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Posted: 6/24/2003 11:39:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/25/2003 7:45:40 PM EDT by Valkyrie]
I do! My wife has managed to clutter the place so bad you can barely walk in here. She Has "decorated" every horizontal space in the apt. with that stupid Home Interiors shit. Even the top of the AC unit has decor on it! At last count there was 247 candles in the living room and kitchen alone. Pictures everywhere of everything and everyone. Almost 100 individual framed pictures in that same space. The bedrooms and bathrooms are just as bad. My apt is like a fucking Cracker Barrel! Then there are the clothes and shoes. She has clothes that she has not worn in 4 years. A walkin closet full! Over 100 pairs of shoes! We argue constantly about this. It is so bad that in the bedroom there is no place to hang my clothes and hers are on the floor, on the stair stepper, on my safe, you name it. The dresser is full, all six drawers of her shit. Mind you she wears only a small fraction of this stuff. Her argument is that the clothing has sentimental value. The decore is sickening and I fucking hate it with a passion. My tatses are clean modern decore with minmal clutter. Hers is to plaster every open expanse of wall or surface with a candle, picture or similar. To be honest I am considering seperating for a bit over this. It all started innocent with a few knick-knacks. Then it became a full blown mess. Her mother is the same way and my father-in-law actually warned me this might happen and that I should shitcan anything she brings home immediatly as he has it worse than I do. he said if she runs home bawling over the fight it starts he will send her on her ass out the door! Guys I am at my wits end. we live in a spacious apt and it is so cluttered there is no place to walk. I cannot store anything in the closets because they are full of her clothes and brand new decorations that she has no place to hang or set. She is continually buying ugly country style shit for our future house. It is in boxes all over the place. If this doesn't end I will divorce her. I think she has some fucking mental illness. Nobody lives like this! My bedroom carpet is barely visible. Now granted I have much stuff. Gun gear, fishing gear, etc. but nothing so volumous as to occupy every bt of living space we have. What do I do?
Link Posted: 6/24/2003 11:48:37 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/24/2003 11:51:38 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/24/2003 11:56:15 PM EDT
Originally Posted By David_Hineline: You got it worse than me. My wife is a reader which I accept, but I do not understand why once a book it read it must be kept never to be read again.
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Why don't you ask your wife? My mom collected books and she spent a lot of her free time teaching adults who couldn't read to read. She treated books as if they are a key to something special, a treasure. My mom was right they are.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 12:38:22 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/25/2003 12:39:40 AM EDT by cynic]
Step 1: Start breaking things. If you can't pretend you're clumsy, hire young children or St. Bernards to do the job. Once she realizes her little knickie-knackies ain't safe, she'll pack 'em away somewhere. Out of sight. Hopefully in a rented storage unit. Step 2: New rule, dear. For the next 6 months (emphasize it's not forever), you're only allowed to bring consumables into this house. Period. Be reasonable, but firm. cynic
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 12:43:31 AM EDT
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 1:11:10 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/25/2003 1:24:53 AM EDT by High_Plains_Drifter]
At least your father-in-law is on your side. Send her home bawling over it and see what happens. At worst she could go live with her parents and you would have at least a year's worth of targets because it doesn't sound like her father is going to let her bring all of that crap home. You know...there is always bulletfest...
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 1:14:02 AM EDT
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 1:22:01 AM EDT
It sounds like my grandma too. Her sickness is Barbie dolls and Hallmark ornaments. TREETOP [:D]
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 1:50:38 AM EDT
Somebody say packrat? [img]http://photos.ar15.com/ImageGallery/Attachments/DownloadAttach.asp?iImageUnq=14090[/img] Anyone try uploading and posting a pic lately? Holy Christ was that a gamble!
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 2:47:20 AM EDT
My wife lives with one. [;)] I just tell her I'm the family archivist.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 3:05:05 AM EDT
My hubby and I both are pack rats. Just not as bad as you described or the picture that was posted. He has his two rooms, and I have the rest of the house. We stay out of each others space and as far as the bedroom, I have all my clothes put away, but he puts his all over the back room and bitches he can't find anything if I do put them away. So I leave it. We both went through our clothes and what we haven't worn in awhile went to salvation army. I also have been better about bringing knick knacks home. If I can't think of where I am putting it then I don't need it.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 3:09:16 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/25/2003 3:40:57 AM EDT by Searcherfortruth]
I discussed this with my wife before we got married, as her mom is like your wife. I told her flat out if she put a decoration in the house I didn't like it would be in the trash in short order. Theres is just to little space in a home to clutter it with stuff that makes being there a pain instead of a pleasure. I just won't tolerate crappy, cheesy decorations in my sanctuary from the world, & you shouldn't have to either. I would give her 1 week to clean out the mess, & then get friends, or family to help haul it to the nearest Goodwill. No if's, ands, or buts. I would also talk to her about storing up decorations for your future home, or you will go through the same crap again, & you don't want that as the pattern for your marriage. I know some will take this & twist it, but I do about 99% of the decorating for our house. I pick the colors, & the decorations. I'm am much better at it than my wife, & she has come to accept that as the truth. You may be better at it than your wife too. No shame in having good taste, or in not putting up with bad taste. It's much easier in the long run to settle it now than to get a divorce, or separate over it. Just have a real hart to hart with her about her excessive, or poor taste, & let her know how important it is to you to have a home you can enjoy, or just freaking walk around in if need be. Honesty is the best policy, & temper it with tactfulness, & firm resolve. Good luck![peep]
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 3:13:49 AM EDT
My mom is one. That house was one large, packratted, horrible mess. She would keep every last article of our childhood clothes, every last magazine and newspaper, and every last piece of non-edible crap that entered the house. It was embarassing to have friends over. I was always so disgusted to come home to such filth after being at someone else's clean and clutter-free home. But what could I do? Now, when she comes to visit and stay at [b]my clean and clutter-free home[/b], she tries to keep every last thing I want to throw away. I've even caught her going through [b]discarded trash[/b] in an attempt to find something she thinks I shouldn't have thrown away. It's causing such a problem that I'm thinking of moving from 150 miles away from her to 1,500 miles away.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 3:17:49 AM EDT
Originally Posted By David_Hineline: You got it worse than me. My wife is a reader which I accept, but I do not understand why once a book it read it must be kept never to be read again.
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The 'stack', as my Wife puts it, of firearms magazines and related reading material that I have accumulated is a little out of control. I re-read them many times and use them for reference. I'm almost ready to part with some of them by removing the articles I need and tossing the remainder. Me, myself & I are very pack-rat oriented when it comes to reading material.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 3:32:26 AM EDT
I'm a pack rat.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 6:06:50 AM EDT
Solution: Control the money. Take charge of the check book, savings account & credit cards. Give her an allowance that will enable her to get by, but not buy any of the trash. Then start throwing out the tackiest stuff piece by piece.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 6:12:16 AM EDT
I accumulate valuable stuff... guns, coins, tools, etc. I guess you could consider me a pack rat in that regard.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 6:23:34 AM EDT
My wife lives with a packrat...me. But I am getting better. After having our basement flood...I was forced to throw away a lot of stuff I have had for years.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 6:33:37 AM EDT
Start a fire. Just kidding, but it would be the most painless way.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 6:57:23 AM EDT
valkyrie, i'm not in a situation like yours, but i can certainly understand how you could be feeling. and i'd likely be having the same thoughts of it being a serious problem and threat to the relationship. the situation you've described is beyond a bit odd and may well indicate some type of psychological issue. i'm not sure what else your gf may have going on, but it seems as if she must spend an inordinate amount of time shopping, decorating, and thinking of one of the other. has this become the defining aspect of her life? also, if you could understand her fascination/obsession with all of the country stuff and candles, perhaps you might be able to help her direct it in a way that is more practical and beneficial to you as a couple. maybe some type of country craft store...or a new interest area all together.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 7:16:11 AM EDT
1. Hide all your stuff (a friend's house would work) 2. Cut the purse strings 3. Start throwing shit away What's the worst that can happen?
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 7:43:59 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/25/2003 7:49:47 AM EDT by The_Beer_Slayer]
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 7:55:18 AM EDT
I'd say there's something deep rooted about this. It's not just your run-of-the-mill packrat based on your description. I know what a "normal" packrat is. I am one. My GF on the other hand has a basis for it as when her family defected from Checkoslovakia she was 10 and the only thing they took was a suitcase. Since then she has a hell of a time getting rid of ANYTHING. I can understand that. We're also looking a meeting of the minds as about 80% of all the stuff we have stuffed into a 4 bedroom house could vanish tomorrow and we'd never really miss it. Since we're planning on moving there's going to be a LOT of stuff shitcanned but as usual she can't follow through, the old resistance pops up everytime.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 8:05:05 AM EDT
My wife is a pack rat. She was unable to throw or give away anything until recently. Our house was unfit for company let alone normal living. I maintained one room in relative order but her habits made it easy for me to be a slob. Oddly enough our condo in Mammoth is neat as a pin, though it does have some closet clutter it is fit for company and clean. Now we are moving to an even larger house with a 60x20 barn and I am negotiating with her on how to control her sickness....and it is a sickness...even she can admit to it. I think she will maintain the house pretty well because she has some plans for it. I'm worried that the barn will become a cluster fuck so we got a 40' container for her crap. I built two big storage shelf units in it and filled them up[ in 2 hours out of the barn. I will be content if all the clutter remains in the storage container. I will also use it as a lever against future clutter. She still buys crap and never throws out a craft magazine but somehow I think the worst is over. She nearly always breaks down after attempting to deal with her crap. Usually it is just re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic and not a full on assault with any vengeance. She has a friend that's worse (so she says), that never even throws out the newspapers. I haven't seen the place, I couldn't stand to. Like someone else here said, much of the stuff she has is ruined from pests and mildew etc. Oddly that makes me happy and sad. Happy it's gone but sad at the waste.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 8:09:36 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Gloftoe: Or make a deal with her! For every piece of worthless "bric-a-brac" she brings home, you bring home a nice firearm. You'll come out ahead too!
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Yep, I agree. Give her the ultimadum (I have no idea how to spell that).
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 8:17:12 AM EDT
I do too. My wife lost her parents at an early age, so she saves everything that has family memories. I try to throw everything out, except my gun stuff,if I am not using it.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 8:30:56 AM EDT
Originally Posted By BusMaster007:
Originally Posted By David_Hineline: You got it worse than me. My wife is a reader which I accept, but I do not understand why once a book it read it must be kept never to be read again.
View Quote
The 'stack', as my Wife puts it, of firearms magazines and related reading material that I have accumulated is a little out of control. I re-read them many times and use them for reference. I'm almost ready to part with some of them by removing the articles I need and tossing the remainder. Me, myself & I are very pack-rat oriented when it comes to reading material.
View Quote
Holy crap, that sounds like me! I have so many car, firearm, and fishing magazines, that when my dad goes to garage sales he looks for good used four drawyer file cabinets for under ten bucks just to store them all. I do very often reread magazine articles, especially the car ones, so keeping those is a no brainer. I hope we never have a fire![:D] I keep thinking I'm going to tear out or just scan some articles and throw a lot away and I never seem to get around to it. I have a habit of keeping catalogs too long too before weeding them out. I keep other stuff too, but that's another, longer story. Give me a small house with a large shed,large garage, and storage area and I'll be in heaven.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 9:29:27 AM EDT
Opps, one of the 247 candles fell down lit and torched the apartment, and everything in it. By some weird coicidence I already have an apartment lined up across town, and somehow all the guns, some vital things, and enough clothes to consist of a wardrobe for both of us were safetly packed in my car. Isnt that weird?
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 1:22:28 PM EDT
[lolabove][Mr.Burns]Exxxalent[/Mr.Burns]
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 2:10:47 PM EDT
ladies and gents NONE of you have it nearly as bad as I do. my dad and brother have so much crap it is rediculous. I was forced to get a cordless mouse because their is no more room left on the computer desk for a cord of any kind because of all of the papers and junk. thier crap occupy's 5 rooms in our house 4 of my dads cars (3 of which dont run any more but my dad just cant let go of) 3 large storage buildings and the attic of our vacation house. and we have a bunch of crap up under the floor here. my dad got it from his aunt berthy. She colleted and saved everything she ever bought. only had to take out the trash 3 times a year. no, im not kidding! When she died her family found several boxes and cloths drawers filled to the rims with old gum rappers! [banghead] my dad has casset tapes,records and 8 tracks that he hasnt listened to since I was born 19 years ago! many are broken and in pieces but god forbid that he give them up. [V]
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 3:30:49 PM EDT
I feel your pain, Valkyrie. My mother is the same way, only worse. Growing up in that cluttered mess was a big negative in my life. I think it really is a mild form of mental illness. I have to fight the tendency myself, which is why I'm glad my wife is the opposite. She keeps the house nice and neat, and she even cleans the basement for me once in a while. Try having a sincere talk with your wife, and let her know how crazy it makes you. She needs help, and will probably be glad if you find a way to help cure the problem. Can you give her one small room, and designate the rest of the apartment as a clutter free refuge? Good luck
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 5:30:21 PM EDT
My mother was like that. After she died I had to go through everything. She still had payment receipts for the house they owned in Texas in 1955!!!
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 7:52:16 PM EDT
Well I gave her the ultimatum today. I told her she cleans up and clears this crap out or I toss all of it. She had a fit that would make a cat with a pepper in it's ass look tame. She threatened to leave, divorce, all the crap she tried I kept a cool head and she complied. 18 trash bags full of clothing and junk from the bedroom alone. It took all day to accomplish. The closet is still ful of clothes but the room is clear and most of the shit is gone. There is still some stuff that has to go but the room is now presentable. The walk-in closet is once again, "walk-in" and the floor is clear of everything that doesn't belong on the floor. The dresser is cleared. I have half to myself and we found about $60 in loose change laying around. The linen closet is cleared out also! Room for towells and linens for once! Next is the living room, which isn't very bad but still needs a good field day. She is in bed sulking right now and still fuming and cried when I hauled all the bags down to the dumpster but oh well. I figure in a week the place will be ship shape and squared away.
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 9:44:53 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 4:05:05 PM EDT by GwenInLA1]
EDITED TO CORRECT URL! WHOOPS! [:I] For anyone dealing with packrats, check out http://www.flylady.net The site is too "cutesy'--however--- the decluttering ideas work. Especially the 'flinging' part, getting rid of items, or bring one item in, one item has to leave. It is a rough process for packrats but can be done. I'm proof...and married a packrat! Gwen FORMER packrat
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 9:53:11 PM EDT
Originally Posted By AZ-K9: Somebody say packrat? [url]http://photos.ar15.com/ImageGallery/Attachments/DownloadAttach.asp?iImageUnq=14090[/url]
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Amateur! You should see My bedroom. It’s much worse. What isn't covered with cleaning supplies is covered with books or boxes of magazines or VCR tapes or clothes or....
Link Posted: 6/25/2003 10:58:04 PM EDT
Bravo, Valkyrie, bravo! cynic
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 4:09:08 AM EDT
Originally Posted By GwenInLA1: For anyone dealing with packrats, check out www.flywoman.com
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Bad link.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 4:24:52 AM EDT
Tell her...."focus my luv" ..we need the house $ before this worthless brick'a'brack"crap, STOP BUYING CRAP AND WASTING THE $$$. Of course you'll have to also. So buy a few new items then put the plan into action.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 4:28:27 AM EDT
Good for you man! It sounds like she listened to you, & now maybe ya'll can live a normal life, & have a place that you can enjoy, & feel able to invite people over with out fear of embarrassment of you dwelling. Good job.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 4:44:05 AM EDT
Originally Posted By GwenInLA1: For anyone dealing with packrats, check out www.flywoman.com The site is too "cutesy' but the decluttering ideas work. Especially the 'flinging' part, getting rid of items, or bring one item in, one item has to leave. It is a rough process for packrats but can be done. I'm proof...and married one! Gwen FORMER packrat
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HA! My wife has stacks of "How to End Clutter" books buried among all her other stuff- digging down through her stacks of stuff is like an archaeological dig. My dear wife has a spare upstairs bedroom called her "office" that she has so full of stuff (medical journals, call slips, medical encyclopedias, etc, as well as memorabilia of our kids) that she has to just about shoe-horn herself to get in......and then there's the mound of papers in the corner of the kitchen....and on the coffee table...she saves everything medical (she's a doctor), esp. since she fought and won a long, drawn-out malpractice case a few years ago- she doesn't want to be caught unprepared, she says. "Yes, but could you find what you need to prepare yourself in this pile?" "I did last time, and I'll do it again", she says.....[rolleyes] And of course, when I threaten to heave it all out in the trash, she threatens to do the same with my gun stuff...[shock] SOLUTION: One of our kids wants a bedroom for himself, and this summer I hope to get all the sh&% cleared out of her "office" to make it back into a bedroom. Then where do we put all of [b]her[/b] stuff???[%|]
Link Posted: 6/27/2003 4:24:34 PM EDT
95th... Junk gets tossed. "Professional' stuff, she can rent off-site storage and see her tax advisor about taking it as a business expense. btw, I edited my prior post with the correct URL. Gwen in L.A. free from clutter
Link Posted: 6/27/2003 4:41:48 PM EDT
Yep...we fight every year when it's time to put the winter clothes in the attic. She wants to keep stuff that she hasn't worn for years and I want to give it all to Abilities Unlimites so we can get a tax deduction.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 7:05:35 AM EDT
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 7:44:00 AM EDT
Valkyrie: Whatever you do, don't threaten divorce. It will only unravel the bonds of your marriage one by one and you won't even know it's happening until it is almost too late. If you are going to do it, just do it or try to prevent it. Never, repeat NEVER threathen! Next, you and you wife are probabaly suffering the symptom of an underlying problem. The pack-rat stuff is just the visible part. What you need to find out is WHY your wife is doing this. Does she feel financially powerless in her life, so buying lots of little things makes her feel better? Is it compulsive behavior that makes her feel safe or comfortable? Maybe she doesn't have nice big things, so she is substituting. Given that she was crying in bed is a good indicator that there is more here than some cheesy decorations. You will be opening a HUGE can of worms getting to the root of the problem, but trust me the problem is still there, and it is bigger than any candle collection. The good news is that solving it will bring about a better relationship for the future and your apartment will stop looking like a flea-market stall. You may want to approach her and simply ask her why she wants all of this stuff. Then, throw away the first answer because it is prepared by her in advance and is not valid. Ask again for the real reason. Take it from there. This won't be easy, just try not to be defensive and really listen. I know all of this advice is contrary to the testosterone driven "kill em all and let God sort em out" mentality that you can expect from gun board folks. (Present gun board folks accepted, of course) You may feel like you have won, but trust me, you haven't. You have only made the symptom of the problem disappear. Remember, she may move on to something even more self-destructive that you CAN'T see and that would be even worse. I wish you the best during this "test." -White Horse
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 7:52:28 AM EDT
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 8:17:23 AM EDT
I can't stand disorder. I have no idea why people keep anything and everything. I couldn't tolerate being around someone who was messy or collected garbage. I like clean simple lines and abhor clutter and mess. TT [wave]
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 12:13:15 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Valkyrie: Well I gave her the ultimatum today. I told her she cleans up and clears this crap out or I toss all of it. She had a fit that would make a cat with a pepper in it's ass look tame. She threatened to leave, divorce, all the crap she tried I kept a cool head and she complied. 18 trash bags full of clothing and junk from the bedroom alone. It took all day to accomplish. The closet is still ful of clothes but the room is clear and most of the shit is gone. There is still some stuff that has to go but the room is now presentable. The walk-in closet is once again, "walk-in" and the floor is clear of everything that doesn't belong on the floor. The dresser is cleared. I have half to myself and we found about $60 in loose change laying around. The linen closet is cleared out also! Room for towells and linens for once! Next is the living room, which isn't very bad but still needs a good field day. She is in bed sulking right now and still fuming and cried when I hauled all the bags down to the dumpster but oh well. I figure in a week the place will be ship shape and squared away.
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Note the childish behavior. She was young when this first started or when an incident precipitated this reaction or else she observed her mom's behavior. It must have worked. Congratulations. Take the $60 and take her out to dinner.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 2:03:42 PM EDT
I can't believe noone has mentioned EBAY!! Make some of the money back--you never know it may start a nice hobby to fund firearms. Even tho it may seem like trash to you it's gold to ebayers.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 9:54:17 PM EDT
Originally Posted By JHill: I can't believe noone has mentioned EBAY!! Make some of the money back--you never know it may start a nice hobby to fund firearms.
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I was thinking the same thing: [b]GARAGE SALE[/B] (even if you don't have a garage, and the apt. manager will allow it). We just had an estate sale at my in-laws' house (m-i-l's uncle & dad died last Aug.), and cleared $600 in 2.5 days. Even managed to get rid of some of the in-laws' stuff they'd been hoarding.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 10:43:10 PM EDT
I been in a house with a lady who had 300 cats and thousands of dolls, My friends dad had the last 10 years of newspapers and magazines stacked in everyroom of the house. My grandmother used to save everything 30 unused purses.
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