Gransnet forums


A clean Home!!!

(29 Posts)
dorsetpennt Wed 18-May-11 15:43:15

Before I go into any details I need to point out a few things, Firstly : I get on very well with my daughter in law and secondly I am NOT a neat freak.
However, the state of my son and daughter in laws home is positively unhygenic in fact a health hazard. Aggy and Kim would have a field day - I dread to think that if any swabs were taken what the result would show. They are both extremely untidy, always have been and since their toddler was born even worse. That is not so bad but their cleaning routine is haphazard if at all. The kitchen is greasy all over, the hob gets done once a week the floor washed when I visit, see again for cleaning the oven. It recently set off the smoke detectors with burning fat. Hoovering maybe once a week but around all the debris on the floor. The stairs and upstair 2 floors never. The bathroom maybe once a month. Bedrooms full of clothes spilling out of drawers - never hung in the wardrobe. They are expecting another baby I dread to think what will happen. They have a really nice home with nice things but it looks a tip. I try to help but have to tread carefully so as not to offend. It doesn't seem to worry them so why does it worry me? But they have a child and I'm entitled to worry for her health.

toothfairy Wed 18-May-11 16:25:04

If as you say it doesnt worry them then I cant see what your problem is.If your grandchild is well looked after,happy and healthy then maybe you should just "Live and let live"

TwinsetandPearls Wed 18-May-11 16:32:53

Leave them too it. They're busy having fun, not wasting their life overdoing the cleaning. They sound like they're ticking over ok. Plenty of time for cleaning once the children grow up.

nanafrancis Wed 18-May-11 16:41:42

well said, toothfairy & twinsetandpearls!

Pandemonia Wed 18-May-11 18:08:15

Blimey? Is one expected to clean the oven then? Like regularly?

twizzle Wed 18-May-11 18:11:12

Pandemonia - I have always assumed that all ovens are self-cleaning !!!
Well, that's my excuse.

glassortwo Wed 18-May-11 18:13:44

If they are happy let them be, everyone is different.

Oven is one supposed to clean it, thought it was self cleaning the way the freezer is self defrosting confused

twizzle Wed 18-May-11 18:15:57

I wish someone would invent a self-cleaning toilet.

glassortwo Wed 18-May-11 18:16:44

Me too twizzle.

supernana Wed 18-May-11 18:28:29

dosetpennt - of course you are bound to fret, however, your family seem perfectly happy with their living standards and, as it is their domain, it's best to leave them to sort out their priorities. My own dear Mother was a total house-proud freak. I loved visiting friends who lived

Pandemonia Wed 18-May-11 19:38:40

To be a little more serious for a moment, I firmly believe that, in terms of housekeeping, people are either tidy or untidy. Neither camp finds it easy understanding the opposition - let alone change their ways - and certainly, as someone whose former husband fell into the chronically untidy category, I now wish I hadn't wasted the time attempting the impossible.

There's also a huge difference between untidiness and actual downright filth of the sort seen on Life of Grime - where one of the key elements in the downward spiral was an inability to get rid of the sort of everyday rubbish that most of us put out for the dustmen. However, this is a form of illness, not mere untidiness.

From the sounds of it, your son and daughter-in-law are untidy by nature and unbothered by it and actually, a peck of dirt (as my grandmother was wont to say) won't hurt anyone including your granddaughter. So don't stress on their behalf and leave them to lead their lives as it suits them.

helshea Wed 18-May-11 20:29:24

"It doesn't seem to worry them so why does it worry me?" Exactly! perhaps that is the question you should be trying to find the answer to..... There child is coming to no harm, and I imagine they are loving parents, and will bring their children up well. I don't like to preach, but i thing they will have well adjusted children without any hang ups. All to often I speak to people who can't stop cleaning up, and just wish they didnt feel such a compulsion, they just want to have fun...

On the health side, it is actually not a good thing to have a perfectly clean house, for a start all the cleaning products used today are probably more harmful than a bit of dirt to young children. When a child is kept in a super clean home they are not exposed to all of the little bugs and bacteria that you find in a normal environment. There bodies never learn to defend themselves .

On a more straightforward note, it's not your house, no-one is coming to any harm, so don't judge.

When my children were babies, my mother in law used to come to babysit one night a week. She was a spotless tidy person and made me feel quite inadequate, I used to hide the ironing in the cupboard or she would do it for me. One day she opened the cupboard and it all fell out on her head..
I laugh about it now .. but was horrified at the time.. there is nothing worse than feeling like someone is judging your skills as a housewife and mother..

Harrypotterfan Wed 18-May-11 20:55:49

My Sil lives like pig. Her flat has a distinct cheesy feet smell. It's not pleasant. I don't enjoy visiting there but it's the smell that bothers rather than the mess and dirt.

I have a great many friends and they all have different standards but I don't care a jot as I know we are welcome. My house is fairly tidy but not as clean as I'd like some weeks but with 2 kids and a part time business I can't do everything I want to every week. And it's a thankless task!!

The worst house I ever visited was my minimalist aunt and uncle who made sharp breath noises and jumped every time my two under 4's touched anything. We ended up spending the rest of the visit in the garden. It was April and not a warm day
I vowed never to visit them at there home again so it's can be an issue at both ends of the spectrum in my opinion

milliej Wed 18-May-11 22:48:14

I know how you feel dorsetpennt because I am quite a tidy person, well as tidy as I can be with a dog and budgies (and a retired husband smile.
My daughter and her husband do make an effort when they have visitors but otherwise are to me, very untidy but it's their home! Just glad I don't live there permanently ;).
When I was in care work years ago, I was told that I would see all sorts of different lifestyles and I certainly did! What an eye opener! From the very rich to the very poor and different levels of cleanliness! In some cases none at all! However we were told that we were entering a persons home so it was not up to us to judge but just help as we could, which I did.

Funny though one elderly couple I helped regularly for a few years, suddenly their daughter decided she couldn't cope any more. Her parents were split up, the dad going to a home for those with senile dementia and the mother to a care about caring families I was livid but could do nothing! They could at least have homed them together couldn't they?

dorsetpennt Fri 20-May-11 08:59:48

Thank you everyone for your messages and advice. All very sound. I'm not a 'neat freak' and I don't constantly clean my house. A little dirt is good too - but sometimes I do wonder how much is a little dirt or downright filfth. BUT it isn't my home, they don't expect me to step in and clean for them and they are wonderful parents. Their little daughter is well dressed, clean , happy, loved beyond measure - their next baby will be as well. So ladies I'm going to take your advice and mind my own and just don't let it worry me. [too much].

HildaW Fri 20-May-11 22:12:01

Dorsetpennt....of course one of the main problems is that people into clutter etc get clutter blind.....they just don't see what a visitor would see half the time. If, as you say, the children are happy and well cared for and its a happy home, you will have to develop a pair of clutter blinkers!

glammanana Fri 20-May-11 23:02:49

Your son and DIL are enjoying their little girl and looking forward to the new arrival and the last thing on their mind would be to keep the house
spick and span,plenty of time for that when children are bigger,if you
feel the urge to help the offer of "putting your feet up and take a rest"
would be welcome from you and offer to do any ironing etc whilst she takes a well deserved break.We can all do with a bit of spoiling
every now and then,I wish my MIL (or even my mother)helped with my
home and family when I was pregnant it would have been very
welcome but every one just visited drank tea and went home leaving
the tidying up to me ! but that was years ago

senua Fri 20-May-11 23:52:04

My house is far from tidy so I am no one to speak but ...

If I had my time again I hope that I would have made more effort because I realised, too late, that children pick up their parents' habits. Perhaps you could tactfully 'mention in passing' to DS+DIL that they are setting up their DC to be messy too.

I agree with hilda about 'clutter blinkers' too. Sometimes you don't see it until you have an outsider's view. Take some photos of the GC, which just happen to include clutterwink, and see if the parents notice it then.

helshea Sat 21-May-11 08:14:05

Cleaning a house with young children in it is like drying your hair in the rain!

dorsetpennt Sat 21-May-11 11:00:01

to Glammanana - I do help when I go to visit and they are always delighted with my efforts. It isn't just the little one that stops my DIL from keeping a fairly clean house - she has always been like this, like her mother, so it's an inherited trait. I had young children, a husband who never helped out but my house may have been untidy but not filthy. I don't think anyone realises that it is truly dirty. They've interviewed a few cleaners who have turned them down. What can I say! It's their life not mine.

glammanana Sat 21-May-11 15:12:17

Is there any chance that they would consider doing a mini spring-clean
before they interviewed any possible cleaner,may be worth trying?
I know from experience that I used to tidy my home before my cleaner
came in (how sad is that) and she only came in to ease the pressure
after I had a really nasty operation,but I still made myself get up and
tidy around for some dopey reason.

sprinkles Sun 22-May-11 16:22:35

I'm not a clean freak but I put my hand up to getting out the antispeptic spray and cloth when they leave me alone during a visit. In the kitchen and bathroom, Whichever I can get away with first.

They know it happens, I'm told there's no NEED to do it but I can see a need.

Plus i'm so glad that after many years they finally believe in bleach.

dorsetpennt Sun 22-May-11 16:27:55

To Glammanana - I did suggest that to my son and he agreed that it could look daunting to any potential cleaner. So when next I go up were are going to do a mini-spring clean and general tidy up. Will keep you posted.

getmehrt Mon 23-May-11 09:43:29

When my children were young, we had a break in and the police were convinced the burglars had thrown everything out of our cupboards all over the floors. In fact, that was how we'd left it.

I now live in a very tidy house. I am a reformed character.

glassortwo Mon 23-May-11 09:58:01

My sister was pulled over for some minor driving incident and when the policeman say the state of the footwells of her car he read her the riot act said it was a fire hazard, she was really upset by it, she always had a tidy car from them on. grin