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Husband's hoarding tendencies driving me up the wall

(52 Posts)
Artaylar Wed 20-Oct-21 18:08:09

We've been married 10 years. While we get along pretty well, his hoarding tendencies are a real challenge. I prefer a very clutterfree environment, in fact its pretty essential to my feeling of well being. DH on the other hand is perfectly happy to live with crapola everywhere and enjoys nothing more than buying more stuff to add to it.

For the most part I manage to keep our place from looking like a heap of rubbish, though he still has his 'crapola corners'.

We've got a little party at our place this weekend to celebrate my 60th, and getting him to clear his little corners for the carpet cleaner coming tomorrow is like pulling teeth. We've had a row about it just now - hence my venting off here.

Do any other GNetters face the same challenge and how do you manage and cope with it? I must admit, sometimes it feels like a losing battle that I feel like giving up on to drown in a sea of crap.

Audi10 Wed 20-Oct-21 18:14:26

My husband has areas where he stores his bits and pieces but it doesn’t bother me to be honest, what I would consider is rubbish is not his idea of rubbish! I think he has as much right to have what he wants in our house as I do, I think I must be quite an easy going person, as long as our home is reasonably tidy and clean , I don’t really worry!

Blossoming Wed 20-Oct-21 18:21:17

Mr. B is the same, but I’m as bad with my craft stash. We’re making a big effort to de-clutter right now, it’s a big house with a lot of cupboards, a garage, a shed and a greenhouse so there’s a lot to go at!

Namsnanny Wed 20-Oct-21 18:27:18

I think thats admirable Audil0. Providing the 'crapola' is secreted in his part of the house fine.

But.....when it creeps into every room, as in my case it becomes claustraphobic and very very depressing.

I understand the pulling teeth sentiment Artaylar, and can offer NO answers.
Clearing away all the paint tins screw drivers brushes rollers nails (Oh why Oh why are there nails in every pocket he has?) from the floor in every room, is a job he never has time or inclination to do.

As my days of tidying up are limited we are constantly at odds.

Believe it or not I'm not that fussy. But he just uses that to leave even more diy stuff around.

Im actually scared stiff I will fall over it one day, but even that cry for help goes unheard.

I did actually fall over the other week but it was nothing to do with his clutter!

Namsnanny Wed 20-Oct-21 18:28:10


Artaylar Wed 20-Oct-21 19:50:44

DH is somewhere where your own DH sounds to be on the spectrum Namsnanny and I totally get the distress of the crapola not staying secreted in his little corners, but creeping into all spaces of the house. Its this that is the constant battle that I'm fighting, and it does get very depressing. I feel your pain.

Most of the time I keep shtum, to do otherwise would be a constant ping pong of nagging on my part and retaliation on his, driving us both mad. Every so often though I do flip my lid. This is what happened earlier and everything has now gone very quiet - it normally takes him a day or so to 'come back out' after a lid flipping episode.

He's not a bad person, and neither am I, its just that on this one, we are incompatible.

I'm sure we'll be ok by the end of the week......until the next time wink

Namsnanny Wed 20-Oct-21 19:59:32

Just the same here grin

Ah well, at least we get to vent.

Enjoy the peace for as long as it lasts flowers

Namsnanny Wed 20-Oct-21 20:01:32

Blossoming It sounds like a long job to fill your winter evenings.
But just think of the sense of satisfaction you will be rewarded with when you get to the end of it.

I envy you a little!

Marydoll Wed 20-Oct-21 20:15:43

Blossoming I too am trying to downsize the craft stash. My future DIL is an art school graduate, so I have given her my Sizzix, Big Shot and Cricut machines, with all the paraphernalia which goes with them. It has made little impact on my craft room clutter! Good luck!! wink

sodapop Wed 20-Oct-21 21:24:18

My husband and I are polar opposites, I don't keep anything much, he keeps everything. So far he has three barns, eleven drawers and a wardrobe all full of stuff he doesn't use or wear. I stand it for so long then we have a big row discussion and some things get disposed of. Next one due any time soon so watch out for fireworks in SW France

Artaylar Wed 20-Oct-21 21:34:24

Namsmanny and I will grab some popcorn Sodapop and hopefully learn some lessons of some things getting disposed of along the way.

The last time we had a flipped lid episode about his 'stuff' and housework generally, he bought me a new mop.....sighs....

His latest acquisiton is a bread making machine which I never wanted in the first place, plus all associated paraphanalia....within 2 months no longer used and now joined to the growing hoard of stuff in the utility room.

Good luck with your decluttering Blossoming I too am a little envious on that one.

NotTooOld Wed 20-Oct-21 21:53:02

Oh how I sympathise. My dh is just the same, cannot throw anything away and he has hobbies that involve lots of 'stuff' that he likes to remain wherever he decides to put it. Woe betide me if he thinks I have moved something. I manage by weeding out my own stuff regularly, I really don't want any baggage any more, but I don't touch his. We do have the occasional 'discussion' about this but I tell myself I would rather have him around plus his junk than not have him around and a tidy house. And it's true - I would!

Artaylar Wed 20-Oct-21 22:03:20

Very true NotTooOld I too would rather have him and his junk than an empty and tidy house. What would I have to moan about then? wink

M0nica Wed 20-Oct-21 22:33:58

Artaylar I am another for whom an ordered environment is essential for my well being. In my youth I used to say that i could not marry anyone who smoked or was untidy. Well, DH doesn't smoke and hid his untidyness very well. He is not a hoarder per se, but in his whole life I do not think he has ever shut a door, a drawer or a cupboard and he never puts anything away. Milk will be left beside the fridge, squash on the worktop above the cupboard it belongs in. I often wonder how many years of my life I have spent, shutting doors, drawers and cupboards, putting things a way, switching off lights and looking for things he has put down, he knows not where, and now cannot find.

Like others I am happier with him than without, but just now and again I need to have a rant.

Callistemon Wed 20-Oct-21 22:42:14


Mr. B is the same, but I’m as bad with my craft stash. We’re making a big effort to de-clutter right now, it’s a big house with a lot of cupboards, a garage, a shed and a greenhouse so there’s a lot to go at!

Ditto, *Blossoming, except that we're not really getting on with it!
That's the trouble with lots of cupboards, everywhere seems to be tidy until you open a door or drawer.

three barns it could be worse, I suppose!

sodapop shock

nadateturbe Wed 20-Oct-21 23:02:36

I love a clutter free house too. And shed. But its not to be. I've tried. Everything I dump goes into the shed and a 'use' found for it. Still trying to get a large scanner out of his music room to the dump that hasn't been used in ten years. Our new printer scans!
I have mostly given up. I just insist he keeps the doors of his bedroom and office/ music room firmly closed.

Katie59 Thu 21-Oct-21 07:35:18

I have to confess I’m the hoarder when I moved in with my partner he had to buy 2 shipping containers for all my rubbish, it’s a good job we have a big garden. My crafting room is full to the ceiling and bedroom is a tip with stuff stacked everywhere, he does make sure the public parts of the house and garden are kept tidy.
I get away with a lot, LOL

Lucca Thu 21-Oct-21 08:35:12

I left my husband for many reasons, hoarding being one of them. Can’t stand that “it might come in handy”thing, and the not being able to invite people,round without a major tidy away operation.
I’m hardly tidiness personified but I do love my flat and like it to look presentable.

PinkCosmos Thu 21-Oct-21 09:32:00

If he has stuff in every room could you not buy some storage boxes - Wilko do some nice fabric covered ones and put all his stuff in them, out of sight. I am assuming it is small stuff since you mentioned screws.

My DH has many hobbies. He also has a man shed in the garden where he keeps his hobby related stuff. If he leaves his hobby stuff in the house I take it down to the man shed and leave it there.

DH is getting more untidy as he gets older - jackets hung over the backs of chairs, shoes left everywhere. I can leave them for so long, waiting for him to move them but then I can't stand it any longer and end up moving them myself.

Baggs Thu 21-Oct-21 10:23:25

If you decide to leave the crapola corners I think you should be open with your guests and apologise but say whose mess it is.

If you really want all of the carpet cleaned, can you shift the stuff yourself?

Then there is the option of "If all else fails, lower your standards" as an old friend of mine used to say.

Good luck.

Hetty58 Thu 21-Oct-21 10:30:59

Artaylar, I'm wondering how he puts up with you, to be honest. Why should you control the shared home - to the point of dictating how much 'crapola' is allowed out in plain sight?

You may prefer the minimalist look - but he might feel it's cosy being surrounded by his things. Talk to him about it. Maybe he needs his own area/s - and you yours?

Artaylar Thu 21-Oct-21 11:28:07

Hi All and thanks so much for your thoughts.

Well the carpet cleaner is here and DH has scarpered.

I've spent yesterday evening and this morning shifting stuff to get it as ready as I can. All I asked DH to do was to fill a box with his stuff. I do recognise that he finds any disturbance to things very unsettling which is why I don't ask him to do much and for the most part just learn to live with it while trying to prevent the 'spread' across the whole house. But with a get together like we've got on tomorrow, the 'corners' have to be cleared. I promise he will get them back afterwards.

Right now he is probably wondering why he puts up with me - laughs.

Storage boxes don't work for him as he can't find what he needs when he needs it, whereas he can when its all just on the floor next to the sofa where he sits.

It would be nice to have a his and hers area, our place isn't big enough for this.

He would be very cheered by some of the support he is getting with some of your replies, and quite right too. I'm not a complete nightmare - promise. I know there has to be give and take and for the most part that is what happens.

Okies, best get on.

Callistemon Thu 21-Oct-21 11:32:38

Perhaps I shouldn't say this (but I will 😁)

Will the carpet need cleaning again after the party?

Artaylar Thu 21-Oct-21 11:35:22

Chuckles at that one Callistemon, yup, it most probably

Callistemon Thu 21-Oct-21 11:39:39