Behind Closed Doors

If you have ever visited my home, you will know that I have a penchant for orderliness. I like everything to have its place and become quite restless if things are left to pile up, allowing untidiness to creep in.  As you can imagine, in a household of 5 people, this happens on a regular basis.

But some people are bigger culprits than others…..

If you take a wander up our staircase, upon reaching the top, you will come face to face with this:

If you dare to open this door, you will be hit with this:

I have tried many, many techniques to alleviate the stress that this room causes: nagging, bribery, reward charts, punishments….but to no avail.  The other week I got so fed up of seeing it in a state of disarray (this photo was taken on a relatively good day!) that I decided to have a ruthless sort out whilst The Teenager was at school.  
That evening, as I went into her room to say goodnight (something I had started avoiding as my stress levels tend to rise the minute I walk through the door), I lay on her bed, sighing contentedly.  I turned to The Teenager and asked: “Don’t you prefer your room like this?” She replied: “No, I hate it! Mess makes me feel at home“.
A lost cause I tell you!

Since then, my method of dealing with this particular ‘bone of contention’ has been to keep this door firmly closed.  At all times.  However, I do have another plan up my sleeve *rubs hands with glee*, one which will be shared with The Teenager when she returns from Guide camp tomorrow….she may not know what’s hit her!

NB  If said plan works, I promise to share. Long-term silence on this matter means we are still working on it.

How do you deal with untidiness in the home?  
Are you a neat-freak like me or do you manage to ignore?  
This is my entry for The Gallery over at Sticky Fingers, where this week’s prompt was ‘door’.

26 Comments on Behind Closed Doors

  1. joy
    July 31, 2013 at 7:45 am (2 years ago)

    I always let my kids have their rooms exactly how they wanted them, i.e. messy, and would only help tidy them if they specifically asked. Their rooms are their own little bit of privacy on the planet while they live at home, so I think they should be left to their own devices. Just my own personal thought. And how I miss them now they’ve grown up and left home.
    Joy xx

    • Suzanne Whitton
      July 31, 2013 at 7:52 am (2 years ago)

      I know Joy, I’ve tried that tack but I find it so hard! I’m now of the opinion that whilst they live at home, they need to respect our house rules and at least make an effort – once they move out, they can do what they like!

  2. Laura CYMFT
    July 31, 2013 at 7:57 am (2 years ago)

    I always kept a tidy room but that’s how I liked it. My sister lived in chaos and disorder! I’m dreading what my kids’ rooms will be like when they are older! Love the sign on her door.

    • Suzanne Whitton
      July 31, 2013 at 3:01 pm (2 years ago)

      I got the sign especially made Laura – thought it was quite apt!

  3. Mari's World
    July 31, 2013 at 8:37 am (2 years ago)

    I can’t bear untidiness either but with two five year olds and a summer holiday on my hands please don’t drop by unexpected, it seems I run from one room to the next picking up everyone’s cast offs and putting them away. So now I am sitting here happily with a cup of tea and will do one massive clear up at 5pm and save my sanity

    • Suzanne Whitton
      July 31, 2013 at 3:02 pm (2 years ago)

      I’m doing the whole ‘don’t worry about it during the day’ thing and then having a mass tidy up at the end – I refuse to do it all myself though!

  4. hurrahforgin
    July 31, 2013 at 8:37 am (2 years ago)

    Does said plan involve some sort of bribery?!

    I am also a bit of a neat freak. No teenagers but i find it hard enough to keep up with the pukey baby and whirlwind of a toddler!

    • Suzanne Whitton
      July 31, 2013 at 3:03 pm (2 years ago)

      Not as such no, just involves me going on strike if it’s not done ha!

  5. Herding Cats
    July 31, 2013 at 10:26 am (2 years ago)

    My God! You can actually see carpet! I don’t think I have seen the carpet in my seven year old’s room for several years now.

    • Suzanne Whitton
      July 31, 2013 at 3:04 pm (2 years ago)

      I am aware that my some people’s standards, this is not particularly untidy…I’m sure it will get worse if I don’t nip it in the bud now!

  6. Sonya Cisco
    July 31, 2013 at 11:12 am (2 years ago)

    I am a horder, we have lots of clutter, but clutter and mess are different- mostly things have a place to live, even the three drum kits….My teenager is a total nightmare,her room is generally a catastrophic place, although she has suddenly had an epiphany this past couple of weeks and we have just sent umpteen bin bags to the dump, and she is designing her room in a shabby chic fashion- lets hope that means it finally will stay tidier! SO maybe you just have to wait for her to outgrow it!

    • Suzanne Whitton
      July 31, 2013 at 3:05 pm (2 years ago)

      Wow Sonya, I bet you’ve been wondering when you are going to wake up! I imagine when it’s their own design, then perhaps they actually ‘want’ to keep it looking nice…time will tell!

  7. Lo Varey
    July 31, 2013 at 7:36 pm (2 years ago)

    Look forward to hearing your plan and hope it works! Our system on this crazy long holiday here in the states is they are given an allowance each week, in return they have to do certain jobs each day (dishes, bed making, washing picked up, keeping their room tidy, help dust etc…) in order to receive it. If they don’t do this, they get 25c deducted off their allowance for each thing. This also works for behaviour too (they have 3 warnings before they have the money taken away)! It can add up. Sometimes they are begging to do chores to earn the money back!! This worked so well last year, they managed to save enough up to buy new scooters in the Autumn!

  8. SarahMummy
    July 31, 2013 at 8:19 pm (2 years ago)

    I would be practically dancing for joy if my boys’ bedroom was that ‘bad’. In our house, that would definitely be considered a tidy bedroom! I like our house to look tidy, but I’m not a control freak and really struggle to keep it tidy, so usually it isn’t!

  9. The Organised Penguin
    July 31, 2013 at 8:26 pm (2 years ago)

    I am dreading the day that bribery doesn’t make the kids clear up their toys! I look forward to hearing if you plan works! I dread the teenage days just because of the mess!

  10. Sara Murray
    August 1, 2013 at 12:34 am (2 years ago)

    Considering what a mess the boys room is already (they are 7 and 4) I hate to think how bad it will be once they are older! I aspire to a tidy house, and it’s not bad (largely superficial mess), but the holidays are killing me, I I feel like they are all walking behind me taking things back out, just as I’ve tidied them away – the wee girl is the worst :) I would love a clutter free existence, but I think that’s unlikely as long as the kids (and their stuff!) are in the house… Love the sign you had made for Emilia’s room!

  11. waggfoods
    August 1, 2013 at 9:50 am (2 years ago)

    I think it’s something people either have or haven’t got. Typists room was a mess when she was growing up, and she hated it but after every deep clean and promise to herself she would do better a few months later she would loose the floor again! However now she has her own house she is much better (although her OH would disagree slightly!) so on the positive she will start picking up after herself, but it may be after she leaves home! Glad I could help BOL

  12. Paul Wandason
    August 1, 2013 at 10:37 am (2 years ago)

    Although I generally like rooms to be tidy, I must admit that as a child I kept mine messy. I agree with your daughter (sorry!) that somehow it makes the place more ‘homely’ and less clinical.

    Now that I’m much older and a little wiser, the practical sides of a tidy place are more attractive…but impossible to implement with 2 children under 4. I do make a positive effort to make sure I don’t spend my time clearing up after them in vain, knowing the things I put away will instantly be dragged out again, instead of spending time with them. They’re only young once…

    Except the kitchen and bathroom. The only 2 rooms I always insist are clean and tidy.

    (And I should add my wife feels the same so I’m not leaving her the housework!)

    Maybe my view will change by the time my girls are teenagers, but for now I think I’m happy to deal with a semi organised chaos as long as my little princesses (and Queen!) are happy with it!

  13. John C
    August 1, 2013 at 1:24 pm (2 years ago)

    Nothing wrong with that, you can still see the floor 😉

  14. Gailann Houston
    August 1, 2013 at 5:45 pm (2 years ago)

    I have the same issue with my teen, unfortunately her mess is not confined to her room . I can’t complain too much as I’m a bit of a hoarder so cupboard space is limited!

  15. Wendy
    August 1, 2013 at 10:39 pm (2 years ago)

    Looking forward to hearing what your plan is…. Adam is only 8, but I hear myself repeating my Dads words that he used to say to us – “If you don’t tidy it up – I’m coming up there with a black sack and i’ll do it for you” !! Actually works and so far I haven’t actually had to follow through with the threat… My Dad did once and he stored it all in the garage, but I though it had gone out to the bin man!!). Didn’t do it again after that!

  16. Wendy {My Snakes and Ladders}
    August 1, 2013 at 10:44 pm (2 years ago)

    Looking forward to hearing what your plan is…. Adam is only 8, but I hear myself repeating my Dads words that he used to say to us – “If you don’t tidy it up – I’m coming up there with a black sack and i’ll do it for you” !! Actually works and so far I haven’t actually had to follow through with the threat… My Dad did once and he stored it all in the garage, but I though it had gone out to the bin man!!). Didn’t do it again after that!

  17. Emily Foran
    August 2, 2013 at 11:00 pm (2 years ago)

    I’m neater now it’s my own home but was exactly the same as a child/teen. I slept with most my books and toys all piled at the end of my bed and felt cosy that way. Only my 3rd child shows any hope of being tidy so far so now know how my Mother must’ve felt, in the end, she gave up and shut the door and left it! xx

  18. Funky Wellies
    August 3, 2013 at 1:59 pm (2 years ago)

    I like tidiness, which is why the doors to my daughters’ bedrooms remain closed too!

  19. DinoMama
    August 13, 2013 at 8:15 am (2 years ago)

    My house is in a neat mess 😀 Every thing are pile here and there neatly hahahha~


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