How are you as a homemaker? If you're good (or if you've learned), any advice for those who are not?

Lamkins

Woodpecker
Woman
Protestant
I'm an INTJ. I have a running list in my head of the things that have to be done. Once I finish the task, I mark it off and go onto the next, no fanfare. It needs to be done, so I take care of it.

As an INTP I busted out laughing at a running list in my head. I‘d get items finished, forget other items, not realize I’d forgotten them, then a week later at 10 p.m. while browsing Roosh I’d suddenly remember the items I forgot. The best thing for me is a list on my phone since it will never get lost like a list in my head or on paper, although I do miss crossing things off.
 

PVW

Sparrow
Woman
Protestant
As an INTP I busted out laughing at a running list in my head. I‘d get items finished, forget other items, not realize I’d forgotten them, then a week later at 10 p.m. while browsing Roosh I’d suddenly remember the items I forgot. The best thing for me is a list on my phone since it will never get lost like a list in my head or on paper, although I do miss crossing things off.
I find, though, that keeping lists are helpful as well. It's great to cross them off one at a time, especially if things are getting busier.
 

MBell

Sparrow
Woman
Orthodox
I have to say that I am very similar to a lot of you and deal with the same challenges. Right now I am just doing the housekeeping for myself but I am trying to develop skills should my situation hopefully change in the future. One small thing I have found to help me is that I am more motivated when I see cleaning as an opportunity to take care of the possessions I treasure. My grandma taught me to sew and knit, so I enjoy dusting the items that we made together. I try to display keepsakes that I want to preserve so I am more likely to keep my surroundings in tip top shape. It may sound silly but it is a tip that has worked for me.
 

SchoolApple

 
Banned
Woman
Strict routine works best. I usually save heavy cleaning for Monday's and divvy easier chores to kids during the week. Friday Sat and Sunday are no chores except cooking easy stuff.
 

IconWriter

Robin
Woman
Orthodox
I struggle greatly with homemaking. First and foremost, it does NOT come naturally to me. I have a bit of an "absent-minded professor" personality. I'm FANTASTIC at nerdy academic stuff (which is a blessing I'm grateful for as a homeschooler), but I'm terrible at keeping my environment neat and tidy.

It becomes very all-or-nothing. In cases where my environment IS neat (just moved; just had car detailed; just cleaned for company, etc.) I can keep up on it IF I do it perfectly. But that first time where something happens (I get sick; we don't clean the car out right away after a trip, etc.), oh man, it all goes to pieces. It's like I can only clean that day's worth of mess; not more than a day. It's easy to say, "Well, just don't let more than one day accumulate", but that isn't real life.

It also doesn't help that I live with other people. It's bad enough keeping on top of my own mess, but when there are other people who don't automatically take care of their stuff... well, it just gets to be a lot.

Any thoughts or advice? Does anyone else share these struggles?
Of course. I have been following an organizing website for years that is full of tips about home and living. Things that help: making lists of projects broken down into smaller tasks, prioritizing them, scheduling them a few at a time each day, lowering expectations, getting help, etc.
 

Starlight

Kingfisher
Woman
Protestant
Of course. I have been following an organizing website for years that is full of tips about home and living. Things that help: making lists of projects broken down into smaller tasks, prioritizing them, scheduling them a few at a time each day, lowering expectations, getting help, etc.
Maybe not so much “lowering” expectations but being realistic and that’s one thing I have struggled with but have been doing better about. I’ve kind of come to terms with the fact that my husband will always throw his coat over the back of one of the dinning chairs (instead of hanging it on the coat rack right next to the door ugh lol) and will always kick his shoes off by the couch instead of by the door. And I’m trying to cherish the little messes my children make. There will be a day when I wish our dinner table was covered in Pokémon cards again and I’m going to miss finding random baby socks shoved in the most bizarre places and the backpacks on the floor and the crayon marks on the counter… My perspective on housekeeping has really changed in the last few months; I was always internally feeling like I was battling my family over silly OCD stuff on my end. And it seems kind of like a “duh” thing but it can be difficult to “let go,” especially if you really like a tidy house and everything in its place.

Also, would you mind linking the organizing website that you’ve been following? I’m always looking for good housekeeping shortcuts, organization ideas, and uplifting advice on the subject.
 

Nordwand

Kingfisher
Other Christian
Maybe not so much “lowering” expectations but being realistic and that’s one thing I have struggled with but have been doing better about. I’ve kind of come to terms with the fact that my husband will always throw his coat over the back of one of the dinning chairs (instead of hanging it on the coat rack right next to the door ugh lol) and will always kick his shoes off by the couch instead of by the door. And I’m trying to cherish the little messes my children make. There will be a day when I wish our dinner table was covered in Pokémon cards again and I’m going to miss finding random baby socks shoved in the most bizarre places and the backpacks on the floor and the crayon marks on the counter… My perspective on housekeeping has really changed in the last few months; I was always internally feeling like I was battling my family over silly OCD stuff on my end. And it seems kind of like a “duh” thing but it can be difficult to “let go,” especially if you really like a tidy house and everything in its place.

Also, would you mind linking the organizing website that you’ve been following? I’m always looking for good housekeeping shortcuts, organization ideas, and uplifting advice on the subject.
A slice of toast, thickly spread with butter and jam, and inserted into the VCR, was very much a thing in my day.
 

IconWriter

Robin
Woman
Orthodox
Maybe not so much “lowering” expectations but being realistic and that’s one thing I have struggled with but have been doing better about. I’ve kind of come to terms with the fact that my husband will always throw his coat over the back of one of the dinning chairs (instead of hanging it on the coat rack right next to the door ugh lol) and will always kick his shoes off by the couch instead of by the door. And I’m trying to cherish the little messes my children make. There will be a day when I wish our dinner table was covered in Pokémon cards again and I’m going to miss finding random baby socks shoved in the most bizarre places and the backpacks on the floor and the crayon marks on the counter… My perspective on housekeeping has really changed in the last few months; I was always internally feeling like I was battling my family over silly OCD stuff on my end. And it seems kind of like a “duh” thing but it can be difficult to “let go,” especially if you really like a tidy house and everything in its place.

Also, would you mind linking the organizing website that you’ve been following? I’m always looking for good housekeeping shortcuts, organization ideas, and uplifting advice on the subject.
Yes, forgive, and cherish these little messy habits of your family. Meanwhile this site has helped me. It used to be a forum, like this, for sharing everything home-making/organizing. So she has a wealth of info to share through newsletters, etc.: https://www.getorganizednow.com/
 

Ah_Tibor

Kingfisher
Woman
Orthodox
I'm good at cooking. I'm in the "clean as you go" camp-- pick up the toys, vacuum, etc. I try to clean the bathroom once a week but spot clean it otherwise (I have a dust pan next to the litter box to sweep up kitty mess).

My parents have hoarder tendencies and I try to break that habit and just throw things away. I do save random things (for some reason I always save the cardboard dividers from tea boxes for bookmarks, idk) and am ok with it, but try to keep it organized. My in-laws are mild germaphobes (they separate their garbage so it doesn't get "messy") so sometimes my husband and I butt heads, but I think we even each other out, lol

We're also in an apartment so daily cleaning doesn't take that long at all. I'll put more effort into decorating once we have a house. I just want our own washing machine :-( BECAUSE THERE'S A "COIN SHORTAGE"
 

Early Bird

Robin
Catholic
Hi Ladies,

I've enjoyed this thread and as @Ah_Tibor says above, I am also in the "clean as you go camp"
Hopefully this is the appropriate place to post my question. If not, please let me know -- I don't want to hijack your thread.

Essentially, I am struggling with bringing out the homemaker in my wife.

We are both fairly neat and tidy, and our home is always clean. The problem is that I find myself doing most of the domestic work.
I am a healthy, consistent and high-energy guy -- always waking up early to exercise and dutifully knocking off the to-do's. I'm happy to do all the 'man stuff' like landscaping the yard, fixing things around the house, cleaning the garage, taking out the trash, etc. While I'm a traditional guy and expect my wife to 'match' me in terms of her equivalent effort/output in her respective roles, I'm not lazy and am willing to help out wherever needed. I've lived alone for years before marrying and I'm no stranger to cooking and cleaning.

My wife and I had very different upbringings. I was raised in a more traditional home where my father was the head of the household and my mother stayed home to raise the children. She cooked homemade meals, did the laundry and the cleaning. My wife was raised in a more modern atmosphere with a feminist mother. Her dad was 2nd fiddle. Their home was (and still is) always chaotic, cluttered and messy. Her parents yelled at each other constantly and her dad did most of the cooking. My wife is not messy but the lingering subconscious influence of her upbringing prevents her from seeing clearly defined, traditional gender roles. I knew this was a problem going into the relationship, and that I'd have my work cut out for me. I'm trying to lead by example and be such a good and powerful masculine force that she gets the hint and becomes a better, more ladylike woman.

When we started dating and she first met my family, I could tell she was intimidated by the traditional atmosphere. She was uncomfortable with the more formal and ordered setting compared to the more free for all type environment she was used to. My mother taught her a few tricks of the trade. She gave her some recipes and encouraged her cooking. Happy to see that my wife genuinely enjoys this, I've encouraged her more still. I've even offered to get her professional cooking lessons if she wanted.

I can't imagine watching my wife struggle to split wood or do some sort of heavy, masculine chore while I blissfully luxuriate in a hammock sipping iced tea. I would feel shame and embarrassment, and most importantly, would not want my wife to suffer under those conditions, conditions that would slowly harden her and sabotage her femininity. I would immediately leap up and grab the axe from her, as I would a loaded gun from a child. It would be for her safety, but also I wouldn't want to witness her do anything that would compromise my attraction for her. Like belching or swearing like a trucker...save that for when I'm not home. So wouldn't the inverse be obvious? Would she not feel a surge of shame or guilt if she saw me vacuuming and doing the dishes after working all day? Would she not see me in a more effeminate light?

I feel resentment towards my wife for getting a free ride so to speak, or taking advantage of me. It's my duty to lead her, and guide her with love but guide her firmly.

How would you suggest I go about solving this problem? Do you suggest I stop helping out as much, and let the chaos rise up so that she notices how much I do and is forced to solve the problem herself?
 

messaggera

Kingfisher
Woman
Catholic
How would you suggest I go about solving this problem? Do you suggest I stop helping out as much, and let the chaos rise up so that she notices how much I do and is forced to solve the problem herself?
Hello. A lot could be shared. But I have a question: does she work outside the house full time?

It is great you help out around the house like you do, husbands are blessings when they do help keep things in order too.

Does she walk, hike, or do any exercising outside the home? I guess what are her commitments in the marriage as roles she completes as a wife?
 

Early Bird

Robin
Catholic
Hello. A lot could be shared. But I have a question: does she work outside the house full time?

It is great you help out around the house like you do, husbands are blessings when they do help keep things in order too.

Does she walk, hike, or do any exercising outside the home? I guess what are her commitments in the marriage as roles she completes as a wife?
Thank you kindly for your reply.

She does work outside the house part time. Certain times during the year she is busier with work than other times. I am the main bread winner in the household, and we both have somewhat flexible schedules. If she chose not to work anymore we would be ok financially, and I let her know that she is free to work if she wishes.

Any walking, hiking or outdoor recreation is done together. She does not really have any defined roles or commitments as a wife, as most things are split. A donkey is a horse made by a committee as they say...
I would rather make dinner once or twice a week all on my own, and she does the same the remaining 80-90% of the time, than ‘collaborate’ all the time in half-hearted confusion. I wish she would instinctively know what needs to be done, like seeing I’m angry or frustrated or tired and having a cold drink ready without asking. Just little acts of service to show love. We have to serve each other.

I’m not holding her to the same standard as a 1950’s leave it to beaver type housewife as she is not home full time. I would just like to see her take up those traditional roles with more frequency and gusto.
 

Starlight

Kingfisher
Woman
Protestant
She does work outside the house part time. Certain times during the year she is busier with work than other times. I am the main bread winner in the household, and we both have somewhat flexible schedules. If she chose not to work anymore we would be ok financially, and I let her know that she is free to work if she wishes.
I wish she would instinctively know what needs to be done, like seeing I’m angry or frustrated or tired and having a cold drink ready without asking. Just little acts of service to show love. We have to serve each other.
I would just like to see her take up those traditional roles with more frequency and gusto.
I am struggling with bringing out the homemaker in my wife.
[snip]
We are both fairly neat and tidy, and our home is always clean. The problem is that I find myself doing most of the domestic work.
[snip]
My wife was raised in a more modern atmosphere with a feminist mother. Her dad was 2nd fiddle. Their home was (and still is) always chaotic, cluttered and messy. Her parents yelled at each other constantly and her dad did most of the cooking. My wife is not messy but the lingering subconscious influence of her upbringing prevents her from seeing clearly defined, traditional gender roles.
I feel resentment towards my wife for getting a free ride so to speak, or taking advantage of me. It's my duty to lead her, and guide her with love but guide her firmly.

How would you suggest I go about solving this problem? Do you suggest I stop helping out as much, and let the chaos rise up so that she notices how much I do and is forced to solve the problem herself?
Do you think that you might be sending her a mixed message? On one hand, you are allowing her to work outside the home (when it seems she doesn’t have to) while on the other hand also wanting a traditional home life. For a woman who doesn’t seem to have a traditional foundation this might be confusing for her. I would encourage her to quit her part-time work and focus solely on being a homemaker. Any other work outside the home should be “in addition to” her home obligations. If she can’t fulfill her household duties, then you shouldn’t allow her the “freedom” to work if that makes sense. (I certainly understand that there may be scenarios where a woman may need to add financially to the household income but that doesn’t seem like this situation.)

As for “instinctively knowing what needs to be done” is something that a woman usually learns from growing up in a traditional home (I’m sure there are outliers) from watching how their mothers treat their fathers. I’ve heard (haven’t read it) that The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands is an excellent book that addresses some of these issues.
 

IconWriter

Robin
Woman
Orthodox
We can avoid all kinds of problems that arise, especially in a new marriage, if important things are worked out early/ahead of time, through marital counseling with a priest, or clergy. Isn't it better to concentrate working on our own selves, our own shortcomings, rather than marrying someone with the idea of changing them?
 

Early Bird

Robin
Catholic
Do you think that you might be sending her a mixed message? On one hand, you are allowing her to work outside the home (when it seems she doesn’t have to) while on the other hand also wanting a traditional home life. For a woman who doesn’t seem to have a traditional foundation this might be confusing for her. I would encourage her to quit her part-time work and focus solely on being a homemaker. Any other work outside the home should be “in addition to” her home obligations. If she can’t fulfill her household duties, then you shouldn’t allow her the “freedom” to work if that makes sense. (I certainly understand that there may be scenarios where a woman may need to add financially to the household income but that doesn’t seem like this situation.)

As for “instinctively knowing what needs to be done” is something that a woman usually learns from growing up in a traditional home (I’m sure there are outliers) from watching how their mothers treat their fathers. I’ve heard (haven’t read it) that The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands is an excellent book that addresses some of these issues.
Thank you for the book recommendation.
I agree re learning these things from youth, by observing the dynamic between your parents.

I hope this does not come across as arrogant or offensive — I feel my willingness and patience to teach/guide her is a benevolence of sorts. Showing her what she missed, the proper Godly order of the universe (and its microcosm in the home) and to lead her to a better and more complete life. We should all be open to spiritual growth and change.

She has told me previously that no one has ever treated her so well, and made her feel like such a lady. Her parents once remarked how happy she seemed once we started dating. I think she sold herself short with previous relationships and ended up ‘wearing the pants’ with a few deadbeat beta guys.

She didn’t get the memo growing up, and that’s ok. There are many stories of people coming from all sorts of backgrounds and transcending those things. I hope to show her by example, it’s just that after so many demonstrations and gentle requests, she isn’t really grasping it. She also gets defensive whenever I try to discuss these issues.

Regarding her work, it’s something that is important to her. Perhaps I could have been more adamant that she stop working? I’m open to that explanation. I don’t quite expect a completely traditional home life per se, as I’ve already conceded a few things. It’s just that I expect her to grow into her feminine role somewhat. To do the majority of the domestic duties, not all of them. To not seem so forlorn and unsure or uncomfortable with these things.
 

Early Bird

Robin
Catholic
We can avoid all kinds of problems that arise, especially in a new marriage, if important things are worked out early/ahead of time, through marital counseling with a priest, or clergy. Isn't it better to concentrate working on our own selves, our own shortcomings, rather than marrying someone with the idea of changing them?
Thank you.

We did discuss these things and worked through some issues with marriage classes. I agree it’s always best to focus on improving oneself, and I’m constantly trying to be the best I can be. I want to be my best self to serve God, my wife and family most righteously.

I don’t know if changing someone is the best term. I think we automatically change when in the presence of great love, beauty, brilliance or greatness. Our hearts open, and we are cast into a state of repose. A new self is then ushered into being. I prefer to look at it as spiritual growth.

Women have this effect on young men — they help to mature them.
 

Starlight

Kingfisher
Woman
Protestant
Thank you for the book recommendation.
I agree re learning these things from youth, by observing the dynamic between your parents.

I hope this does not come across as arrogant or offensive — I feel my willingness and patience to teach/guide her is a benevolence of sorts. Showing her what she missed, the proper Godly order of the universe (and its microcosm in the home) and to lead her to a better and more complete life. We should all be open to spiritual growth and change.

She has told me previously that no one has ever treated her so well, and made her feel like such a lady. Her parents once remarked how happy she seemed once we started dating. I think she sold herself short with previous relationships and ended up ‘wearing the pants’ with a few deadbeat beta guys.

She didn’t get the memo growing up, and that’s ok. There are many stories of people coming from all sorts of backgrounds and transcending those things. I hope to show her by example, it’s just that after so many demonstrations and gentle requests, she isn’t really grasping it. She also gets defensive whenever I try to discuss these issues.

Regarding her work, it’s something that is important to her. Perhaps I could have been more adamant that she stop working? I’m open to that explanation. I don’t quite expect a completely traditional home life per se, as I’ve already conceded a few things. It’s just that I expect her to grow into her feminine role somewhat. To do the majority of the domestic duties, not all of them. To not seem so forlorn and unsure or uncomfortable with these things.
Not arrogant or offensive at all. We’re having a discussion and trying to help you figure out an issue. With written discourse it’s best to be frank, open, and upfront so there is no confusion on meaning, imo.

Anyway, back to the topic (and I apologize in advance if I come across as brusque, as well, that is unfortunately my writing/speaking style that I inherited from my father):

I’ll write again: whatever she does outside of the home should be “in addition to” what she already does in the home. Is her work more important than your happiness? If you’re upset about it enough to seek help from the forum, it must be really bothering you. It doesn’t matter if she’s saving orphans or whatever if her husband and family are suffering because of it. Her first duty is to God, then Husband, then children, then family, then whatever else. That is God’s hierarchy. (Which you seem to agree with.) Whether her “work” is important to her is irrelevant if her husband not happy.

If you are doing the housework and cooking, that isn’t leading by example. That is doing her job for her. So far, it seems you’ve been very nice and gentle but, unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be working. I hate to say it but maybe you’re being too soft on her. You should tell her your expectations upfront and how you want your household to be. It is ok to show your wife if you’re angry with her and it’s ok to give her a guilt-trip and it’s ok if what you say makes her cry. There was a time in the past when (my husband and I were first married) I wasn’t putting in my best effort towards our household and my husband had to, pretty much, chew me out. Yes, I was upset and cried (a lot) but he was right and I pulled myself together and picked up the slack.

Obviously, I don’t know exactly what’s going on in your relationship but I will tell you this, women don’t respect “nice” from men. I think *you* think you are being “firm” but you’re just being “nice.” From what you’ve written in the posts so far, you are very lenient, imo.

And I’m going to pitch for that book again. Maybe have your mom give it to her as part of a Christmas gift? My mom and I used to listen to the “Dr. Laura Show” (the author of the book I’m recommending) on the radio and she was a legit OG redpill gal (at least as far as male/female relationships go, and this was back in the 90s).
 
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Kitty Tantrum

Kingfisher
Woman
Catholic
Hi Ladies,

I've enjoyed this thread and as @Ah_Tibor says above, I am also in the "clean as you go camp"
Hopefully this is the appropriate place to post my question. If not, please let me know -- I don't want to hijack your thread.

Essentially, I am struggling with bringing out the homemaker in my wife.

We are both fairly neat and tidy, and our home is always clean. The problem is that I find myself doing most of the domestic work.
I am a healthy, consistent and high-energy guy -- always waking up early to exercise and dutifully knocking off the to-do's. I'm happy to do all the 'man stuff' like landscaping the yard, fixing things around the house, cleaning the garage, taking out the trash, etc. While I'm a traditional guy and expect my wife to 'match' me in terms of her equivalent effort/output in her respective roles, I'm not lazy and am willing to help out wherever needed. I've lived alone for years before marrying and I'm no stranger to cooking and cleaning.

My wife and I had very different upbringings. I was raised in a more traditional home where my father was the head of the household and my mother stayed home to raise the children. She cooked homemade meals, did the laundry and the cleaning. My wife was raised in a more modern atmosphere with a feminist mother. Her dad was 2nd fiddle. Their home was (and still is) always chaotic, cluttered and messy. Her parents yelled at each other constantly and her dad did most of the cooking. My wife is not messy but the lingering subconscious influence of her upbringing prevents her from seeing clearly defined, traditional gender roles. I knew this was a problem going into the relationship, and that I'd have my work cut out for me. I'm trying to lead by example and be such a good and powerful masculine force that she gets the hint and becomes a better, more ladylike woman.

When we started dating and she first met my family, I could tell she was intimidated by the traditional atmosphere. She was uncomfortable with the more formal and ordered setting compared to the more free for all type environment she was used to. My mother taught her a few tricks of the trade. She gave her some recipes and encouraged her cooking. Happy to see that my wife genuinely enjoys this, I've encouraged her more still. I've even offered to get her professional cooking lessons if she wanted.

I can't imagine watching my wife struggle to split wood or do some sort of heavy, masculine chore while I blissfully luxuriate in a hammock sipping iced tea. I would feel shame and embarrassment, and most importantly, would not want my wife to suffer under those conditions, conditions that would slowly harden her and sabotage her femininity. I would immediately leap up and grab the axe from her, as I would a loaded gun from a child. It would be for her safety, but also I wouldn't want to witness her do anything that would compromise my attraction for her. Like belching or swearing like a trucker...save that for when I'm not home. So wouldn't the inverse be obvious? Would she not feel a surge of shame or guilt if she saw me vacuuming and doing the dishes after working all day? Would she not see me in a more effeminate light?

I feel resentment towards my wife for getting a free ride so to speak, or taking advantage of me. It's my duty to lead her, and guide her with love but guide her firmly.

How would you suggest I go about solving this problem? Do you suggest I stop helping out as much, and let the chaos rise up so that she notices how much I do and is forced to solve the problem herself?
Get her pregnant, take her shoes away, and confine her to the kitchen. Instinct will take over.

In all seriousness though, if your situation is settled enough that she does not have to work, motherhood is the most obvious path for feminine development and creates the sort of work that is good for women and which strengthens these skills that you seem to find lacking.

If you don't want to put babies in her, then you've thrown all semblance of tradition and gender roles out the window yourself from the get-go and I can't blame her for being confused or not having any kind of intuitive understanding of what you want from her.
 
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