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bloodrose wrote

I have a kid and 2 adults with ADD. Our house is never tidy. What I focus on is clean. Nothing that can attract bugs or mold. So, dishes done, trash out, no food left out. I wind up doing all of it and it makes me angry so I'm not a good model for anything. Except to say, do what you can and focus on the clean that matters - what will keep you healthy/not sick/bug-ridden.


annikastheory OP wrote

I hope it isn't out of turn of me to say this but your husband seems, from what you have said on Raddle, old fashioned to put it kindly.

But yes this seems like good advice. We also own too much so I think getting rid of stuff is going to be an important step for me, but unfortunately this isn't up to me 100%


Vulgar_Soda wrote

old fashioned

How can something be old fashioned if it never went out of style?


bloodrose wrote

Ding ding ding ding!

He doesn't have overtly patriarchal views, per se, just that he benefits from the patriarchy and benefits from the bar being set sooooooooo low.


anarcho_thembo wrote

i have dealt with depression and adhd my whole life so cleaning for me has been a fucking struggle and if i'm not careful i will be living in a toxic hell dump of depression mess and doom boxes. i had to teach myself how to keep a clean house because it was REALLY BAD. so i came up with a kind of like a mix of kondo and unfuck your habitat habits.

  1. everything has a place.

i found that i didn't have a lot of storage so rather than using a traditional entertainment center under my tv i have a big old dresser i found. it has 12 drawers and each drawer is designated for things that otherwise didn't have a good place to go, like masks and all those wires and art supplies and paper.

make a habit of putting things where they belong rather than setting them down wherever. it's usually easier to put it away immediately because otherwise it doesn't get done until you have to do that and also a lot more tidying and putting things away. importantly teach this to your kids. where do their shoes go. show them, tell them and then when they leave their shoes elsewhere ask "hey, where do your shoes go?" getting into the habit of putting things in their place is the hardest part to be honest because it has to be reinforced for a while before it's natural.

  1. set a timer for tidying and stop when it goes off.

don't look at the WHOLE MESS. look at parts. what can you get done in that time. in 15 minutes, if i've been keeping up, i can get my living room tidied, get a load of laundry in the wash, or i can do a kitchen tidy/counters and a quick sweep. maybe you just want to do 10 minutes or 30. that's fine. just don't make it a marathon.

when that timer goes off you're done. take a break, watch a show, read a book, do the things you do when you're at home and then after an hour or so (i usually do after every episode if i'm watching tv or if i'm reading or playing video games i set a 45 minute timer) and then cycle through that a couple of times. i never do more than 4 in the evening. so it's an hour of cleaning which is generally more than enough for me to get everything done.

  1. big sunday funday clean.

idk if this is like ... normal in other cultures but in the area i grew up it was pretty much the norm that every sunday morning (after mass) the whole neighborhood was a party of loud music while inside the apartments we were all doing the big cleaning things that we didn't do over the week. so mopping and vacuuming and dusting. everyone gets involved in this, kids too.

i have a handful of sunday cleaning playlists faved on spotify so i can switch up what kind of music i clean to. it can be any kind of music that's got a good up-tempo beat because you want this to be energizing rather than a CHORE.

this doesn't have to be on sunday even, it can be any day where you've got time to dedicate a couple of hours to cleaning. i do this on a rotating schedule because it's just me. so during week a i clean the bathroom on sunday. on week b i do all the floors and dusting.

  1. keep on top of your dishes and empty your sink before you go to bed.

for me if i don't keep on top of my dishes i find that i get stressed when i have to do MORE dishes later, which is silly, but then i end up not doing dishes for days and i have to wash every single dish i own at once which is even worse.

so to make it easier for me i really try to make sure that i have the dishes done asap. and then i make sure my sink is empty before i go to bed. sometimes this means doing those dishes, sometimes this means taking the dishes out of the sink, giving them a quick rinse and then setting them on the counter so i have a head start to do the dishes in the morning.


Raitzo wrote

These are great suggestions.
All I would add is that those changes are all a process, don't feel bad for failing to do or falling back into bad habits. Just keep trying.
A lot of your depletion to do those necessities are a result of the capitalist exploitation so if all fails EAT THE RICH


anarcho_thembo wrote

yup! 100% thank you for the note.

there is no shame in set backs. i think it's so important to be very kind and gentle with yourself, especially if you have a day where you don't have the spoons. try to remove the morality, there's no morality in cleanliness.

if cleanliness is next to godliness, i say no gods no masters.

we're not supposed to live this way. the household under this hellscape capitalism is impossible without help. this is hard in a way that doesn't get talked about a lot.

i also want to add that the timed method works even when you're crawling out of a depression into a mess.

when you're cleaning up big time messes you say "ok for 20 minutes i'm going to just get x" where x is empty soda cans, garbage, dishes, laundry, toys, and just do that and then stop when the timer goes off. then relax. then do another 20 minutes when you're feeling up to it. it may take you a few days of doing this but you'll get it cleared up in much much less time than you think it will.


annikastheory OP wrote

if cleanliness is next to godliness, i say no gods no masters

I like this

keep on top of your dishes and empty your sink before you go to bed.

Also this would probably a huge habit for me if I can manage it.


anarcho_thembo wrote (edited )

it's so hard. i really do have to force myself every time. thinking about how much i actually enjoy my kitchen when it's clean (it's really cute!) helps to be motivation for me.

it's also the only time i'm "allowed" to listen to podcasts at home. (i have to make so many rules for myself.) so if i'm in the middle of something really good then i'm very motivated.


carrot wrote

my general philosophy is to try and avoid messes in the first place, clean a little as you go, clean messes as you see them. but that might be hard with kids. maybe you could try and teach them the same thing?


loukanikos wrote

When I was into minimalism I came across a koan I always liked that was like:

The student comes to his teacher in the morning and tells them "I am ready to learn".
The teacher asks, “Have you eaten your breakfast?"
The student affirms they have just finished eating.
The teacher then says, “Now wash your bowl.”
The student has been enlightened.

I always liked that and wanted to put it over my sink as a general philosophical guidance.


fortifiedmischief wrote

make cleaning fun and get your kids to help. blast good music. have treats available. watch a movie when it's done.


moonlune wrote

children are responsible for what's in their room. Adults are responsible for the rest of the house.

When cleaning their room, make your child pick up 1 item class at a time (clothes, then legos, they barbies, then puzzle pieces...). You can even eyeball the amount of stuff to pick up so as to give the child an even clearer goal (10 clothing items, then 50 lego pieces, then 5 barbies, then 20 puzzle pieces).

When you vacuum, just dunk found stuff on a table or something, and when you're finished call your child to put their stuff away using the previous technique.


sunrat wrote

Embrace the chaos.

Leave out only the toys that kids like the most/rotate them/hide the rest.


loukanikos wrote

This might be controversial but have you considered hiring a cleaner/maid/nanny/help (whatever it goes by in your area)? In some ways these types of labor are exploitative but many people do rely on that type of work to make a living, and if you are careful about how you hire (not using "platforms" or other types of middlemen) you can find people who are working on good footing.

If you are overworked and have the ability to afford it, it may be a good option. Obviously, and should go without saying its important to treat all labor -- but especially domestic help -- with dignity.

My wife and I have a cleaning person who comes about once a month for the last 5 years. Its worth it to us as we both sell our own labor a bit too much. I think in my ideal world these tasks would just be distributed, on a rotating basis amongst members of our household. However our household is just the two of us and our actual jobs and other obligations are time sinks, so we sometimes dont have time to clean. This same point is also an argument in favor of collaborative or intergenerational housing in my opinion. Its probably a bit excessive from a consumption perspective that "nuclear families" or even individuals often live on their own.


AnarchoDoom wrote

Depends how old the children are, but there's a phase when they start enjoying taking part in cleanup activities, so you can show them as a kind of game for them to do, so you save half the effort.

Parental education, u know?