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Tidy house -Unreasonable?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Thomw1994, Oct 30, 2018.

  1. Thomw1994

    Thomw1994 New commenter


    I am living with a friend who I used to go to school with. I am working full time, usually getting to school for 7am and coming home 6pm. I also help care for my parents who need help with shopping, cleaning, cooking etc. I am only 23 and overall, I think I am balancing everything.

    My housemate is VERY untidy, often leaving dirty pots, washing, food on the floor from cooking, laundry on the counter as well as rubbish in the living room. Going into the house, I stated that I am very tidy and need things clean as I am a neat freak. She works part time shift work and has around 3/4 days off per week. I often pick her up from work, take her shopping and will share my own meals with her if I make too much.

    When I bring up tidying/cleaning, she becomes confrontational and argues that I need to do my share too -even though I clean up after myself and always make sure that I leave no mess.

    I've told her that if it doesn't improve I will be looking for someone else or moving out as the furniture is all mine and that I am happy to live on my own and can afford to move and pay rent/bills. Am I being unreasonable?
  2. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

  3. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    Whenever I've shared a rented house with people I'd known for a while it was always more difficult than sharing with complete strangers. I think there can be an element of familiarity breeding contempt, whereas strangers will generally be more respectful of each other.

    That said, in one let there were two of us who worked in the same school who moved in with a third chap who never did his washing up. We got to the point where we each had to hide a clean set of plates and cutlery inside the washing machine so he couldn't leave them unwashed in the sink. The joys of house sharing eh?
  4. ilovesooty

    ilovesooty Star commenter

    Perhaps you're incompatible as housemates. You sound as though living alone would suit you better.
  5. sparkleghirl

    sparkleghirl Star commenter

    You're not being unreasonable but as a terminally untidy person I sympathise also with the flatmate - not all of us can do tidy and neat.

    You're just incompatible and probably would both be happier with different flatmates. Talk it over and move out.
  6. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Reason doesn't come into it.

    You're not happy and she's not willing to make any changes. You need what you need. It could be lavender candles and wall-to-wall Bruno Mars at maximum volume. If that's what you need to relax/stay sane? Then that's what you need.

    So you have to weigh up the costs.

    A/ the cost to you of living in an untidy house (mental)

    B/ the cost to you of finding your own place to run your own way (financial)
    Dyathinkhesaurus, colpee and InkyP like this.
  7. mothorchid

    mothorchid Star commenter

    It must be very unsettling. In all honesty, living alone might be better for you, I think, but that may not be possible right now.
    I wonder if the way you have approached discussions with your house-mate could have been a problem? Can you try again, but think about using different, non-confrontational language? "We" instead of "I", for example, and suggest ways forward. A rota, perhaps, or could the two of you club together and get a cleaner for a couple of hours a week? Can you perhaps agree on a minimum? The washing up done and the living room kept clear?
    This sort of thing can become a major stress factor unless it is dealt with early.
    Good luck. You sound like a nice housemate. I hope it works out.
  8. InkyP

    InkyP Star commenter

    I would have to get out. I have shared with untidy people very briefly in the past, I couldn't live like that. You are not being unreasonable.
  9. InkyP

    InkyP Star commenter

    I doubt this, if the flatmate's inclination is to live in a tip I doubt if re-phrasing it would change her.
  10. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    I'd say move if you can. Leaving dirty dishes and food on the floor is nothing to do with being untidy it is just inconsiderate. I live with an untidy hubby and I like things tidy I just nag!
    EmanuelShadrack and pepper5 like this.
  11. CheeseMongler

    CheeseMongler Lead commenter

    This quote makes me think that there may be more to this; I may be wide of the mark but I've had to change my language when thinking about this. I do not class myself as a tidy or untidy person but someone who has a "high tolerance" of mess; I can quite happily sit in what others would refer to as a tip, oblivious and undisturbed by it. However, when it dawns on me that things could do with a tidy and I do clean, I am thorough and everything will be spotless.
    If I were your housemate, I wouldn't ever notice that you "leave no mess" and clean up after yourself (unless you leave "clean patches" amongst the mess) because it's below my mess threshold. However I would notice that I seem to be the only one doing a really deep clean and doing the things beyond just clearing up after myself. From personal experiences (not accusations aimed at you!), people that are fastidious about tidiness often take responsibility for "their own mess" but have huge blind spots when it comes to things such as cleaning windows, toilets, ovens/hobs etc. because it's not (just) them that made it dirty.
  12. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    You obviously need two dishwasher machines.
    pepper5 likes this.
  13. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

    I thought she was being unreasonable and suggested going for the sake of the poor normal flatmate.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
    CheeseMongler likes this.
  14. silkywave

    silkywave Lead commenter

    I suspect your housemate is getting all uppity because you are making a criticism and one they probably realise is true. I think I am tidy but sometimes I have to give myself a good talking to when I don’t notice the coffee table disappearing under a pile of reading material/lists/letters I need to respond to etc. Today I have had a good decluttering day and got the duster out. But then I have the time, no excuses. But when working I didn't use to notice dust because I was too crazy busy/occupied with school planning. And there were more interesting things to do and think about....
  15. Ivartheboneless

    Ivartheboneless Star commenter

    Hide the sharp knives!
    silkywave and racroesus like this.
  16. Jude Fawley

    Jude Fawley Star commenter

    If you think the chaos she leaves around her is bad you should see inside her head.
    InkyP likes this.
  17. Thomw1994

    Thomw1994 New commenter

    I've had this before too! Luckily I deep clean the kitchen, windows, floors etc every week or so as I'm a massive clean freak.

    Last year when I lived on my own the landlord commented on how the flat looked like a show flat because of how clean it was.
  18. May2

    May2 Established commenter

    I wonder why you are sharing as you say you lived alone before and could do again. Was this friend just needing somewhere to live so you took pity on her. You may be friends but don't sound compatible as flatmates. If you aren't careful it may ruin your friendship too. It may be a good idea to have a rota for the general cleaning jobs but that doesn't help with general tidiness. If you told her before she moved in that you wanted everything tidy then she knew the situation and should make some sort of effort. However are you renting and are joint and equal tenants or do you own it. I wasn't sure but you did say most of the furniture was yours but you talk as if it is your home. If you share rent equally then you need to try to come to some agreement or agree to differ and go your separate ways.
  19. install

    install Star commenter

    Get out - but do it calmly and without bitterness. Find a place you can call your own - but don't lose your friend. Your 'untidy' friend is still the same person they always were,.just living with 'neat' you, maybe too much.

    Friendship comes in many forms. And sometimes friends get so close that they are suddenly on top of each other. So stay friends, but go and find your own space and invite your friend over now and again on your terms. And find other friends too - with all their foibles.too :)
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2018
    mothorchid likes this.
  20. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    Good job they are not living with my daughter then - for someone who is so organised in her professional and social life - she has no concept of tidiness.
    install likes this.

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