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Spouse's Spaces

10 replies

AnnaSewell · 10/02/2024 10:33

My husband has a habit of expanding everywhere.

The children have now grown up so there is more room in the house.

The spaces that are 'his' are

  • Former child's bedroom 1 - used as an office
  • Former child's bedroom 2 - used as a workroom
  • Former child's bedroom 3 - he goes off to sleep there. We both sleep more lightly now and keep each other awake/wake each other up

All the above spaces are quite full of stuff that he likes to hold onto and have visible. There are things on every surface. He has hobbies/interests which normally involve buying equipment, and even when the interest passes he likes to hold onto everything he's bought.
  • He also has space in our shared bedroom, where he keeps clothes.
  • There are a great many tools etc that are his - but which we rarely use, cluttering up a conservatory type space off the kitchen. Similarly the loft is mostly full of things that are his, which might come in useful.

There is no space that is really 'mine', because we do share a bedroom. Obviously the living room and kitchen are shared space.

There is a downstairs room which is mostly mine, but there are some papers in a filing cabinet there, so he will sometimes come in to get.

He is not a really bad hoarder, but he does like to hold onto stuff, so clutter often accumulates.

Sometimes too, he will want to leave his stuff in a shared space, because that way he will remember to do something. I told him that I wasn't willing to have his blood pressure pills on the table where we eat all day, because it's just a bit unsightly to have this stuff around all the time. And if friends come for coffee you don't want them looking at pills.

This morning there was a difference of opinion because he wanted use of the kitchen table to do his blood pressure, while I was in the middle of clearing up, and clearing. He claimed this was the 'only' space, where he could do this properly - lying his arm flat, and having room to lay out the monitor. I pointed out all the other rooms he could use, and he said no none of them had enough clear space.

I said in that case he needed to tidy up, and that anything medical like that needed to be done upstairs.

What do you reckon? It sounds a bit petty written down, but I do like to have a bit of space that feels mine, and also for the shared space not to be taken over.
OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

53 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
DonnaBanana · 10/02/2024 10:40

Two adults share a four bedroom house and you can do whatever you like with the space. If you want your own room, then claim one! But you can’t really moan about someone living in their own house using the space for their stuff. That’s the whole point of having a house! Put your stuff everywhere as well, enjoy!

IamSmarticus · 10/02/2024 10:48

You are not being unreasonable not being happy with him taking over every spare room in the house but you need to speak to him about it.

YABU not allowing him to monitor his blood pressure on the kitchen table, it takes 5 minutes and is a lot easier to do when sat at a table.

olympicsrock · 10/02/2024 10:55

IamSmarticus · 10/02/2024 10:48

You are not being unreasonable not being happy with him taking over every spare room in the house but you need to speak to him about it.

YABU not allowing him to monitor his blood pressure on the kitchen table, it takes 5 minutes and is a lot easier to do when sat at a table.


disappearingfish · 10/02/2024 10:55

YANBU. Put your foot down. My DM had exactly the same problem with my DF in their old house. Four bedrooms, 2.5 of which were overtaken by him, plus the garage and the loft. They downsized and it helped that he was in better habits by then.

Greensleevevssnotnose · 10/02/2024 10:58

We rent, but my oh has bedroom 2 as an office, conservatory as a workshop workshop for fine work, garage is a workshop for heavy machinery, two sheds for bikes and outdoor hobby gear. I WFH as well and have a desk in the corner of living room. He pays double the rent I do or I would be resentful. If it weren't for the hobbies we could rent a one bed flat, so that's all I pay for. Works for us. Edited as I forgot he also had the loft which is divided into rooms echoing the downstairs layout (bungalow)

KnowledgeableMomma · 10/02/2024 17:19

Nah, YANBU. You are living with a hoarder. Not just a little bit of a hoarder or a bit of a messy person but a hoarder. A hoarder will justify, justify, justify to keep hold of their possessions and things and will do so over the well being of actual people. So I would act firmly NOW. Lay down boundaries on what few rooms are his (I would take back a room of your own as inevitably you will need it for your own sanity) and try to manage the spill of his stuff.

eatreadsleeprepeat · 10/02/2024 18:59

I could have written this😂.
So frustrating and if you try to change things you are the baddy.
No helpful suggestions but a lot of understanding.

Iwasafool · 10/02/2024 19:06

I feel your pain. My husband has the dining room, the 2nd living room, the conservatory, the double garage, the loft, main bedroom with ensuite and he rentsa lock up. I wish I'd put my foot down years ago, I was busy with work and kids and he was disabled and at times depressed so I let him get on with it. It is now so daunting he can't face it. Some of it is expensive stuff and the expectation from him is he will die and I will sell it all and sort everything out. I say I'm getting a skip but to be fair one wouldn't be enough.

venusandmars · 10/02/2024 19:58

I understand your pain. When I met dh I had a mantelpiece with 2 items on it. He appeared in my life with daily newspapers, clothes piled on the chair in the bedroom, artifacts from exotic travel destinations...

More recently I have reclaimed specific spaces:

the kitchen - anything laying around in there - a screwdriver, spare glasses, and paperwork - I pile up and put in his office. My kitchen remains my clear, clean and uncluttered space.

my 'sanctuary': I reclaimed one of the spare rooms as MY space - an office, a hide out, a warm den.

We also have a strong 'one in, one out' rule. If dh gets and new bike, one has to go. If he gets 3 new jumpers, 3 old ones have to leave the house. I'm trying to move towards 'one in, two out' but it is patchy.

allthevitamins · 10/02/2024 20:27

Just say you need one of the rooms, and work towards that.

Then start a Swedish Death Cleaning project together.

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