This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
To struggle so, so much with keeping this house clean.(70 Posts)
Me and OH, 4 DC’s ranging from 5 months to 11 years.
OH doesn’t do much around the house. He will wash up the odd night and take rubbish out when promoted. He does work long hours but should definitely do more. Eldest DD’s will do things when nagged (which a lot of the time is more exhausting to me than just doing the job myself)
We have an insane amount of laundry and I am sick to death of washing plates, cups, bottles, pans several times a day. We’re in a small 2 bed which doesn’t help matters at all but I just can’t seem to keep on top of anything. I never stop, even now I’m feeding the baby and dictating this to my phone!
There’s clutter everywhere, toys every where. I start one job and the baby cries of the toddler flings herself off something. I then put her in her playpen and she screeches so loudly that she wakes the baby. I just never seem to get anything done ever.
I’ve never felt so unsupported, anxious, pushed aside, judged and shat on as I have being a SAHM.
My friends seem to be able to keep on top of this stuff, I just feel like a failure and feel like I spend all of my time cleaning/doing chores. I wish we could go for a walk or do some painting, play board games without having to worry about the fact that the house is a tot shit hole. I’m currently doing the TOMM but it doesn’t seem to help really. It’s undone as soon as I’ve done it. I get so anxious and mad about things getting undone and I’m so angry and resentful that no one else puts the effort in that I do. I’m sat looking around at my living room and there’s the half washed down high chair from dinner time that I had to abandon because the baby pooped up her back. There’s food on the floor, baby bath still out, shitty clothes at the bottom of the stairs.
Is this normal?? I just feel like I’m failing at life.
You are not failing. I feel like this with two children let alone four. The only thing which helped was getting rid of a lot of the toys and clutter. Also, I went back to work! I don’t make much after paying nursery fees but at least I’m not constantly cleaning and tidying.
I’m having the same problem, but I only have 2 kids!
@Dougt I can’t wait to get back to work but kind of dreading it and thinking if I can’t manage it now, what will it be like when I’m back at work?
@MariLwyd it’s so tough!
3 dc here and I was feeling the same! Feeling a bit more on top of things here now but that was after a big declutter. Do you have an attic or garage? As well as decluttering I got 4 big plastic crates and put a load of the toys in there and have set a reminder on my phone to swap the toys in a month. It helps with having less stuff out and also is apparently good for the kids to play better as they are not overwhelmed. When the stuff gets switched it will be like new toys as they haven't seen them for so long!
Also I sorted out the kids wardrobes so they have enough clothes but not too much that we are drowning in clothes.
You're not going to solve this by yourself. You need your partner and older children to help.
Lists of jobs, chore charts, screen time or allowance linked to household help - whatever it takes.
Also, with 6 people in a 'small 2 bed', living on top of each other is a bit inevitable. I suppose there isn't any chance of a move or expansion? Or any paid help, or a family member who could either help or could hold the 5 month old while you sort things out? And this should go without saying, but it unfortunately hasn't for a number of my family... I hope you have birth control of some type sorted.
Good luck and hope things improve
Yoru husband does fuck all, thats the problem. Youre a stay at home PARENT not an unpaid slave.
Other people manage because theor husbands do their fair share (and no, that isnt 'helping', helping imploes its a favour).
Who would do his housework if he was a batchelor or if you died?
I'd say it was probably more to due with lack of space rather than your efforts. The thought of my family living in a 2 bed makes me shudder.
But ultimately your DH and older kids need to step up to make this more manageable all round. Are the younger 2 in a good sleep routine? I've found a team effort 20-30 min blitz once the baby was down was a godsend.
It sounds like its actually your DH whose struggling to do anything not you
You have 4 dc in a 2 bed, its going to be impossible to keep that clean on your own.
Having a family of 6 in a two-bed is not normal. if it was, I'm sure we'd all live in a mess. You're the SAHM of four young kids and he works long hours so I can see why it falls to you, but it's always gonna be a losing battle with that set-up. You need to move and/or get help or totally lower your standards just in order to get by. I can't see how it wouldn't ever be a struggle otherwise.
I'd find it difficult to deal with all that in a 2 bedroom.
I don't think I would be able to deal with 4 DC with no help either which is why I got spayed after my 2nd one.
I'd start with decluttering so you have less stuff to pick up.
Limit the drinks and snacks so there won't be as many dirty dishes.
Can you batch cook a week's meals?
Is there any way you can move to a bigger place?
What is DHs excuse for doing nothing? Does he realise if he lived alone, he'd still be working as many hours and have to do all the cooking, cleaning, etc.?
It’s because it’s impossible for one person to tidy up after six people. Your husband and children need to do more, but specifically your husband - loads of people work long hours and manage to not live in filth, he’ll cope.
I know you feel awful but seriously I bet you are a great mum and doing a fab job.I would suggest personally stuff the lot of it ,,get your children,get wrapped up and go out to the park to let off steam,have fun and have a break,Sod it all have a day off.I swear to you this will help you far more than trying to battle your way through stuff,Get out then when your home grab a coffee and snuggle on the sofa with the kids and watch some crap telly! I would recommend Mr Bloom if he is still going?!!!! Just leave it all, Put yourself in housework time out for the day, You need to be kind to yourself too,My house is always somewhat untidy and it stays like it some days but on the whole I generally tend to make it semi presentable on a night when the kids are asleep,I find it pointless when they are about, I get them off to sleep and wash up and run the hoover around and then put some washing in before I turn in, If you got your other half to help say for 30 mins each working together before bed then you will be amazed about how much you can get done,Thing is its not all down to you so rally all the help you can you really should, Dont be so hard on yourself,
I clean most of the day, OH is helpful and I've only 2 DC. I struggle too.
In your situation I'd declutter then try to live with the mess as in toys and clothes.
My must is the smelly items even on an off day I'll do a clothes wash, empty bins, clean dishes, they're the smelly items that are vital.
I don't keep clutter. I also deep clean one room a week skirting, window board etc it's much more organised for longer after a deep clean.
1) Epic declutter. Having fewer things and a place for everything will help tidiness and the flow of housework.
2) Allocate chores. This will work better than a rota. Even if it is a comparatively small job, if someone is doing it regularly, at least someone else is doing it. For example, wiping down the high chair can be a child's job. Say to DH, I need you to take on a/some household tasks.
3) Allocate times to do those chores. E.g, getting all the kids involved in a Friday Tidy before settling down for a film can be a good habit to get into.
The Organised Mum Method.
You can print off the "timetable" from their website and it gives a simple clear idea of what to tackle on which days.
You've got four children and that's a job in itself. I understand that your DH works long hours but if he was living by himself he would have to cook, clean, take the rubbish out so he can do it with you!
I've often had to take a day off work to get on top of the house.
If your DH and your older children did their share it would be easier. I know that feeling that its easier to do it yourself but it's too much
Sounds like a total lack of space to me - you must have 3/4 children all in one bedroom? Where are all their possessions being stored?
Honestly if you just survive it till you get more space, you can't clean a small area with so many people and all the stuff that comes with them.
Create a small space in the garden or balcony a chair and a candle to chill when you're overwhelmed.
Oh god you're not failing! I only have 2 kids and my house is only clean (sometimes....) because I have a cleaner 3 hours per week.
And my husband pulls his weight. 50:50. I not sure if you can get a cleaner but I'd definitely tackle the husband piece if I was you. You just can't do it by yourself. It's impossible.
6 of you in a 2 bed?! Bloody hell.
I think some things you can’t help, other things you need a habit.
Like baby bath still out. Habit - put it away, every time, immediately after use. Or, it lives in the bath and as soon as someone else finishes their bath/shower - it goes back in.
Shitty clothes at the bottom of the stairs - dirty clothes are either in a basket, or the machine. Never anywhere else.
Baby food on floor... yeah, it’s going to happen.
You need to declutter the toys. One large box for each child, they’re responsible for putting them back in when finished playing. Anything not put back goes into a black bin bag in your room for a week. If they run out, they run out. Habits need to be formed!
No new toys unless space is made in the box.
Obviously their father needs to pull his bloody weight too!
But I think the key is being really strict about who does what and when.
You need more labour saving devices, a dishwasher is essential. I ran mine twice Friday and there’s only us two here.
No wonder you’re struggling. I would too.
You might be eligible for home help. Ask the council. You need help, definitely.
It's not the only factor but it's a bug one for me not wanting any more children. 4 kids in a 2 bed sounds like a nightmare.
If moving isn't in the cards then you need to do all you can to maximise storage space. Also cut yourself some slack and remember your baby will get older and be able to be put down for longer periods.
You’re seriously overcrowded op. Why are there 6 of you in a 2 bed? You’ve got no chance of keeping on top of mess if just the bare essentials of 6 people is filling the entire property.