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Do you feel pressure to maintain

(35 Posts)
lasslancashire Fri 18-Jul-14 19:51:45

a 'perfect' home, housekeeping wise?

I am 23 a moved into my first home with my DP in Feb this year. I have been out of the house since 18 but always lived in shared houses (as did DP), where you would almost never invite friends/family home but if they did and thought the kitchen/bathroom were rank, you can just blame it on other housemates.

Now we live on our own I feel the pressure of keeping everything perfect almost unbearable at times. My granny used to say to me the way to know if your house is clean is through embarrassment, if someone were to come in your house right now, is there something to be embarrassed about? But I would be 'embarrassed' if the bed wasn't perfectly made or if there was plates on the draining board.

DP is also fastidiously tidy and I feel under pressure to do the majority of the cleaning as I work significantly less hours than him (I do between 45-50 whilst he does around 70). He does more than his share of tidying on his days off but is just not around enough to do any 'deep cleaning.'
The other day at work I said to a colleague that I would be glad to finish soon as I hadn't made the bed this morning and DP wouldn't be happy if he came home to that. She sounded shocked and said 'why, will he beat you?!' in a jokey way but is it ok/normal to feel so worried about keeping things clean?

I ask DP to give me at least 24hr notice of bringing anyone around so I can ensure it the house looks nice. As a kid my parents were very serious about keeping an ordered house to the point of not sitting on the cushions of the couches so they didn't sag, washing the pots from making your dinner BEFORE sitting down to eat it etc. However I am a naturally messy person and when I lived alone my room was always a mess but now I am with DP who hates mess I am always clearing up after my self of fear of annoying him.

When I have my days off all my plans are around cleaning the house, doing the laundry, doing shopping. Is this simply the sharp shock of being an adult in the big bad world or am I worrying too much?

Yama Fri 18-Jul-14 19:55:40

You sound like your oh's cleaner.

No, I do not maintain anything like a perfect home.

I refuse to feel embarrassed by anything my dh wouldn't be made to feel embarrassed by.

I do not have a boss in my personal life and I would resist anyone trying to make me feel like I do.

Preciousbane Fri 18-Jul-14 19:57:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MyChildDoesntNeedSleep Fri 18-Jul-14 19:58:27

If you both work so many hours how on earth does the house get dirty?!

thisisnow Fri 18-Jul-14 20:03:27

No I don't feel pressure like you have spoken of. I do the bare minimum and even that's exhausting.

Does your partner get mad if you don't clean?

lurkernowposter Fri 18-Jul-14 20:05:39

No pressure, if he thinks it's so important tell him to get a cleaner!

lasslancashire Fri 18-Jul-14 20:05:41

I don't fear him or his reaction as such. If the bed wasn't made he would probably sigh and then make it but he wouldn't say anything to me or be in a mood. I fear him not thinking I am doing enough. I just want everything to be nice for him when he comes home as he does work very hard and does a lot of hours.

wyrdyBird Fri 18-Jul-14 20:18:55

I fear him not thinking I am doing enough.

And you fear that, because he has communicated to you that he doesn't like it if the house isn't as he expects.

he does work very hard and does a lot of hours.

So do you, lancashire.

This isn't the sharp shock of being in the adult world, it's the subtle but steady pressure of living with a fastidious man, who has trained you to clear up for fear of annoying him. It doesn't sound like much fun.

50KnockingonabiT Fri 18-Jul-14 20:27:09

My house is clean and has what we call the lived in looksmile

holeinmyheart Fri 18-Jul-14 20:41:05

The excessively high standards that you are trying to maintain are a big mistake. The effort involved in keeping a house so clean is a waste of time. Time that you could use to have fun with friends or your DP. Ask yourself this question; If I was to die tomorrow, would I like to have on my Gravestone, ' Lassielancashire had nicely plumped up cushions'? or instead, here lies the body of someone who enjoyed having fun.? Life is amazingly short, much too short to make a home into a forbidding Palace. No child will feel welcome in it. It will not be a relaxed easy going home. Even reading your post makes me feel anxious. None of your friends can call spontaneously in case they find dust? what ? Get counselling for yourself and DP before you have a baby and learn to relax. You are in danger of becoming a control freak.

lasslancashire Fri 18-Jul-14 20:51:22

Our house is never unclean but it is often untidy or messy as when we come home from work we just throw things down and cook tea or whatever. If I was chilling at home with the place a mess and DP brought a mate round I would be worried as I don't want people to think we live in a mess. I thought I was perhaps going a bit OTT but not to the point of needing counselling.

How much, mess/untidiness is an average amount?

thisisnow Fri 18-Jul-14 20:57:31

Don't be too hard on yourself Lancashire. Everyone has different standards and as you only moved in during February you're still finding your feet I suppose. I do agree that there's more to life than cleaning though. Maybe as you were brought up in such a clean house it has had a knock on effect and you're worried about what others think but perhaps you just need to find a happy medium.

My house the only rooms I'm bothered about are the kitchen and the bathroom. In our living room you will find balls of rolled up socks which I throw off when I get in from work and at the end of the week I go around and pick them up blush

BillyBobbed Fri 18-Jul-14 20:57:46

I am like this, unnaturally tidy but for some unexplained reason keep an immaculate home. I feel pressure every day to do it. Dh is clean but not too tidy yet doesn't pressure me. I have no idea where it comes from, you have my sympathies. I think your upbringing has given you a sense of shame over having an untidy house maybe

daisychain01 Fri 18-Jul-14 21:22:33

Remember that life is too short, there comes a point where it takes over your life having to worry about every mote of dust.

Just do your best, most people will take you as they find you.

Your granny sounds like mine, lovely, but their standards were from a bygone time. We are in the 21st century now.

Toohardtofindaproperusername Fri 18-Jul-14 21:38:54

It sounds quite extreme to me - if you both have some anxiety around it you might feed off each other, making things worse. But you both work hard and long hours and it's not your job to make things how your partner wants them at home. An unmade bed is not the end of the world and as others have said, life's too short for cleaning! Would you not like to enjoy friends dropping in, an evening without cleaning and a night without doing the dishes - just because you can, you have your own place and sometimes you can just let it all hang out .... Or is that just me...?
Be careful you don't end up doing "wife's work" (read the book - you sound like you are on a slippery slope) You said your partner doesn't go in a mood but your description of him sounds like he does and that he thinks it's your job to clean.. I imagine you are both exhausted - an unmade bed is unmade so it's easier to get into and sleep or have fun in! Nip it in the bud else you are doomed;)
worrying about what other people think ? The road to hell!

Walkacrossthesand Fri 18-Jul-14 22:20:58

Have a look at this, it may help put things into perspective?

GoMe Fri 18-Jul-14 22:32:49

Life is too short for this.
My ExH was a cleaning and control freak and would make a rota for the two of us to clean the house. He would inspect what I did and see if it was up to his standards He would plan things around housework too.
When his mum came to visit and stay over for a few weeks, he put her in the rota and humiliated her once because she didn't clean the toilet well enough...she did a good job, but it wasn't the way he liked it.
It is not fun living like this, you should both relax.

I can't stand un made beds but I do not get angry. I just make them quickly in 1 minute, doesn't need to be perfect.
And what is wrong with dishes in the draining board?

I never feel comfortable in houses that looks like show houses. It is so insipid, there is no soul.

My aunt suffers from very bad OCD. She has an amazing house, everything is so beautiful and expensive but the only way you can see it is by looking at the photos she posts on FB. She never invites anyone there, she can't cope with people even being there in case they sit on the sofa or move a chair out of place.
She never uses her beautiful kitchen and have all her meals in restaurants instead. And she has a second house with lower standard where she invites people for a visit and cooks.

ChangelingToday Fri 18-Jul-14 23:08:57

You both work long hours! I'm exhausted just reading your post. Dh hates clutter, whereas it doesn't bother me that much, I'd be looking at the dirty floor that he doesn't even notice. With two kids it feels like I'm on stuck on a roundabout sometimes cleaning and tidying the same things several times a day. I think you are putting too much pressure on yourself, relax and use your day off to do something fun, you're 23!!

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Fri 18-Jul-14 23:15:40

GoMe are you sure it's really her house? grin

lavenderhoney Fri 18-Jul-14 23:23:27

People are coming to see you, and have fun with you chatting etc. they aren't the housework police!

Nor is your dp. Just relax and be yourself. Read a book, keep busy with your hobbies , meet friends and tidy as and when.

Don't let housework control your life and be the measure of your achievements in life. It really doesn't matter and don't let housework stop you realising your dreams. Even if they are just reading great books and having mates over. Sounds good to me.

Dirtybadger Sat 19-Jul-14 01:55:47

I'm 23. I expect a bit of a crap hole when ever I go to friends' places. I expect very little from anyone house sharing. I am pleasantly surprised at a clean home (messy but clean). I am not any more impressed by extensive organisation or cleanliness/tidiness. Not an "achievement" for me. Who cares? I would assume they had too much time on their hands, really.

Life is too short. Keep the house safe and comfortable to live within. Nothing more needed. It's just a place to relax and have a sleep!

This post was brought by you to someone with "dirty" in their username, though, and someone who rarely makes their take from it what you will! No one takes a second glance when they come into my house. It's tidy enough to keep young relatives and the dog safe, untidy enough for people not to panic about where to put their stuff down or whether they need to take their shoes off and reveal the feet they are ashamed of (no need).

Happy36 Sat 19-Jul-14 02:05:23

We keep our home the way we like it. At the moment that means safe for the children so no glass coffee tables or thick rugs they´ll trip over.

Luckily we have a part-time housekeeper/nanny but that doesn´t mean we loll around on chaise longues and drop our dirty pants wherever we disrobe. I would say both of us take equal responsibility for making our home pleasant.

GarlicJulyKit Sat 19-Jul-14 02:13:35

My granny used to say, if someone were to come in your house right now, is there something to be embarrassed about?

My parents were very serious about keeping an ordered house to the point of not sitting on the cushions of the couches so they didn't sag, washing the pots BEFORE sitting down to eat

When I have my days off all my plans are around cleaning the house, doing the laundry, doing shopping.

Can you see why your head's full of domestic chores? I can.

I fear him not thinking I am doing enough.

Is he your boyfriend or your parent? Give that some thought, please.

Since I've been married to a perfectionist who demanded that I create & maintain the perfection, I'm naturally concerned that you don't follow my unwise footsteps. But, first, I think you really to have an open conversation with DP about all this. Then, please, come back and update!

AcrossthePond55 Sat 19-Jul-14 02:34:33

I've always said my home was 'clean enough to be healthy, but dirty enough to be happy'. My motto (as far as DH goes) has always been 'If you don't like the way I do it, then do it yourself'.

You are in very grave danger of falling into some bad habits with your DP. Don't allow yourself to live in fear of his disapproval.

GoMe Sat 19-Jul-14 08:11:35

ilovmydog yes I am sure. Her sister my other aunt leaves next door and we stay there when visiting (it's another country).
Because we are not around much, OCD aunt let us be there for a few minutes to enjoy the view and have some photos taken for her FB.

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