A Clean House is a Sign of a Wasted Life?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
A Clean House is a Sign of a Wasted Life?
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Tue, 01-07-2014 - 9:35am

From Time.com, the author takes a look at her life and whether if you put too much time into domestic chores it takes away from your career:

In the early morning stillness, before the house was teeming with other people who needed things from me, I found myself engrossed in an opinion piece by Stephen Marche, “The Case for Filth.” His essay sprang off a study showing that young men today are not doing any more housework than their fathers did 30 years ago.

In the days immediately following its publication, Marche’s essay was hammered. “If there is a God, this guy will spend the afterlife scrubbing toilets and vacuuming,” tweeted feminist author Jessica Valenti, joining a chorus of critics. And she was right. Marche makes a pseudo-intellectual argument for why men don’t do their share of the chores (“Even the most basic housework proves ethereal on inspection”) while demeaning women in the process (“Millions of young women are deeply attracted to the gloomy vice of domestic labor”).

Still, I must confess: When I came to Marche’s penultimate sentence—“A clean house is the sign of a wasted life, truly”—my day was suddenly shot. I found myself sitting there at the kitchen island, rattled, wondering if I was, in fact, truly wasting my life. “Let them eat crust” echoed in my mind.

In this sense, a “clean house” isn’t merely about picking up dirty socks or putting away the dishes. It is about taking on a kind of hidden housework: making a home that is warm and inviting, comfortable and comforting; creating a space where my children’s friends like to hang out and we as a family feel ensconced; and knowing, as Marche himself puts it, “who likes what on their sandwiches.”

But doing all of this takes time, lots of time. And, though my husband does his share, often there aren’t enough hours in the day to manage my home and family as well as I’d like and to be a writer, too.

Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2014/01/06/making-sense-of-mess-finding-meaning-in-household-chores/

The only way I survived when I was working full time after my twins were born was that I was able to keep using the woman who would come clean my house every week while I was on bedrest.   It's very hard to do it all, and something will suffer at some point, whether it being your own sanity or time with your family.  

What do you think?  Do you have a messy or a clean house?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-27-1998
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:29pm

None of that supports your conclusion that a frugal person wouldn't help out another person.  I think you are confusing cheap and frugal, they aren't the same thing, fyi.

Frugal:

fru·gal

 adjective \ˈfrü-gəl\

: careful about spending money or using things when you do not need to : using money or supplies in a very careful way

: simple and plain

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/frugal  


PumpkinAngel

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Registered: 06-27-1998
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:32pm

<<Just like Bord said her dh doesn't see well and misses drops of things in the kitchen etc. Some people are more adapt to see things, like something on the floor. >>

Yes, he has an eye condition that prevents him from seeing well, that isn't about being more adapt at seeing things.  Do you think your kids are at the ages where they should be responbile for cleaning up after themselves?  Of course, within reason and sometimes with parental help.

<<So why the implication that you don't think things need to have "homes"?<<

I didn't make that implication.

PumpkinAngel

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Registered: 06-27-1998
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:32pm

blackandwhitemolly wrote:
<p><span style="font-size:13px; text-align:left; background-color:#f6f6f6">Ummm...yes, I am well aware of people who find clutter not a problem. I even know people who are hoarders so I am well aware of it all. &lt;/span&gt;&lt;/strong&gt;&lt;/p&gt;</span></p><p><span style="font-size:13px; text-align:left">There is a great wide range between clutter and hoarder, why do you seem to always assume the extreme?</span></p><p><strong><span style="font-size:13px; text-align:left">Where did I say otherwise?</span></strong></p>

In the comments that I quoted, see your post and above.

PumpkinAngel

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Registered: 01-08-2009
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:35pm
DH and I consider sharing our blessings to be a prudent use of our income and possessions. To me, someone with plenty to spare who would resent the little bit of water and electricity someone uses doing a couple loads of laundry a week is not frugal, but cheap. I think frugality is a virtue, but there is nothing attractive about a cheapskate.
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-22-2013

Yes, I understand that but if everyone helps and cleans up after themselves, isn't the overall burden lowered?

I don't consider having a clean organized home a "burden". Again, it doesn't take much time, IME to have a clean organized home and still be able to have a life. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-27-1998
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:37pm

blackandwhitemolly wrote:
<p><span style="font-size:13px; text-align:left">If items are getting wrinkled, it doesn't sound very organized to me.  </span></p><p style="text-align:left"><strong><span style="font-size:x-small"><span>I must just have more clothes and shoes than you do. Shrug. Everything is very organized and I am able to find what I need instantly. That doesn't mean there is a lot of room for things. I also have a dresser that is full of things. </span></span></strong></p>

You said earlier that your shoes were so bad that you have them in boxes piled up and it is a pain trying to get to them when needed, now you can find them instantly?

I think we have very different ideas of organized, I'm not sure that it has to do with the number of clothes and shoes.  I do go through my clothes every season and toss/recycle into rags/donate many items so there isn't clutter in my wardrobe.  I don't have a lot of room for things either, but I can organize a closet!  lol

PumpkinAngel

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-22-2013

Frugality is the quality of being frugal, sparing, thrifty, prudent or economical in the use of consumable resources such as food, time or money.

If you are frugal with money, then you would not use the extra water and electricity for others that is not needed.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-27-1998
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:38pm

blackandwhitemolly wrote:
<p><span style="font-size:13px; text-align:left">If you claim the items on your taxes, it reduces your tax liability and in turn you can adjust your payroll withholding, thus raising your income and impacting the budget on a monthly basis.</span></p><p style="text-align:left"><strong><span style="font-size:small"><span>Thanks for your input. I have a great CPA though <img src="/forums/sites/all/libraries/tinymce/jscripts/tiny_mce/plugins/emotions/img/smiley-laughing.gif" alt="Laughing" title="Laughing" border="0" /></span></span></strong></p>

No problem!

PumpkinAngel

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:41pm
"If you are frugal with money, then you would not use the extra water and electricity for others that is not needed." That is not true. You can be both frugal and generous. Well, maybe some can't. But we can.
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-27-1998
Fri, 01-10-2014 - 1:41pm

blackandwhitemolly wrote:
<p><span style="font-size:13px; text-align:left">Yes, I understand that but if everyone helps and cleans up after themselves, isn't the overall burden lowered?</span></p><p><strong><span style="font-size:13px; text-align:left">I don't consider having a clean organized home a "burden". Again, it doesn't take much time, IME to have a clean organized home and still be able to have a life. </span></strong></p>

Burden was the word that came to mind based on your posts about always cleaning things, not being able to relax and watch tv or read a book if there is clutter and so on and so forth.  Overall I think keeping a house 100% clean all the time is a burden as well, but I can understand that some just find it necessary in order to relax.

PumpkinAngel

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