General Etiquette > Family and Children

What is my obligation here?

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Because almost ten years later I can still hear my now-SIL saying, "How can you stand this MESS?" as she looked around my house when I had 3 toddlers.

In the beginning, after that comment, I used to drive myself cleaning before she came over.  NOW, I still try to keep/make the house clean for guests (a lot easier now that they are teenagers!), but if someone is arriving earlier than expected or (universe forbid it) - unannounced - my bare minimum is to make sure the bathrooms that they would use are clean and well stocked with toilet paper, bar soap, clean towels, etc.

Your MIL is early.  She can just deal with it.

Don't go crazy cleaning.  If dh can help, he should. If mil says anything, "mil, you arrived two days earlier so we didn't have time to get our cleaning done.  If you would like to help, I have several tasks you can do.  I'll get the list and you can pick the one you want to do first."

Or if dh has helped clean and she starts in, I like this

--- Quote from: heartmug on November 19, 2012, 01:40:08 PM ---MIL:  You could have done a better job of dusting.

You:  DH!  Come here!  Your mom doesn't like the way you dust.  She wants to teach you a better way.

--- End quote ---

Nebraska Jones:

--- Quote from: Docslady21 on November 19, 2012, 02:39:03 PM ---
Your obligation is clean sheets on the bed, fresh towels, clean toilet/sink/shower, and adequate toilet paper in whatever bathroom the guest is using.

I used to care what people thought of my home. I used to stress and scrub and cry and with people like my MIL, it still wasn't enough. Now, if the aforementioned items are done and the catbox is clean, I could not care less what someone thinks of my home.

Let go. It's really rather liberating. Ignore rude comments. Your house is not indicative of your worth and any implication of such is purely out of mean girl snottiness.

--- End quote ---

Thank you!  That is wonderful and encouraging for me to hear (especially at this time of year)!   ;D


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