely stand your ground and let him know that you aren't willing to do it more than once a week.


This! Right on sista!
 

 


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#15 of 20 Old 07-30-2011, 07:26 PM
 
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when it was two of us I did laundry once a week, and when it was three of us and we were using coin-op laundry I did laundry once a week (it was like 6 loads, sometimes up to 9, but I still only did it once a week). 

 

and I have a certain spot where I put to be worn again clothes, not on the floor or with the dirty laundry, not with the clean laundry. 


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#16 of 20 Old 09-18-2011, 01:20 AM
 
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Laundry once a week is pretty usual. I did 3 loads for 4 of us once a week - white&light/ dark/ linens&towels. When the two kids were babies I did an extra load of diapers one more time per week but technically, I had enough diapers to last a full week. Sometimes I had a washer at home and sometimes not. It was the same amount of loads in either location.

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#17 of 20 Old 09-18-2011, 07:24 AM
 
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The last time I had to use coin-op laundry we were a family of 5, and dh had a job that left his work clothes heinous.  I did laundry once a week.  I had separate baskets for dh's work clothes, towels/kitchen rags, sheets, kids clothes, adult clothes, and diapers.  It was usually 10 loads of stuff, and our baskets were full to bursting, but there's no way I'd have gone more often. 

 

If he's not happy with the set-up you guys currently have, he needs to offer up a more reasonable solution than to demand you add another chore to your week.  Perhaps you need separate baskets for your clothes and his clothes so he can feel free to wash his things as often as he wants/needs to and you likewise.

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#18 of 20 Old 09-19-2011, 07:57 AM
 
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Personally, I sort my laundry right away into reds, lights, darks, whites and whites that can take high temperatures (like towels and sheets) and sensitive items like bras and woollen sweaters that need special treatment. I have these rather small baskets, that hold as much as my machine can take. So when a basket is filled up, it is time to wash. Simple as that. Generally, in our household of four adults that amounts to about one machine every 2nd day to keep on top of things, and to make sure needed items are washed. So, about 3-4 machines a week for a household of four...which will hold true even when I finally get to marry my fiancé because of the way I sort the laundry.

 

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#19 of 20 Old 09-20-2011, 02:40 AM
 
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When it was just dh and I we did laundry once a week - one light load, one dark load and one load of sheets and towels. We had two average sized laundry baskets - one for light and one for dark - and we would just strip the bed and scoop the towels and sheets into the baskets as we headed for the laundry room in the building we lived in.

 

We have always had hooks on the back of our bedroom and bathroom doors. In the bathroom we hang PJ's and bathrobes and in the bedroom we hang clothes we plan to wear again before washing. It keeps those things off the floor and out of the dresser and closet where they might make everything else smell stale. We spent about $2 for hooks that fit over the back of the door at the Dollar Store.

 

Even though you already have containers, if they aren't really working for you it might be worthwhile to replace them. We now have our own washing machine and I bought baskets that when full, hold just the right amount for one load of laundry. That lets me know when it is time to throw in a load - no overflow and it is clear when laundry needs to be done.

 

I completely agree with others here that if your dh wants laundry done more often, he should start doing it. Is he someone who has always had someone else taking care of his laundry for him? Some men - and women - have always had someone else take care of the work that makes their lives more comfortable and don't really understand what goes into having a clean home, clean clothes, etc. There is nothing wrong with him wanting to have fresh clothes twice a week but there IS something wrong with his expectation that you make that happen for him. Laundry isn't difficult but it is a nuisance. That is life. 

 

I am a big advocate of setting things up to make chores easier. If that means spending $10 to buy some hooks and laundry baskets that work for you, it is $10 well spent for organizing your home and minimizing conflict and resentment in your relationship. It doesn't seem fair to me if your DP is saying that you should just be using one laundry hamper that isn't big enough for your needs and it should contain all of the laundry and that you should be washing the clothes whenever it overflows. Either he deals with the reality most people live with of having a couple of adequately sized laundry baskets or he takes it upon himself to go to the laundromat at least half of the time when the basket he wants you both to use gets full. You can be kind in how you state this but he needs to be kind and fair in his expectaions too!

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#20 of 20 Old 09-20-2011, 05:03 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shantimama View Post

 

I am a big advocate of setting things up to make chores easier. If that means spending $10 to buy some hooks and laundry baskets that work for you, it is $10 well spent for organizing your home and minimizing conflict and resentment in your relationship. It doesn't seem fair to me if your DP is saying that you should just be using one laundry hamper that isn't big enough for your needs and it should contain all of the laundry and that you should be washing the clothes whenever it overflows.

 

yep.

 

My laundry hamper is huge -- it has 3 sections and we sort the clothes as we put them in the hamper -- lights, dark, and towels. It's awesome. I have a washer/dryer at home so I don't keep track of when I do laundry -- I just notice when a section is full and toss it in. 

 

Think about what would keep the laundry better organized *for you* and then make it happen.


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