Author Topic: Wanting things done properly  (Read 5945 times)

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Pippen

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Wanting things done properly
« on: November 13, 2012, 02:46:20 PM »
My DIY skills are not flash. I can do a number of things to an acceptable standard but I am aware of my limitations and know when I need to get the professionals in. My father (80) however does not and it is not unusual to come home and find he is at my house making a pigs ear out of some project he has embarked on without my knowledge. Decks and fences hold a particular fascination for him. He really does think he is helping and thinks he does a good job but if you could see the state of the deck he replaced you would weep. It must surely be the worst built deck in Christendom. Builders who have seen it are amazed by it wondering how such a simple thing could have gone so badly wrong.

I'm stripping down some windows at the moment as the need repainting and it has become apparent I need to get a glazier in to take out the glass, clean out the frames and reset them. My Dad thinks 'Oh I'll come over and just throw some new putty around them and they will be fine." I see that as a half baked solution. A kind of patch up job which wont last and won't address the underlying problems.

No amount of explanation of the many reasons I want it done professionally gets through to him. He thinks I am being fussy, maybe I am, but I know what his 'good enough' results in and it is not good at all. I really don't want to hurt his feelings but I simply cannot handle the thought of him popping round and just doing it anyway. He shouldn't be faffing around with my house in the first place and it wouldn't be so bad if he did a half way decent job. It takes every tiny shred of self control I have to remain calm and polite trying to stop him from doing these things. I am nearly at the stage where if I see him here with a can off putty in his hands I will call the police. I know puttying windows is not a crime, but my reaction may well be.

How do you tell someone their 'good enough' is nowhere close to good when they really can't see it?

Shopaholic

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2012, 02:52:40 PM »
First, stop telling him about things that need fixing around the house.
What he doesn't know is broken he will not attempt to fix.

Everything else tell him "it's under control" and quickly change the subject.
If he shows up with a can of putty quickly take him out to lunch or to that new museum exhibit you're just dying to see.

WillyNilly

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2012, 02:58:11 PM »
Can you blame it on home owners insurance?  Something like "wow dad thanks for the offer but if I don't have it done by a bonded professional should there ever be a storm I won't be covered if the windows leak or break, or anything that might get damaged by the resulting water."

LeveeWoman

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2012, 03:02:14 PM »
I'd take his key away.

Deetee

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2012, 03:04:57 PM »
I'd come up with something that he could do (something that is not permenantly part of the house) and direct him towards that.

Maybe make a storage box or prune some trees or something.

Pippen

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2012, 03:18:45 PM »
I'd take his key away.
Ha ha. I have already done that a while back due to him wrecking things inside.


First, stop telling him about things that need fixing around the house.
What he doesn't know is broken he will not attempt to fix.

Everything else tell him "it's under control" and quickly change the subject.
If he shows up with a can of putty quickly take him out to lunch or to that new museum exhibit you're just dying to see.

He comes over at least once a week so unfortunately he knows what things I am working on without me having to tell him. He is just one of those people who go right ahead and do whatever they want despite being told not to and can't understand why the other person is upset. I came home one day to find he had got his weedeater out and for some unknown reason he had completely destroyed my back lawn. What was once grass turf was now stubs and soil. He had totally scalped it and with gouges everywhere. I just burst into tears when I saw it. I had to spray it off and resow it.

Pippen

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2012, 03:22:14 PM »
Can you blame it on home owners insurance?  Something like "wow dad thanks for the offer but if I don't have it done by a bonded professional should there ever be a storm I won't be covered if the windows leak or break, or anything that might get damaged by the resulting water."

Oh oh that is a cunning plan! That could very well be my solution.

LeveeWoman

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2012, 03:22:44 PM »
You need to be blunt with him. Tell him to leave your house and yard alone.

MOM21SON

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2012, 05:27:19 PM »
I agree with stop telling him, but you have addressed that. 

I really think you need to flat out tell him, "Dad, I appreciate that you want to help me, but you are not as good at it as you used to be. When the project is completed you are welcome to come over and see it."

TootsNYC

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2012, 05:32:03 PM »
I was going to suggest that you go break a few things at HIS house, so he'd have something to keep him busy.
 ;)

But then I remembered--it's always much more interesting to wash someone else's dishes, so he'd probably still prefer to come fix stuff for you. (Plus, he's helping his little girl, so there's THAT appeal.)

Otherwise, I agree, you may need to simply be frank and direct.

Jaelle

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2012, 06:33:18 PM »
I think the homeowners insurance idea is a good one.

MIL drafted a relative of DH's to "repair" our sink once. I was somewhat irate, told DH that I wanted it done by a professional and not someone who muddled through it once and now thinks he's an expert. He thought I was being silly.

I returned home from work that day to find a geyser in our bathroom and DH and relative desperately trying to staunch the flood. I didn't say a word. We get professionals now.  >:D
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cattlekid

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2012, 06:37:09 PM »
Ooof....this is such a hot button issue in our family.  My FIL and other members of DH's family think that they are experts at everything.  I've had to pull out the "this needs to be done by professionals" card more times than I care to count.  FIL thinks we just like to waste money as he thinks that he can do everything himself.  I know he wants to feel needed but I always end up spending twice the money that I would have in the first place redoing what he thinks he did right the first time. 

Hmmmmm

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #12 on: November 13, 2012, 06:51:12 PM »
I'd take his key away.
Ha ha. I have already done that a while back due to him wrecking things inside.


First, stop telling him about things that need fixing around the house.
What he doesn't know is broken he will not attempt to fix.

Everything else tell him "it's under control" and quickly change the subject.
If he shows up with a can of putty quickly take him out to lunch or to that new museum exhibit you're just dying to see.

He comes over at least once a week so unfortunately he knows what things I am working on without me having to tell him. He is just one of those people who go right ahead and do whatever they want despite being told not to and can't understand why the other person is upset. I came home one day to find he had got his weedeater out and for some unknown reason he had completely destroyed my back lawn. What was once grass turf was now stubs and soil. He had totally scalped it and with gouges everywhere. I just burst into tears when I saw it. I had to spray it off and resow it.

Pippen, this is key.  I doesn't care what you want, so you shouldn't be so concerned about hurting his feelings.  The next time you catch him doing something you don't want done, say "You know, your just costing me more money because I'm going to have to undo what you've done before I get it done the way I want."

Or if you don't want to be that direct,  "Dad, I know you think you are being helpfull.  So how about I go over to your house and be helpfull by throwing away all the things I don't think you need anymore?"

MOM21SON

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #13 on: November 13, 2012, 07:10:31 PM »
Ooof....this is such a hot button issue in our family.  My FIL and other members of DH's family think that they are experts at everything.  I've had to pull out the "this needs to be done by professionals" card more times than I care to count.  FIL thinks we just like to waste money as he thinks that he can do everything himself.  I know he wants to feel needed but I always end up spending twice the money that I would have in the first place redoing what he thinks he did right the first time.

are we related? 

hobish

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Re: Wanting things done properly
« Reply #14 on: November 13, 2012, 07:38:35 PM »
I'd take his key away.
Ha ha. I have already done that a while back due to him wrecking things inside.


First, stop telling him about things that need fixing around the house.
What he doesn't know is broken he will not attempt to fix.

Everything else tell him "it's under control" and quickly change the subject.
If he shows up with a can of putty quickly take him out to lunch or to that new museum exhibit you're just dying to see.

He comes over at least once a week so unfortunately he knows what things I am working on without me having to tell him. He is just one of those people who go right ahead and do whatever they want despite being told not to and can't understand why the other person is upset. I came home one day to find he had got his weedeater out and for some unknown reason he had completely destroyed my back lawn. What was once grass turf was now stubs and soil. He had totally scalped it and with gouges everywhere. I just burst into tears when I saw it. I had to spray it off and resow it.

 :o I am having trouble understanding this. Did he truly not recognize that it was not an improvement? Or did he think the plants needed to be trimmed back for their own health or something? I just don't get what would motivate someone to do what  you described and call it good. I guess it doesn't really matter when you come down to it; you don't seem to think he is maliciously ruining things, just misguidedly so.

Willy Nilly's idea of blaming HOI is so good. Heck, it might even be true.
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