Why is my house still a mess?

[deleted account] ( 52 moms have responded )

I feel like even though I am always home I never have my house looking clean. Anyone else feel the same? How come I am always here working at it and it is just never done?

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Genia - posted on 03/18/2011

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It's ok, I think most of us feel that way, at least some of the time! #1, when you have a baby it's just plain hard to clean. #2, I think we all have way too high expectations. Everybody cleans when someone is coming over, so all we see is that other people have these spotless houses, what we don't realize is that they're houses are probably messy most of the time too they were just cleaning for us! lol. You know what helped me accept that it's impossible to always have a really clean house? Make some close friends who are ok having you over when their house ISN'T clean, then you'll realize your house is normal too. ;-)

Payal - posted on 03/18/2011

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A clean house IS a sign of a wasted life! i loved the quote Julia. Have posted it on FB and am sure all my mom friends are gonna have a great day today reading that! a guilt-free day!!

Erika - posted on 11/24/2008

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I think from all the posts, it easy to see that you are in very good company. As I sit here on the computer, having a few precious moments of "me time" I have a sink full of dishes, 2 loads of laundry to fold, and a bathroom that could really use a good scrubbing. But I've figured out I can drive myself crazy trying to get it all done, but I won't feel any better when the same things are staring me in the face tomorrow. So instead I try to set a mental goal for myself each morning, I take stock of what's left over from the day before and make my list of what I feel is necessary to get done that day and what would be nice to get done that day. If it's a good day, then all the necessary and some or all the nice gets done. If it's a bad day, maybe only the necessary will get done. And if it's a really bad day, then even some of the necessary will have to wait to another time. You can't beat yourself up, realize that some days you will be a cleaning fool and other days the only thing that will get cleaned is the baby and maybe yourself.

Sal - posted on 03/28/2011

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because you are home, if the kids are out. you are out no one makes mess, today i got everything done (amazing i know but hubby has had a few days off so we got lawns everything done) so i packed the kids in the car and went out so it was still clean tonight when we got home, it was wonderful...

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Arey - posted on 10/04/2013

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Wanna know my secret? A spray can of lysol. Yup. It's clean. It's disinfected.

Mary - posted on 03/18/2011

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I used to work 50+ hours a week (night shift) and had two teenage boys at home who TRIED to help out. My house was nearly always clean. Now I'm a stay-at-home mom to my 3 yr old grandson and most of the time it looks like a hurricane of toys blew through the house. I figure it'll be clean all the time again when he's older. Right now, we're busy!

Crystal - posted on 11/28/2008

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with 2 kids of my own I go for tidy not clean and livable not spotless. there are many days when my husband comes home to toys all over the house, and I just look at him like if you take the baby and deal with the chattering 3 year old then I'll clean up if not you can do it if it bothers you that much. If the baby is napping that's when i vacuum with an older kid in the house the baby is more likely to wake up than if i clean. and we do it together and make it fun. he actually asks to clean the house with me.

Nicole - posted on 11/28/2008

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Man, o man!!! The HIGH EXPECTATIONS we set on ourselves!!!! I honestly believed i was the only one in the world who could possibly feel this way! I have been a SAHM for a lil over a year and recently had a baby boy. So now i have a 3 yr old and 4 mth old and i swear some days i really feel like my husband will go crazy from coming home to a "lived in house". but honestly he doesnt. he is very helpful and dont put any pressure on me to do anything. but i battle with myself because i feel like he shouldnt have to go to work and come home to clean up when i been home all day

Liz - posted on 11/28/2008

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Clean house? What's that? :0) I don't mind not keeping the perfect house. When it gets really bad my hubby helps to clean it up. Last night I said it seems like I get one room clean, but all the other ones are messy! Oh well.

[deleted account]

hahahaha - story of my life! I live for Friday mornings when we have someone that comes in to help me clean the house. At least that way it seems clean/tidy - well at least till Aiden (nearly 2) wakes from his nap...



I find that sometimes he loves to help me clean - so then I let him do a few things - he loves to wash dishes, so I put a few tupperware bowls and lids in the sink, put him on the kitchen ladder and let him play for an hour or so while I get some stuff done. he also loves to unpack and re-pack the dishwasher, and "help" me load or unload the washing machine and dryer. he also loves to pass me clothes and pegs to hand on the line. I try schedule these things when he is in a happy mood and that way I get things done. It's a lot slower, but at least the main stuff gets done.



Ditto - when the kids are sleeping I prefer some "me" time as opposed to cleaning house.

Amie - posted on 11/28/2008

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I think we all experience that! There are a couple of things I have to remind myself of: One, my children, and spending time with them while they are young, are much more important than a clean or neat home. Two, since we are home all day, there are messes being made all day so I'm never going to have a house as clean in the evening as I did when I was working. It is nice to come home to a clean house, but its nicer to come home to a happy family (at least that's what my husband says)

Giovanna - posted on 11/28/2008

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well i made a play room.. which is my daughters room. They coul dod whatever they want in that room i dont care. but ONLY in that room. We play, paint, roll on the floor, play ball..ONLY in that room. So the rest of the house seems decent. Then there is 6 days a week.. sundays off duty lol. One room a day, ironing, dusting, once a week. Everything is on a schedule. I live in italy now and trust me We have it great in the USA and CANADA. Here people visit u anytime of the day without calling.. so your house is open from 9 am till 9 pm. I know i should play more with my kids but showing them to take care of something that is yours is something good. Then i usually make it become a game. We all dust together, iron together(with their toy iron) fold clothes put them away. And i talk and play, and learn colors and count.... it works for me..:)

Kathy - posted on 11/28/2008

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Someone replaced my husband with an Angel!! Last weekend when we were discussing how to get the house clean for Thanksgiving company, he suggested that I assign one room/area of the house to each of our older 4 kids (13, 12, 12, 8 yrs.), they would be responsible for that section of the house all week - all the cleaning for that area!!! Not only did it work pretty well, it took a LOT off my list of things to do :) !! A couple of the kids even suggested that we keep things this way, rather than the chore chart we've used for so long, where they do a different chore each day and I do all the rest. **Not only was this great idea from my husband, he also helped keep the kids on task (he got off the couch, took notice of something other than PS3) YAY I am so happy!!

Maria - posted on 11/26/2008

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Oh Yeah...Have you ever checked out flylady.net they coach you along and have great testimonies on housecleaning...i learned a lot about myself and techniques...Have a happy Thanksgiving! Maria

Karla - posted on 11/26/2008

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I know what ur talking about sometimes I feel as if I'm walking around in circles..

Keri - posted on 11/26/2008

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I feel sooooo much better after reading this conversation! I know I am not the only one - sometimes I just feel like I am.

[deleted account]

Yes, I do. And it's so infuriating! But my husband told me I rather have a dirty house and happy wife than a clean house and frustrated wife

Christina - posted on 11/26/2008

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Before my son was born, I thought that being a SAHM would mean having a clean house. After all I'm home all day. I had dreams of having a spotless house and my weekends would be full of quality family time. It took me a long time to let that idea go. One day I was talking to another SAHM and she said that it is hard to have a clean house when you are in it all day... and that her house was not clean to her standards until she went back to work several years later. The key was she was not "living" in her house all day. A light blub went off, I live in my house 24 hours a day, I cook countless meal/snacks, play, change diapers, etc and that is messy work. It takes 8 hours for the mess to build, why would it not take that long to clean it up, only after and 8 hour day, I'm tired and want to put the baby to bed and have some quality husband/wife time. So I have accepted that my house may not be perfect but that is ok. I just try to keep things tiddy and it will all aventually get done.

Brittany - posted on 11/26/2008

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oh my gosh yes!! My husband and I moved in when Emma was a week old, now she's 6 weeks old and my house is still in boxes, clothes every where...agh!!!

Penny - posted on 11/26/2008

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hey I want to join this messy house club. I have this same issue too... and now to make it worse I am addicted to this site and instead of cleaning like I normally do, I am here .... as my kids come home from school and drop their coats, clothes on the floor I say "hey !!!! pick that up" instead of me being the maid.... instead of me doing 3 loads of laundry a day and in between the loads i do some thing else I am here getting a pep talk from others just like me... it's refreshing to know I am not alone, this is recharging my batteries... I felt so drained , like nothing i did mattered to anyone all I am here for is to clean up after everyone....no respect ....hmmmm now whn my kids got home today I was here and the were just looking at me like"mom arent ya gonna make me something or pick up after me?" yes I made them a snack, but it was up to them to pick up their coats off the floor....sigh it's good to have the support from all of you....I clean the toilets,wash the floors, laundry,make beds, make meals, clean up after dog,kids DH, flush toilets all day long b/c no one else knows how to here, pick up toys, soothe hurt feelings, scraped knees, vaccuum, dust, and wash filthy kids, read story's, play board games,put them to be only to wake up and do it all again....yes I love being a mom....but man it sure would be nice to not be the invisable mom some days... who do they all think does all the stuff around here? oh yuh the invisable maid, taxi, cook,nurse,etc....LOL..ME>>>> I want to just throw out everything and have an empty home....but that sure would be no fun huh? LOL

Kara - posted on 11/26/2008

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I know exactly how you feel as well. It seems like a clean house like other people's is the impossible task for me! Every time I seem to get one room done, another is a disaster or someone manages to mess up the one that I just cleaned. There are times that it is so frustrating because people say "You're home all day, I would've thought that your house would be spotless" , apparently the kids take care of themselves! lol I think that it is one of those things that will be a mystery to me until my kids are grown and have houses of their own. The one think that would be nice sometimes though would be if I was acknowledged for what I do get done...or better yet if my family realized that it is tough being a stay at home Mom and they pitched in a little more...for now I guess I can only dream :)

Tannis - posted on 11/26/2008

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I feel the same way. You do some stuff and it feels like you have done a lot of stuff but the house is still a mess. I find I procrastinate a far amount of the time. Before staying at home you had to clean on certain days as you were at work the other days. Now you are home all the time so you think oh I can do that later, and it never seems to get done.

Midge - posted on 11/26/2008

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Hi Rachel, you know the motto "a man works from sun to sun, but a woman's work is never done", don't sweat it. Women were made to "help" man not to be a slave. They want a spotless house, hire a maid.

Midge - posted on 11/26/2008

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I live with my husband, my 22 y/o daughter with two kids. You would think this house would be spotless, "not", far from it. My motto is and they know it is, if it's not nailed to the floor, out it goes. Doesn't matter if they bought the item yesterday, if it's on the floor and not in it's proper place, out it goes. I've have thrown out so many things and yet no one has come up to me and ask "have you seen such & such a thing"? I don't feel bad about throwing things out. Look around your house, it things have been sitting there for six months or longer, throw it out. That's what I do. Hope it helps.

Shannon - posted on 11/25/2008

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HAH! My little ones are always one step ahead of me...I put the toys away - they have books strewn all over the floor when I turn around. Forget about dusting, I just make sure the floors are spotless since that's our coloring area, reading spot, picnic area, etc. Surfaces are always disinfected so we can stay healthy and enjoy our home instead of stressing about how it may look. I found that my family, and our guests understand we "live" in our home and that takes away the worry about having everything in it's place.

Allana - posted on 11/25/2008

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I completely feel the same way! I am home with my toddler all day and can't seem to get anything done. Once in a while I go gung ho and clean the whole house (takes me HOURS), but before I know it, its a mess again. Its almost worse when its clean because I get so upset when anybody makes a mess. I definitely feel like being a present mom to my daughter is more important, but I have to be real with myself- it drives me crazy to live in a house that looks like a tornado came through it. I am going to try doing the flylady.net site- Thanks, Andrea!

Helen - posted on 11/25/2008

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I agree!! Making sure that baby is happy is much more important than having a clean house. I have a cleaning lady come twice a month and the house stays clean for aobut 3 days then its back to "did you see the ___? I manage to keep up with 2 things the laundry and the dishes. I usually get my husband to put the clothes away by bringing up the basketful of clothes and placing it on the floor on his side of the bed.

HA!

[deleted account]

I am glad to see , that I am not the only mom with this problem!!! I would rather play with my kids than work. We must remember that the housework will always wait but our kids will not be little forever. keep your chin up and realize this will soon pass

[deleted account]

If you are anything like me... you have little bodies chasing around "undoing" everything you just did. I TOTALLY understand your frustration. That is the way I feel everyday! Someone told me that when you find out your pregnate, you have just committed yourself to a minimum of 18 years of a messy house! So, be thankful they are there to mess it up... what would life be like w/o them?

Tonya - posted on 11/25/2008

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i feel the exact same way. it seems that no matter how much i get done in a day, the view never changes. as soon as one area gets straight, another falls apart. it is quite frustrating. i wonder what my house looked like before i stayed home?

Jenni - posted on 11/25/2008

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I have been stressing about this too, but in church a couple of Sundays ago I heard that if you want a full house, you can't expect to have a clean house. I think that's great. I would rather have a happy house full of life and relationships than have a spotless house with sour attitudes and loneliness. I remind myself of that when I am feeling bad about the messy state of the house. But, I think there are things to do to help us be neat and clean in general, like not procrastinating (like I'm doing right now!!) and having a plan for the day of what should be done. Now I'm also moving in two weeks, and it seems overwhelming!! I sometimes just need some motivation...

Shawna - posted on 11/25/2008

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You guys have made me feel so much better. I read one thread where they were talking about scrubbing the bathrooms and floors. I am lucky to have the toys picked up. With a 14 month old, she just undoes whatever I just did. It's frustrating! Then I have a needy 2 month too. I feel bad because my house is a mess but I think the kids are happy!

Lina - posted on 11/25/2008

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hi rachel. i am lina from syria u r not alone i feel always the same way but it doesn

Jessica - posted on 11/25/2008

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Yes, he does focus on the kitchen counters more than anything--in our small house, this surface sometimes becomes a makeshift office with organized piles of paper to be filed, etc. Good point, Erika, maybe I'll try to at least get that one area cleaned up and see if he gives me a break. :)

Erika - posted on 11/24/2008

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Jessica: Is there 1 thing that your husband tends to focus more on? If so I'd try to get that done before he gets home and not stress so much about the rest. My husband tends to use the living room floor as a measure of clean, so if I don't have time to vacuum before he gets home, I try to at least have it straightened. He doesn't expect spotless, but that makes him feel like the house is calmer,less chaotic.

User - posted on 11/24/2008

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i am sure that it is clean! when you have little one's, one tends to feel that way!

Jessica - posted on 11/24/2008

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He actually has spent a whole weekend with the two kids by himself, so unfortunately he can say that he has done it. We just have differing opinions on what the priorities are--don't get me wrong, he is an amazing dad and husband, he's just a bit of a clean freak. He will clean everything after the kids are in bed, whereas I'm exhausted and just want to sit down and eat and watch TV! Does that make me lazy? I don't think so, but there's the disagreement...He compliments me all the time, saying I'm the best mom in the world and he loves how I take care of the kids, he just wants the counter spotless all the time. Ugh.

Kathy - posted on 11/24/2008

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hey, don't sweat it! If only one room gets clean, I feel I FINALLY accomplished something - and the only kid I've got home is the three year old - she's a little more independent than a baby who takes 24/7 care. My first husband expected near perfection, and we only had one child. Now, my blended family (5 kids) has taught me that a cluttered or messy house means that we have a place to live - thank the Lord!! If my house were always clean, then I'm being a neglectful mother and wife. Go take a break - eat some chocolate and put up your feet!! you deserve it!!

Christine - posted on 11/24/2008

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Jessica let your husband spend 24 hours with the kids and cleaning the house and doing everything you do in a 24 hour period. Anyone can go to work outside the home and come home and say this isn't clean or that is still there how come?, but it takes someone very special to come home and say honey you have done a great job the kids are happy and then help you with dinner and pick up toys when the kids are in bed.

Kelly - posted on 11/24/2008

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Are you sure your not talking about my house!! I feel EXACTLY the same way! With the kids and pets, I could clean for 24 hours straight and it still not be the way I want it. But then I sit back and realize how great I have it, to actually be able to be home with my babies! So enjoy them while they are small. The house will always be there to clean!

“Cleaning and scrubbing can wait for tomorrow,
For babies grow up, I’ve learned, to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust, go to sleep.
I’m rocking my baby, and babies don’t keep.”

[deleted account]

Ok, so I know I just posted, but I was reading my email and found this quote that I wanted to share.
"Keeping house is like threading beads on a string with no knot on the end."

lol So true!

[deleted account]

Sometimes "Out of sight, out of mind" can really help.
I'll pick up all the toys in the living room and put it in a laundry basket and stick it in my kids' rooms till I can get to helping the kids put it way. It is amazing how much cleaner your house appears when all the kids' toys are Out of sight!

Jessica - posted on 11/24/2008

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I completely agree--the mess can wait, my babies are growing up too fast! Now, if I could convince my husband of this..... We've discussed at length how hard it is to actually get things done around the house with two kids--he still respectfully asks me to try to keep it clean because he says it is very stressful to walk into a house that is a mess at the end of the day. I see his side but want him to cut me some slack if I haven't been able to get to everything some days. Any clever responses to that?

[deleted account]

Amen! A clean house IS a sign of a wasted life!
I use to worry that I was being graded as a mom on the things that everyone else could see...like my house being clean! But we as moms need to learn to say, "Damn right I got a sink full of dirty dishes! But I'm a good mom, a relaxed mom, and my kids are happy! I'll get to the dishes when I'm done playing with the kids!"

[deleted account]

I totally understand! Sometimes I wonder if it's because I'm just lazy (i.e. here I am on the computer while the baby's sleeping when I could be cleaning...). Then again, I have to remember that it's important for me to take some time for myself and just let the mess be. If I don't take care of myself, I can't take care of the mess...or my family!
Plus, my husband is a bit of a slob (he knows, we've talked about it...I'm constantly nagging ::rolls eyes::), and his brother lives with us as well. So among TWO men, 3 cats, the baby and myself...the mess never ends haha ;)
I just take it day by day, task by task...A clean house is a sign of a wasted life ;D

Jenny - posted on 11/18/2008

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It isn't ever done or ever up to your probably very high expectations but if you can get it to a level that you are at least comfortable with and then maintain it in a manageable and reasponable way, it is possible.

Karen - posted on 11/18/2008

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HI Rachel,, I am the same, I used to stress about it, but don't anymore, it will get done in your own time, and the kids aren't little for to long. I don't know how old your child is but I give my 2 year old a cloth and he pretends to help me I put the music on and we dance and try and have some fun while doing the housework.

Jennifer - posted on 11/18/2008

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Hey Rachel! I definitely feel the same way. I've tried several things like putting Julia down for a nap, but I'm afraid if I start cleaning, I'll wake her up. I've put in her in her Exersaucer w/ a video and started cleaning, but I don't like to do this often b/c I feel like I should be letting her play and I should be in there with her. Of course, Julia doesn't like that idea at all anymore b/c she is much more mobile and curious now. I've tried tackling one or two things a day, but by the end of the week, I have to start all over. Oh well, the house will just have to wait until my kids are in college! :)

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