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...or is DH - cleaning related

(114 Posts)
29herzie Wed 06-Apr-16 10:27:51

Twice now this week ( Yes, only Wednesday now I know) DH has come home and been really grumpy about the 'tip' the house is in.

I am a SAHM to 2 DCs (2,6 and 6 months). DH works FT but starts early so is home at 5. I know I am rubbish at keeping the place tidy and we have always had very different ideas about it. I don't really care as long as things are fairly clean and hygienic. DH likes surfaces to be clear, but doesn't seem to see the dirt.
We've solved the problem recently by having a cleaner (waits for the flaming to begin). Unfortunately she is poorly at the moment so We are having to share it out.

I think he is being unreasonable as I think it is more important to spend time with the DCs. I find it really hard to get anything done unless I park them in front of CBeebies. Also me and DC1 like lots of messy play (cooking, gardening, painting) far more than cleaning. My argument is that it will still be there later to clean up when they've gone to bed (DC1 is supposed to help put her toys away and load the dishwasher but obviously most of it needs doing by us). Also I think that the timing doesn't help, 5 pm is DC1's teatime and the baby normally wants his bottle. I am trying to get our dinner on too. Or if we are out, we often arrive back just before this ( and if I try and clean up completely before we leave, we'd never leave the house). So, yes, he does often walk into chaos but I think that's just the way it is. Oh and I am trying to sort and sell baby stuff at the mo so there are bags and boxes all over the place.

He think is I am being a messy, lazy so and so who just sits on mumsnet all day... Leaving it all for him to do the moment he gets in...

I must stress that he is a 'hands on' dad and DH who does his share around the house, the AIBU is about attitudes to mess and timings

PPie10 Wed 06-Apr-16 10:29:36

Yanbu about letting some stuff go, but honestly how bad is it? Does he help when he gets in.

RidersOnTheStorm Wed 06-Apr-16 10:31:39

It doesn't take long to tidy up. Change your routine a little so the bottle doesn't have to be at 5. I always had a tidy up/put away with the DCs at around 4.30 because I like a tidy-ish house as well.

I would hate coming home to chaos everyday after a long day at work.

LemonBreeland Wed 06-Apr-16 10:33:15

I'm kind of with your DH. My DH works nights now so is often home during the day with the DC. I hate coming home from a long day at work and not beign able to sit down and relax for 5 minutes because the house is a tip and I can't just leave it. It pisses me off when I do more tidying/cleaning in the 30 minutes after I get home from work than he does all day.

Would it really be so bad that from about 4.30 pm onwards you have a bit of tidy up time.

PPie10 Wed 06-Apr-16 10:36:21

Just re-read the messy play bit, that would piss me off if you left it because that's more fun. I agree with your Dh. Park them for half hour in front of the tv and clean up.

OTheHugeManatee Wed 06-Apr-16 10:38:26

I'm at home daytimes as I'm managing renovations on the house. I tend to live in a squalid mess all day but always make an effort to have the kitchen tidy for when DH gets in. Not because it's the 1950s in our relationship but because when I'm working FT I find it miserable to come home to a mess.

I fully sympathise with your position - I hate cleaning - but you might find that a very superficial effort is all your DH needs to feel calm when he gets in and this in turn predisposes him more to get stuck in with family life.

gleam Wed 06-Apr-16 10:39:06


BloodyDogHairs Wed 06-Apr-16 10:39:23

I'm with your DH, nothing worse than walking into a messy house after a long day at work.

WittgensteinsBunny Wed 06-Apr-16 10:41:57

YANBU. Maybe leave the kids with him all day at the weekend and see what state the house is in when he comes home.

ProcrastinatorGeneral Wed 06-Apr-16 10:42:12

Meh, clutter isn't the end of the world as long as there's no layers of filth underneath.

petalsandstars Wed 06-Apr-16 10:43:09

The only cure for this is IME for him to do it all with both kids solo for a while. DH had similar moans/grumps but failed to see the laundry had been done/food wasn't just oven chips/kids weren't just watching TV/tablets all day until he was at home with them and I was out 7-7. Then nothing really did get done and he ran out of pants.

gamerchick Wed 06-Apr-16 10:43:25

I'm with your husband. The picture in my head of a family that does lots of messy play but doesn't do housework is a midden. I couldn't relax in a shithole.

However looking after littleuns is a full time job in itself so while they're young the nighttime cleanup should be shared.

If I'm going out for the day then all housework gets done early in the morning and the slow cooker slung on so there's little to do on the evening. You could get more organised so it's not massive work. Having a home for everything helps as well.

petalsandstars Wed 06-Apr-16 10:44:02

Oh and hygiene wins over tidying toys every time

ampersandand Wed 06-Apr-16 10:49:57

I have two under 2 and manage to do basic cleaning everyday.
You have to tweak your own routine to make it work.
I wash up, clean kitchen and put washing on whilst elder dc eats breakfast, once he's finished I sweep the floor. Then off to the front room with a bag of laundry to fold and put away.
Kitchen gets cleaned after every meal, toys get put away when they're not being used.
It's boring, agreed, but not as time consuming as I think you think it is to keep a general level of tidiness.
No wonder your dh gets annoyed.

HopIt Wed 06-Apr-16 10:50:06

My house is hugely a tip at the moment because of school holidays, we are in and out doing stuff. The kids are busy creating havoc, I'm chasing my tail feeding them/us.

It's annoying me let alone DH (he doesn't say anything, but you feel it). But normal service will resume next week!

I can understand he wants to come home to a clean, calm tidy home after a hard day at work. But you've had a hard day entertaining and educating the kids. Does he realise the whirlwind of mess kids can make?

MerryMarigold Wed 06-Apr-16 10:55:29

Oh OP, this has been my life with Dh/ kids. It's about different priorities and what mess I actually see and don't. I had a friend round yesterday and after we ate, she cleared table and stacked washing up beautifully, then wiped down kitchen, all before Dh got in. I never really noticed that I don't do that!! It's not on purpose. I think perhaps you need to sit down with Dh and agree a 'sanctuary' for him where he can go for 15min when he gets in. Perhaps this is living room, dining room or bedroom. Just one room which can be clean and orderly. Does your Dh 'tidy' by putting things in random places? This has been an ongoing argument with Dh.I'm fairly organised when I do things, but will leave stuff around. He just puts it away wherever, or makes a big pile of rubbish combined with important letters etc. I can't bring myself to 'tidy' in that way. My stats are a lot tidier than his, but i will leaves clothes out which he doesn't do. Out does get resist as kids get older, but i think he needs to appreciate what you do with the kids whilst you appreciate his need for a bit of order by having 1 ordered area in the house. Discussing and ageing is the way forward so he can see you compromise

MerryMarigold Wed 06-Apr-16 10:56:15

Agreeing, not ageing, although I must admit this issue has aged me more than any other!

NeedACleverNN Wed 06-Apr-16 10:56:43

Depends what the mess is.

A few toys everywhere and a couple of dirty dishes in the sink, yes he is unreasonable.

Paint, mud, glue and crafty stuff everywhere, kitchen a tip and no cleaning at all, yabu.

It doesn't take long to have a quick spruce

nanetterose Wed 06-Apr-16 10:58:20

Tidy as you go.

You said that both you & your eldest like "messy play" so, based on that- you really should tidy up after yourself.

I think if you did that, the stress would be less intense when your DH came in the door.

Soak dishes, wipe down...have big baskets dotted around, to chuck stuff in. smile

1AngelicFruitCake Wed 06-Apr-16 10:58:35

Depends how bad the mess is to know how unreasonable you're being but with boxes piled up, messy play etc it does sound quite chaotic. I've got two under 2, youngest being 5 weeks and breastfed so not like I've got a routine to her feeding times, which can make things difficult and I find the 4 till 5 period hard.

I make beds, put away night things, put towels straight as early on as I can and involve my toddler in this so she's with me. Just means I know any rooms that won't be used again until bedtime are tidy for later.
I have a routine that I tidy up each time we leave the house, just a quick shove of all the toys in the toy box. It makes me feel better when we return to a tidy house and I'm hoping it'll get my toddler into good routines.
I try to do washing up straight after breakfast, lunch etc or when I can.
If they both nap at the same time 😃 I tend to do a quick job like cleaning the bathroom (no way can I spend too long on anything at the moment!) I then have a sit down and eat chocolate.
I like to do activities with my toddler but clear up straight afterwards, whilst she plays. We go out for walks, have loads of toys out in the day and I don't like to rely on tv but from 4:15 ish I'm happy for it to go on and I get tea on (we all eat together as then I don't have to make tea for us again later) and I tidy up. Obviously she still has toys out, she just doesn't have every toy out so its tidier when he comes home.

With our first, my husband said the same as yours and at first I was annoyed but like others have said I now see his point. He also arrives home at 5 so I know how hard it is. I found the effort I made has been really appreciated.

BackforGood Wed 06-Apr-16 11:01:16

I agree it's difficult for us to take sides, without knowing the degree to which the mess is taking over.
If I were at home all day, then most days, I would expect to get somethings done. However, I wouldn't 'not do something' with the dc, in order to make the house pristine. I like the 'lived in' look.
You should print out the Dust if you must poem for him, and put it up somewhere prominent in your house.

MerryMarigold Wed 06-Apr-16 11:01:22

Also, you will get lots of dh's on this thread!! You are not them, and it's really hard to change completely and morph into a totally different person. You can certainly improve a bit. So both Dh and you are BU if you can't accept each other's needs a bit, and compromise. Neither of you is right or wrong.

Dellarobia Wed 06-Apr-16 11:02:28

I'm with you, OP

GinAndColonic Wed 06-Apr-16 11:02:47

YANBU. Go out for the day on a Saturday if that's his day off. Take tv plug with you.

Come back at 5 and call him lazy.

LizzieMacQueen Wed 06-Apr-16 11:04:24

It's hard and I don't think either of you are being unreasonable.

The only thing is this Oh and I am trying to sort and sell baby stuff at the mo so there are bags and boxes all over the place.

Does that need to be done now? Do you have garage or loft storage and put it away for now until you have the time to do it properly?

For us the arguments are always when there are 'unfinished jobs' sitting around the house.

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