Need an attitude adjustment about messy dishes

November 7, 2019
4 upvotes

Background:

I’m 33/ he’s 47/ his daughter is 20.

RPW award for 2+ years. RP aware for longer. He works more than full time running his own company.

Together with my boyfriend for 7 years, living together for about 1.5 years. When I first met him his house was always meticulous and clean. A couple things were different then: he ate out frequently, his daughter wasn’t around on the days that I would be there, and I think he did what any decent guy would do and tidied up a bit before I arrived.

When I moved in I vowed to rise to his standards. I’ve used plenty of strategies to keep the house clean. I make the bed as soon as I get up. I always put my shit in the hamper (stupid, but this is an improvement for me) I always scan a room for things I can pick up and put away as I pass through other rooms. I try to clean while I’m cooking. I start laundry before I have my coffee so I can set some of the passive cleaning in motion.

I came from a very messy family and my mom did almost all of the cleaning. I realize that there is a healthy amount of karma going on here. And I can find the humor in this situation. My boyfriends home is so beautiful. It’s large and clean, well maintained, beautiful backyard and furniture, nice neighborhood, ...I seriously have every comfort. Even though I make a lot of money I wouldn’t be able to ever afford a living situation like this with a stranger/roommate at fair market value.

Problem:

So his daughter is 20 years old. She just doesn’t help in the day to day tasks that I need her help with. A funny pet peeve of mine is that she fills the washing machine with dirty clothes and doesn’t even run it. This is not a new problem. He’s talked to her. I’ve talked to her. I’ve Venmo charged her $10 or $20 after angry texting her picture of the overflowing trash. She goes to college part time, works part time, and sleeps and watches anime full time.

I work 14h shifts three days a week. And I set the kitchen up to be clean the days before I go to work. I run the dishwasher, take out the trash, clean out the fridge, stock the fridge with groceries. My boyfriend and I split the cost of groceries and I take her requests and lists for things she wants, and I handle it.

But then I go to work. Nobody empties the dishwasher, they just open the racks and take the dishes or utensils they need and move on. Nobody takes out the trash. Nobody brings in their dishes from the coffee table in the living room. I especially love when she leaves her bowls and chopsticks directly on the couch. He’s at work these days and he at least puts his dishes in the sink when he eats our leftover meals.

Sometime his daughter goes on a rampage, she cleans the kitchen top to bottom, dusts the insides or the drawers, wipes down the cabinets, cleans out the crumb trays, organized the pantry and wipes down the windows. This happens a few times a year. Awesome. These are all things that I would get to if I wasn’t feeling bitter about playing catch up on my days off. Most days there are so many dishes that It’s more than a single load in the dishwasher.

What I’ve tried to do to fix the problem:

I try to do my part to just stay in my own lane and not try to control other people.

I take genuine pride in keeping the house clean when I’m home.

We still use a housekeeper twice a month, though I initially resisted this.

He’s talked to her, and she improves for a day or two and then goes back to her old ways.

What I want:

I want an attitude adjustment more than I want advice about how to change her. I was doing the exact same shit at her age and had a bunch of other problems that she hasn’t dug herself into a hole with. She’s my friend. I enjoy our relationship a lot.

I want to stop shedding all this negative victim attitude and I buckle down and spend the 30 minutes it takes to clean the damn kitchen. It isn’t the end of the world and I’m trying to be joyful and pleasant.

I don’t blow up about this problem but I do go through mental gymnastics about trying not to bring it up to her when I’m angry, versus trying to say something in a timely manner so I didn’t wait for it to become a crisis before I say anything.

It just bothers me. Maybe I just needed to vent. Maybe I just need some positive affirmations. I don’t know.

TL;DR My LTRs daughter is messy and I’m tired of feeling negative about it.

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