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Author Topic: Should I clean the house?  (Read 2582 times)
1stand10
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« on: October 25, 2010, 07:13:24 PM »

I have a question that I don't believe I have seen on this board.

I became aware of and suspected my wife had BPD after we had an argument in Dec 09.  I am in the military, working 12+ hour shifts AND taking full time masters degree classes last fall.  We had an argument that I didn't do enough around the house (clean, laundry and yard work) and she is a stay at home mom.  Since then I explained that a person with a work load as much as I have simply can't do what she is asking. Needless to say, I told her that the house is her responsibility and I will maintain the yard work.  This was suggested by my therapist.

The house remains very messy and cluttered.  There are clean clothes piled on the couch 2 ft high and the bathrooms aren't cleaned for a month.  Now I still work 12 hour shifts but for only 4 days in a row and then I have 4 days off.  She still doesn't have a job and stays at home playing on Facebook.  My s14 and d8 have to dig for clean clothes every day while I do my own laundry because of my unique work schedule and uniform requirements. 

Recently my s14 became very upset to the point of tears that he never has clean clothes or can't find them.  He even said that we have a disfunctional family.

Should I give in and clean the house?  I want to provide my kids a clean, healthy and stress free environment but I don't want her to "feel as if she has won".

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BillP
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« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2010, 07:26:32 PM »

My exBPDg/f was a freakin' slob! I was constantly picking up after her, and cleaning the house. Cleaning the yard. She took offense one day when I said that, if someone were to come into this house they would think it was a pig sty. Oh sure, she'd clean house, when her friends came over to party. But otherwise, not a damn thing. But then I learned, it takes every ounce of energy they have just to get out of bed, take a shower, brush their teeth, etc... .

For the sake of the kids, you might be better off to bite the bullet, and clean up a little bit. I wish you all the best with this.  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)
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magicmirror
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« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2010, 07:46:10 PM »

My exBPDgf's house is a disaster.  I saw her clean once in 6 months.  Disgusting really.
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Runningasfastasican
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« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2010, 08:10:44 PM »

When I used to live with my exBPDW, our house was a total mess if I did not clean it... .(she did not work and definately did not clean)... I worked long hours, in a high stress job, but when push came to shove, I cleaned, not because of any desire to "give in" to anyone or anything rather, I did it because, she would not, and I did not want my D or my SD living in a pig sty. It is not a question of her "winning" it is a question of what you want for your kids... .if wife is not doing it, well then you are left with the choice that if I dont do it, no one will... .cleaning on work days can be incredibly difficult, so I would maximise what I would do on off days, and encourage the kids to "chip In" as it makes it easier to do and teaches them an example different from the whole "sitting on the couch and being a lump" example... .just because you are cleaning does not mean you have given up on whatever it is you are deciding to do in your future in regards to your relationship with the BPDso... .it just means that you are taking action to effect the environment that your kids are living in until you figure out where you are going in your relationship... .I hope this makes sense and take care... .
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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2010, 08:21:36 PM »

Excerpt
encourage the kids to "chip In" as it makes it easier to do and teaches them an example different from the whole "sitting on the couch and being a lump" example... .just because you are cleaning does not mean you have given up on whatever it is you are deciding to do in your future in regards to your relationship with the BPDso... .it just means that you are taking action to effect the environment that your kids are living in until you figure out where you are going in your relationship... .

I agree wholeheartedly. There's an old saying that "when a loose cannon flogs a dead horse there's the devil to pay." You'd might as well acknowledge her facebook sit-in by moving on without her. You could even blow her mind by hiring a maid service for $60. Make your own life comfortable until you figure out if the marriage is worth saving. If it's not, you'll have to be doing the housework and chores anyway, so It's a good time to get the kids involved rather than walking around the giant elephant (possibility of divorce) in the room.  These skills are going to help them in the future with their own homes, so might as well start now... .

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GlennT
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« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2010, 11:06:31 PM »

Same here Buddy Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)  My dad worked hard too. Mom stayed home watching soap operas and talking to neighbors instead of cleaning. And guess what? As soon as I saw my Dad start cleanin and showing me stuff, I started getting in the habit of doing it too, like teamwork... .Hut234... .
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tiredhusbandfather
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« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2010, 10:01:15 AM »

Wow!  I can so relate to this one.  My uBPDW is a total slob.  She's a stay at home mom, who best I can tell does the laundry (but not mine), irons (my stuff too) while watching tv at night, shops, and talks to her friends.  Like some others here, clothes that are not ironed, stay in the clothes baskets for weeks!  There are piles of dirty clothes by the washer.  My kids have to look through the clothes baskets for clean socks - hoping they can match them - and underwear.

The house is filthy unless I clean it.  I've finally gotten around to showing the kids how to clean house, so I have help now.  If W schedules a party or dinner at our house - you guessed it - that day the kids and I are working our @sses off cleaning the house and putting away the junk that accumulates.  I've just yesterday decided with my T's help that I need to get out!  Every reason I came up with for staying, we easily rebuffed with a reasoned discussion.

I have made this decision before only to back out at the last minute.  I'm hoping I have the strength to pull it off this time. . .

Hang in there man, you have a lot of company.   Stay sane and take above all, don't forget to take care of yourself!  You deserve it and you deserve to be happy.  We get one shot here on earth. . . Let's make the most of it.

Peace,

THF
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left4good
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« Reply #7 on: October 26, 2010, 10:15:44 AM »

I say clean... .here's my story which offers a difference in reasoning. 

I got off earlier then she would by about an hour and a half every day.  Picked up the kids and made sure I got home to clean and pick up and start laundry.  She is a neat freak (which I like).  My ideal behind this was that i could "prove" how good I was by putting more and more of myself into the housework, kids, her, etc.   It didn't work.  But we had a spotless house.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

Here's the difference:  You are wanting to clean to offer you and your kids a healthy and properly functioning household.  Something that offers comfort and with them chipping in some accountability and structure.  HEALTHY

I was doing it to prove my worth and steer clear of rages and blame!  UNHEALTHY

Live your life how YOU need to live it and leave her in the dust.  She'll either catch on or she won't.  Don't lose you in this whole thing and don't let go of your expectations... .even if you have to reach them yourself. 

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fogbound
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« Reply #8 on: October 26, 2010, 10:52:23 AM »

Before I was evicted from my own house, this was the distribution of responsibilities.

ME

Sole breadwinner

Do my own laundry

Cook separate meals for all since she and her 2 kids (I adopted them) couldn't agree on anything.

Clean dishes and kitchen

Take out garbage

Vacuum dust bunnies when they got so big they had their own zip code

Make my own couch (didn't sleep with her anymore, was replaced by her 2 dogs)

Listen to what a douchbag, loose, p***K, etc I was

HER

Wash kids clothes

Pick up dog piddle pads

Feed dogs roast beef, chicken, steak

Not pay the bills on time

Dump cats littler boxes every several weeks when they contained 90% poop/ 10% littler

Watch CNN Headline news and keep me abreast of car chases and Hollywood scandals

Watch Nancy Grace and keep me abreast of missing and exploited children

hit_ at me

KIDS

Eat

Play X Box Live


I suggest you clean the house because I won't do it itself.
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lostoc
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« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2010, 11:14:45 AM »

You have no choice but to do it yourself. Yes it will be more work, yes it's unfair. But you're in a relationship with someone who DOESN'T care and WILL NOT do it. So your choice is:

1. Live as is

2. Do it all yourself.

I chose #2 for a year and then when I realized I couldn't do it anymore, I cut her loose.
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tiredhusbandfather
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« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2010, 11:57:08 AM »

You have no choice but to do it yourself. Yes it will be more work, yes it's unfair. But you're in a relationship with someone who DOESN'T care and WILL NOT do it. So your choice is:

1. Live as is

2. Do it all yourself.

I chose #2 for a year and then when I realized I couldn't do it anymore, I cut her loose.

so, now that you've cut her loose, how do you feel? 

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lostoc
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« Reply #11 on: October 26, 2010, 11:58:56 AM »

so, now that you've cut her loose, how do you feel? 

Honestly as of right now I feel great. I know I am going to recover fast and well and be on my way. I am even losing the FOG already, it's super.

I thought I would be way more upset but I haven't been at all. The bliss, peace and ease of my life in the last 6 days has showed me I made the right choice.
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stateofzero

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« Reply #12 on: October 26, 2010, 01:01:50 PM »

My uxBPDgf was a total slob.  She left hair all over the bathroom floor and shower.  Wouldn't wash her dishes or help out around the house.  It seemed she was always lost in her own head most of the time.  Her coworkers even commented that she would talk to herself at work.  So I found myself cooking, cleaning, doing yardwork, etc. ect.  She wouldn't roll out of bed until around 2 or 3 pm. Then she'd start calling and texting.  She hated to be alone.  I'd usually leave work early to be with her before she started work at around 5.  She worked odd hours as a bartender.  So after a day at work and then coming home to cook and clean, and then maintain my yard and home on the weekends she would expect me to stay up late with her and go out partying almost every night.  As you can imagine this was unsustainable.  I found myself having to take a nap during the day to catch up.  After our breakup she began telling her family and friends that I would never take her out and that all I wanted to do was stay home and lay around.  These people have no clue.
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Backtome09
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« Reply #13 on: October 26, 2010, 01:25:43 PM »

Same here Buddy Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)  My dad worked hard too. Mom stayed home watching soap operas and talking to neighbors instead of cleaning. And guess what? As soon as I saw my Dad start cleanin and showing me stuff, I started getting in the habit of doing it too, like teamwork... .Hut234... .

Yup same here. My Momster worked I think just to use that as an excuse to not clean the house. If it wasn't for the kids cleaning, it would be a sty. When I was a teen most the other siblings were out of the house but I went to school, held down two to three jobs, and made that house sparkle. You should see that hole now that she's alone in it. 

My xbf (uBPD) was the same way. Total pig. waify!
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lostoc
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« Reply #14 on: October 26, 2010, 01:28:06 PM »

She left hair all over the bathroom floor and shower. 

Weird, I thought that was just me. Mine has PCOS and lost hair daily, EVERYWHERE. She'd leave huge piles of it in the sink and all over the bathroom. I mean it was absolutely disgusting. She'd wipe it on the side of the shower too.
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stateofzero

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« Reply #15 on: October 26, 2010, 03:59:43 PM »

Lostoc-

I would regularly find clumps of it in the shower.  I know that my uxBPDgf had a lot of health ailments as well.  Its weird how there's so many similarities to all of our stories.
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The_411
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« Reply #16 on: October 26, 2010, 09:30:26 PM »

Mine was a neat freak. So I guess there must have been some NPD/OCD in the soup. Her place on the "messy side" would seem clean to most people's best.

Well considering that you do all the work, bring home the bacon and are prepaering for a brighter future then no you shouldn't clean the house yourself, but make it a family chore to do together if possible.

Sadly, she won't do it so either you cut her loose or you have people who are capable your children do it and explain to them that by doing it they are learning a valuable lesson and they will need that drive to do it when they get older.
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1stand10
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« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2010, 09:50:03 PM »

Holy cow, I can't believe the hair stories!  My wife has the SAME problem.  Is this just a symptom of whatever they are suffering from?  Among all of the other ailments and behaviors, this the one that really threw me for a loss of words.

Thanks, I have been cleaning the majority of the house for 16 years and I'm fed up.  My son14 started crying this morning as I took him to school because I told him we could have a small birthday party for him this weekend.  As the tears rolled down his face he said he doesn't want to have a party at our house because it is too messy.  This broke my heart. :'(

It appears that I will serve this sentence for the rest of my life because I had an initial consultation with L today and I can't afford $3600/month in spouse & child support payments plus take half of her thousands in credit card debt.  Plus the L said if I filed, it would be a very slim chance I would get custody. :'( :'(  Thanks California!  
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Crystal Ball
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« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2010, 10:35:09 PM »

It appears that I will serve this sentence for the rest of my life

I'm sorry things appear so bleak at the moment, but you never know what the future holds.  You will NOT be in this situation the rest of your life.  For the time being concentrate on taking care of you and your kids.  I tried to create the best homelife situation I could by working around my xh for years.  I know how frustrating and tiring it is.  "When one door closes another one opens."  Give yourself some time think and investigate other options (maybe a second L's opinion).   x
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fogbound
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« Reply #19 on: October 27, 2010, 05:23:13 AM »

Hi WL

Two things

Regardless of the legal situation in CA, you are not a prisoner so stop thinking like one. If you make less you pay less is support. Think about scuttling your own ship for a while. I've had to do it.

As far as the birthday party goes, do it a Dave and Busters or another location. It'll be more fun at an outside facility anyway.


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1stand10
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« Reply #20 on: October 27, 2010, 06:19:56 AM »

Easier said than done Fog,

I'm in the military and can't cut my pay and there is NOTHING to do around here for my son much less a D & B.  We can barely afford a video game for him as my uBPDw has racked up so much debt that we live pay check to paycheck.

Its hard not to feel like a prisoner.  Look at my other post about my initial consultation with L.  I spilled my guts about BPD, abuse, emotional turmoil on the kids, financial irresponsibility and he said the judge won't care.  All he told me is how much I will pay in spouse and child support with only 20% custody plus pay her thousands of $$$ in CC debt.  She has NO JOB.  At least if I stay with her I can see and protect my kids.
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fogbound
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« Reply #21 on: October 27, 2010, 06:25:47 AM »

Sorry, I guess Florida is a lot different in the divorce department.

Just try to think outside the box for the birthday.

Good luck... .and thanks for your service to the country.
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Crystal Ball
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« Reply #22 on: October 27, 2010, 10:12:53 AM »

You are not a prisoner unless you choose to be.  You are probably angry and upset over hearing the recent news from your L.  Give yourself time to let that information settle and for you to clear your head to think.

Please bear in mind that many of us have had tough situations and divorces to deal with (including losing lots of $$, our wacko x’s getting custody, etc.).  It isn’t easy, but there is always a path to get through it.  It might mean giving up a lot – or accepting the situation as it is and riding it through.  Whatever you decide about your marriage, the emotional well-being of you and your kids is in jeopardy and you have to make plans to deal with that the best you can.  Use the support and suggestions on the various bpdfamily.com Boards based on your current status.  Baby steps get you moving in the right direction.  Your solution will start to unfold as time goes on.   x

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left4good
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« Reply #23 on: October 27, 2010, 10:55:42 AM »

If you feel like you are going to have to stay in the situation and understandably so,  i would do everything in your power to start protecting YOUR finances.  If she doesn't have a job,  doesn't do housework,  etc. then why does she have credit cards and why are you responsible for the debt that is on them.

Think in terms of dealing with a child!  Would you hand your teenager a credit card and expect them to be responsible for it?  Same thing here. 

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ForeverDad
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You can't reason with the Voice of Unreason...


« Reply #24 on: November 05, 2010, 06:28:28 AM »

Be forewarned, your setting a boundary here (frankly, any boundary) will be certain to trigger an overreaction.  Can't be avoided.  So prepare as best you can, protect yourself as best you can.  Doing nothing isn't an alternative either, but you can get an overview of what needs to be done, the timing and in what order, though no amount of planning can prepare you for what she actually does.

Also, no need to change jobs or anything like that.  If you did that, your spouse could claim you have the capability to earn more and ask that your income be imputed.  Same goes for her, if she has gone to college but doesn't work, her income, even if zero now, could be imputed.  Many mothers work, especially if all the children go to school or daycares.

Recently my s14 became very upset to the point of tears that he never has clean clothes or can't find them.  He even said that we have a dysfunctional family.

Validation is important.  Validate his feelings.  While you don't want to go on a blamefest rampage, acknowledge his reality, then discuss with him how, at least for now, this can be dealt with.  Likely you two can come up with a workable solution that reduces his waiting for his mother's involvement.  As for his recognition of the dysfunction, let him know that you're pondering the possible solutions.  Enough so he knows his worries aren't falling on deaf ears but not any details so he risks making an ill-timed outburst to his mother or sister.
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