I Do But I Wish I Didnt

we live in a small house to begin with..no closet space, no garage, no attic, no spare rooms or basement.
its mostly my sister's fault its a pigsty because she buys dog toys and dog treats and just leaves everything where ever. she has a few long haired cats too and they get hairballs a lot and my mom has to yell at her just to get her to clean it up. and shes has a bigger room than me with a closet twice my size plus some in order to store the pet stuff but she just doesnt get off her @ss and do it. and we also make fleece tie blankets for everyone around christmas but it was onsale and she went overboard....it feels like the whole house is a disaster and will never be clean no mater how much i help out. it just feels hopeless she piles up the couch throws wrappers on the floor, never helps with laundry or dishes, so why do i bother. and im sure my mom would help more if she could but she has health problems and is sick a lot so i get stuck doing it and its not her place to be doing it shes not the one making the mess and usually the only thing i dirty is my room because theres never enough room for all my stuff so it sits on my dresser or a pile on the floor and just looks blaaaah. i get so fed up with it the only reason i clean anymore is to save myself from the embarassment when friends come over and so i dont live in a complete and total pig sty. well if you have any advice or any comments to make me feel better let me know....thanks
cupcakecutiee cupcakecutiee
44 Responses Nov 11, 2010

Do you think your sister has a hoarding problem? Sounds like she's on the boarder line of hoarding. Particularly with animals and the animal toys. She may not realize that what she's doing is disturbing the household and may not realize she has a problem. Most hoarders have what is referred to as "clutter blindness" meaning that they actually don't physically SEE the clutter or mess - their brains don't process it as a mess or clutter at all, their brains do process it as a normal environment, that there is nothing wrong with it and that in itself is the biggest part of the hoarding disease that afflicts more people than we all realize.<br />
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My dad was a hoarder, is a hoarder. Hoarding is also a sub-diagnosis of OCD or obsessive compulsive disorder. Or rather - it's co-morbid. Meaning it goes hand in hand with OCD - most OCD patients are some type of hoarder.

I know you have gotten alot of ideas here, my wife and I have been married for 19 years and she is very lovely wife that is very caring and fun. But she is a slob! She comes from a home that both her parents are pack rats. I come from a home of two neat freaks, mix those two and you got a perfect recipe for a disaster. Well after 19 years of putting up with the messes. I just started throwing crap out the door! I even went as far as tossing the living room furniture out the door. It has been three weeks and almost half the house is neat and clean, and I am not going to stop! So I would just start with your room, and toss everything that is not nailed down. Think of it as a new start, If you need to think about whether you should keep, toss it! Those things you do need to keep, you wont think about, you just keep it. But if you have to stop and think of keeping it, then you can live with out it! Once your room is clean and you can lay on the floor with out touching anything, your mother will demand that it get done to the rest of the house. Not only will help you by having a clean room and less stuff, a clean room CAN improve a persons health.

If you have a place to put a table then get one an put a floor length table cloth over it and you will have an instant place to hide stuff (also under the bed if that isn't already full. If you have no proper place to put things there isn't much you can do about that. But you can try to make places to hide stuff for when friends come over. Like make the space between the couch and the wall just a little bigger and instant hiding place.

I want to give tips that would help, me and my husband have lived very messy a long time and are getting a lot cleaner over time so i want to share what has helped us that could help you.<br />
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1. "she buys dog toys and dog treats and just leaves everything where ever." ***Storage bins and organizing shelving is awesome. You know kids have toy boxes, right? Get one for your dog. If you are super poor, you will have to use cardboard boxes but you can wrap the outside in wrapping paper. Otherwise, buy something better. The dog treats you could put on top of the fridge, in a cabinet...or even in the dog toy box if it has a lid where the dog can't get to it unless you take it out.<br />
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2. "she has a few long haired cats" (I have 2 maine coon cats myself) and they get hairballs a lot and my mom has to yell at her just to get her to clean it up." ***Cleaning up hairballs/vomit is easy. You will need the following things: either paper towels or a disposable rag, rubber cleaning gloves(if you are like me and fear getting it on your hands), and a carpet cleaner that says it cleans up pet stains on the bottle. First, use a paper towel or napkin to pick up the worst and ball it up and throw it away. Then follow the directions on the cleaning bottle, and clean the stain up with a rag if you can(paper towel tends to disintegrate, but, you could double it over a lot). If she can understand it is easy and not messy or gross if she does it this way(especially don't breathe and try not to look at it as you pick up the worst of it), she will not mind cleaning it up.<br />
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3. "she has a bigger room than me with a closet twice my size plus some in order to store the pet stuff but she just doesnt get off her @ss and do it." ***You need to have her see it is easy but also fast, doing it fast will make it less annoying. Maybe she needs some coffee to get moving.<br />
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4. "....fleece tie blankets for everyone around christmas but it was onsale and she went overboard...." ***Get storage containers/bins/boxes, you can even get like a trunk or something and use it as a table to save space. If you can get a storage container that doubles as furniture it is even better :)<br />
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5. "she piles up the couch throws wrappers on the floor" ***put a small trash can next to the couch(one with a lid would look better), so it will be easier for her to throw things away and she will have no excuse. If the couch has only her stuff on it just pick it up and throw it in her room. <br />
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6. "she never helps with laundry or dishes and im sure my mom would help more if she could but she has health problems" ***have your mom tell your sister to help with chores, or you will have to evict her, or make her pay more on bills. As someone who has always rented, maintenance coming over really makes you clean up. Other options would be to only use paper/plastic dishes and utensils and foil for her to eat on(can get expensive though) so there are no dishes, you just throw it away. Do NOT do her chores for her, if she will not do her laundry, then quarantine all her laundry in her room--it stays in her room and only her room and no where else until she cleans it. Put it in her room in a pile. You could put her dirty dishes in her room too, but I think there are a lot of other things to try before resorting to that. Once again, don't wash her clothes for her no matter what.

print some photos of the bugs that live in carpets ..dust mites etc they may realize that mess is not only comsetical but can also be dangerous to your health.....asthma and so on.....<br />
if that does not help i think nothing will.......good on you for trying to be clean..cleanliness is next to godliness:)

The only reason our house stayed semi clean growing up was my dad wouldn't have it be full out nasty. I hated having friends over because my mom never took pride in our house and never bought new things. My parents divorced when I was 14 and my mom, sister and I moved. It got out of hand after that. My mom felt like she should relive her youth. She was gone a lot and my sister was a handful. I once cleaned our whole apartment head to toe for a sleep over and as we were eating our pizza and watching a scary movie a cockroach crawled across the tv screen. All the girls screamed. They wouldn't sleep at all because they were scared the cockroaches would get in their hair. When I was 18 I moved out. I hated living with my mom and sister. My relationship got better with my mom after that. I would visit my mom once a week. I would stay over Wednesday and Thursday. I would clean her house on Wednesday and her and I would cook a big meal for the family on Thursday. Sometimes I would clean my sisters room but not often. Once she had threw up in the middle of her bedroom floor and put a suit case over it. It took me forever to get it out of the carpet. Once while helping my mom move, I found an orange behind her couch...that's what I assume it was...I really don't know..it was almost completely black...I kicked it out of my way...It denigrated and went up in a powdery dust. So gross. I never visit my mom at all. She waits outside her house. I pick her up and bring her to my house for like three or four days at a time. When I go to my sisters..who has two small kids. Its so nasty I rarely sit down. The last time I was there. And this is no exaggeration. There were over thirty cans of Dr. Pepper sitting around. There was trash and crumbs everywhere. I sat down for a moment to hold her son and when I left. My son who is ten looked at me and said. " I can't believe you sat down in there."<br />
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So I feel your pain. I hope you can move out.

An individual's personal surroundings is a reflection of their mental & emotional state. Some people are just very sloppy, don't care, (or sometimes just untrained). Sometimes all three. Others are obsessively clean freaks. Both extremes reveal emotional issues. A balanced view is to be preferred: very willing to work to maintain cleanliness & order, but will tolerate & allow disorder for a time, with a good reason.<br />
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In today's world, an increasingly large percentage of people suffer from mental & emotional problems. Poor diet & Toxicity are powerful factors.<br />
One major & very common disorder is Chronic Anxiety which creates a large number of problems including Depression (just doesn't care about things or life in general). Anxiety makes some people procrastinate with decisions (what to throw away, what to keep, where to put it) because making a decision raises the uncomfortable Anxiety. It's easier to just avoid things.<br />
In extreme cases, this becomes Hoarding. The TV series "Hoarders" exploits these people for entertainment & profit but does not provide many answers or effective help.<br />
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Pyroluria is the number one unrecognized, undiagnosed but very real cause of Chronic Anxiety, even more than low Thyroid.<br />
It is "medically unrecognized" because it is connected to way too many profitable diseases including Panic, Phobias, OCD, Alcoholism, Sex addiction, Bipolar, & Acid reflux. Suggest all should carefully research this very important & very common metabolic disorder.<br />
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Mainstream Medicine ignores it for busine$$ reasons. They also do not want an inexpensive cure for Cancer or to admit that there may be a link between vaccinations & Autism. Both have the potential to ruin them. <br />
Alternative Health people think Pyroluria is genetic. I am convinced that it is a diet initiated, multi-resistant infection, probably a fungus, similar to Candida. Sugar & large doses of Antibiotics seem to make it worse. <br />
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Three unmistakable symptoms of Pyroluria are general Anxiety, lines on the fingernails, & crowded teeth. There are many more. Since Pyroluria can be quickly interrupted & slowly reversed with a particular diet, this strongly indicates that it can't possibly be genetic. <br />
Check your sister for symptoms. It might be part of her problem.

very good answer, michaeloff!

I will look this up now. Pryoluia.(spell practice for me)
In my case my bio dad was far older than my mom. He taught her to C L E A N.
I remember so well how constantly they loudly berated the state of my room. I was almost 3. To me they may have just as well told me to bake a turkey. I was not invested in my stuff as much as they I suppose. When my mom told me from that day (whatever it was) all that was not cleaned up and put away would be given away. From then on this has become my favorite solution. The only problem is that it seems to work best for me and not so much others (my son especially) that of course is such another even longer story. Thank you for the info tho' True8

Well young man, I commend you for desiring a better living space and you deserve to have it. Print off these messages. Remind your love ones that we don't know them so their integrity has not been compromised BUT it may wake them up to know that their lack of respect for your family space shows a lack of respect for the members of your family too. Have a family meeting. Could you make a project of painting a room so that all the mess must be sorted through and organized? I just did that in my daughter's room. She took new pride in her space. Can you afford a cleaning lady once a month? I used to have one and we'd all pick up so she could clean. Could you get a cleaning lady as a gift for your sick mom or suggest it to an aunt or uncle? Sometimes moms feel completely overwhelmed like you are feeling and a helping hand that is not emotionally connected to your space can do wonders. Good luck. You are a brave and wonderful young man. Remember that above all else.

Hi.. painting your rooms will be a good option because this way you all will actually get to see that how many things you own which you do not actually need! You can throw away all unnecessary things, sort and arrange the important stuff and have a cleaner place. You can have a sack or something stored at some secret place and whatever your sis throws, you can just keep it in that bag and lie to her saying you threw that stuff.. hope if you go on doing this, she'll be scared one day and learn to keep her stuff properly... Don't worry.. I know you can do it :-)

I don't think it's a male, considering the screen name. Hahaha.

I have a husband who was like that, believe me the whole throw it away if you clean it up thing works great. And I don't just mean off of the floor: table, couch, counter, etc. I'm not the cleanest person in the world, but there is no excuse for pure lazyness or using someone as a slave.

I'm sorry, I grew up in a horribly messy home too. Take a look at Flylady.net - It's a great , FREE, system that helps you set up systems for housework - I've found it very helpful. Hopefully you can influence your sister and mother to join in!

Well, I clean all the time. My wife does nothing, so I let her know. That any thing of hers, she leave out of the two rooms she has, I will class as trash. She got mad at me at first, but now. I just toss the things in her rooms and do not care. Cats a fur balls, drop the cats a bit of cheese. That will help with that, it does work. If she drops rubbish on the floor, its hers so it goes in her room. I know, its will be hard work for you, but it will get the message a cross to her. Ho and shelving helps to put things on. It you have a lot of them, going down. You can put up a curtain to hide them, from friends coming in. It will keep them off the floor and a low one is good for shoes. They have small draws how that fit under the bed. I hope this is helpful to you

There is a place that would suit your sister's residential needs. It's called a Trailer Park.

I agree with the other posters; living in a trailer park does NOT mean that you're a messy, dirty or sloppy person.

I think that steryotypes are bad and that it is bad enough having to live in a mobile home without the added comments that are simply not true of most who live in said homes!

From a mother's perspective (mine)....I would approach one of two ways - you can either say, if you leave your stuff lying around Im going to pick it up and bin it. That way you are giving her a choice. But the important bit to remember is you have to follow through if she doesnt pick up!!!. Secondly pick it up, open her door and throw it in her room and keep doing it until she gets so fed up or there's no room left in her space (whichever comes sooner) that she cleans up. Her room can be the biggest mess but it shouldnt leak into the rest of the house. Whatever you do stay firm!!

I am sorry you live in this mess but glad that you recognise the mess for what it is . This is a great sign for your future . well done . <br />
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I got my family to start tidying and cleaning with talk about germs, infection , bacteria and mice , rats, SMELLS . It scared them a bit about all the possible health risks in a dirty house, dirty kitchen , dirty toilets . e coli, salmonella , strep throat ... tell them their things smell . People hate to smell, no matter what they say . <br />
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Cleaning wise, I only do toilets everyday and then one room a day . skirting boards , window ledges , hoover dust ..... and it only takes me about 20 mins a day . Just do one room a day . <br />
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BUT .........<br />
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THROW THROW THROW away , as it happens newspapers ....cartons , labels ..envelopes .just - throw . It s a brilliant feeling to unload . <br />
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When you get a home of your own it will be so beautiful and clean and lovely ; I really feel that for you. They are very blessed to have you in that house .

THIS is some of the Best advice you will ever get. Please read it carefully. However I suspect that you already have most of it figured out. Next. The mess is NOT your fault !! It is your moms. She is the mom and responsible for what goes on in the hiuse.

I lived in a pigsty fora while too ( of my own making) and i think one of the biggest things that helped me was "throw as you go", and as the person above me said, clean one room a day.