Author Topic: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?  (Read 11713 times)

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sparksals

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #75 on: February 22, 2013, 01:34:09 PM »
I think your examples of the differences in overgrown and lawn mowing are a bit extreme.  I don't think it is reasonable for people to mow everyday.  It also isn't good for the lawn.  Your wildflower garden sounds exactly just that.  It is when the weeds are infested in the yard so that it is an eyesore. 

I don't think anyone here is suggesting such extreme requirements, but more of the standard reasonable set.  Mowing once per week, shoveling when it snows, weed removal, especially so it doesn't transfer to other's property.

DottyG

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #76 on: February 22, 2013, 01:43:46 PM »
Quote
It is absolutely possible that your mom and Tom are both unreasonable in their expectations of you as an adult. But since its two separate unrelated people, it is worth considering that the problem is with your expectations as opposed to theirs.

I've forgotten where a mother comes into the story (not saying it's not here - I must be overlooking it).  Which post is that (was it the OP's or someone else's)?

Never mind!  I found it!
 
 
 

Onyx_TKD

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #77 on: February 22, 2013, 01:44:38 PM »
I think you are not being very compromising at all.  You move into a home half owned by his sister and it sounds like you don't want the responsibility that comes with living in a home that requires such maintenance. 

I agree with Tom, you and BF should be doing half the shoveling and half the yard work.   I do think it can wait til you are done from work and you shouldn't have to get up earlier to do it.  However, since you live there, you really should be helping out with the undesirable tasks. 

Why does your desire to have a long lawn  and a snow covered driveway trump their desire to have a manicured lawn and driveway shoveled?   Since you don't have any ownership in the home and you are not married to your BF,   I would think you would want to help around to pull your weight.  Since you have no ownership in the home, the way you are trying to change things in terms of the joint tasks really isn't your place to change. I can see why this situation is causing tension.   I personally think you are stepping on toes when you have no business doing so.

Your bolded statements seem to contradict each other. First you say that the OP is refusing to take responsibility and pull her weight, and then you say she has no place changing anything about the way joint tasks are carried out. The OP has stated that her boyfriend (and part owner of the house) does not do any shoveling, nor did he do so before she moved in. If the OP changes nothing because she has no ownership, then it remains the status quo with Tom doing all shoveling (and lawn work, presumably). The OP is at least willing to consider compromising by doing some shoveling, as long as it's not at 6:30am.

So are you arguing that the OP should help shovel, which involves interfering in the way joint household tasks are handled? Or are you arguing that she should follow whatever custom her BF/part-owner of the house has established, i.e., not shoveling?  ???

CluelessBride

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #78 on: February 22, 2013, 01:51:06 PM »
Oh absolutely, Sparksals - but that is my point. The extremes are clearly unreasonable, but without seeing the OPs lawn, its not clear (to me at least) where on the spectrum their lawn is. Is it ~3inches when Tom would prefer ~2? Or is it ~8inches and looking like it is never taken care of.  I've lived where mowing two or three times over the course of the summer was often sufficient (during droughts, the grass just didn't grow - and watering was limited by a water ban). Of course some summers it would rain like crazy and you could barely keep up with the mowing.

My current lawn, every 5 days would be ideal. But my hours are just too long to mow most week days, so I push it to weekly. By Friday, the lawn is definitely looking shaggy (but not in a vermin inducing way, in a "hope she's mowing soon" sort of way).

Also, the OP referenced mowing the garden - so it was unclear to me whether she has a grass garden (e.g. tall, grassy wildflowers in a flower bed) or a full lawn that is knee high. The largest issue seems to be she isn't on the same page as her housemates. Whether or not her laid-back gardening is an etiquette issue to her non-housemate neighbors isn't clear to me.





Twik

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #79 on: February 22, 2013, 01:59:21 PM »
The OP has said that she considers twice a year enough lawn mowing. I don't know what sort of grass they have, but to me, that's only suitable for astroturf.

I agree with some of the other posters. Houses and grounds take maintenance, and if the OP doesn't enjoy it, she and her husband need to get a low-maintenance home such as a condo apartment. It's not wrong to find such chores unpleasant (although some folk love that sort of work), but it's also not fair to the other people sharing to not do the basics.
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Aeris

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #80 on: February 22, 2013, 02:15:02 PM »
Your boyfriend is being childish and a twit by refusing to shovel at all, ever, but I think you knew that already.

Why does Tom feel the shoveling MUST be done at 6:30am as opposed to 7pm? Because I stand by my assertion that he has a right to insist you guys do half the shoveling, but no right to insist you do your half at 6:30am.

They also have a right to insist that you guys do half of reasonable mowing in the summer - and "reasonable mowing" is a whole lot more than 2 times a summer.

I completely agree that sometimes doing chores you don't care for is part of being an adult and a considerate neighbor. On top of 'neighbor', you all are joint owners. I can't fathom *why* your BF and his sister are joint owners, as they clearly have wildly different ideas of what reasonable property management entails, but for the time being, compromise is necessary - whether you personally enjoy the chores or not.

Just a note, the OP is not married.  Therefore, most likely has no ownership in the property.

Sorry, I wasn't clear - I really just meant that the BF and his sister are joint owners. Even without any marital property issues, it sounds like the BF and the sister should never own anything in common, ever.

sparksals

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #81 on: February 22, 2013, 02:30:53 PM »
I think you are not being very compromising at all.  You move into a home half owned by his sister and it sounds like you don't want the responsibility that comes with living in a home that requires such maintenance. 

I agree with Tom, you and BF should be doing half the shoveling and half the yard work.   I do think it can wait til you are done from work and you shouldn't have to get up earlier to do it.  However, since you live there, you really should be helping out with the undesirable tasks. 

Why does your desire to have a long lawn  and a snow covered driveway trump their desire to have a manicured lawn and driveway shoveled?   Since you don't have any ownership in the home and you are not married to your BF,   I would think you would want to help around to pull your weight.  Since you have no ownership in the home, the way you are trying to change things in terms of the joint tasks really isn't your place to change. I can see why this situation is causing tension.   I personally think you are stepping on toes when you have no business doing so.

Your bolded statements seem to contradict each other. First you say that the OP is refusing to take responsibility and pull her weight, and then you say she has no place changing anything about the way joint tasks are carried out. The OP has stated that her boyfriend (and part owner of the house) does not do any shoveling, nor did he do so before she moved in. If the OP changes nothing because she has no ownership, then it remains the status quo with Tom doing all shoveling (and lawn work, presumably). The OP is at least willing to consider compromising by doing some shoveling, as long as it's not at 6:30am.

So are you arguing that the OP should help shovel, which involves interfering in the way joint household tasks are handled? Or are you arguing that she should follow whatever custom her BF/part-owner of the house has established, i.e., not shoveling?  ???

Sorry for the confusion.  The OP should be pulling her weight.  She has a responsibility to help with chores, mundane tasks, workload like shoveling, yardwork, maintenance by proxy of living there.   

What I mean about stepping on toes is since she is not an owner, she has no right to be dictating who does or doesn't do what.  It should be between the sister and BF, and I imagine Tom since he and the sister are married and it appears Tom does the outside work.   She still has a responsibility to help and pull her weight.   I don't believe the OP doing tasks interferes with how the tasks are handled.  She should be doing them anyway... as should her BF.  It seems everything falls on the SIL and Tom and that is not right. 

She is not an owner so doesn't have the right to determine how long the grass grows or how deep the snow stays, but she should still help to do the tasks since she lives there.  Just like a landlord may require in the lease that the lawn be mowed, watered and reasonable care.   It seems they feel their right not to shovel or mow the lawn trumps SIL and Tom and lacks compromise.  I don't see why their wants/needs come first, especially since the OP is not an owner.

She is reasonable in not wanting to shovel at 630 AM, but given they aren't cooperative with Tom and SIL about outside tasks (aka different lawn length), I can see why Tom would press the issue. 

Does that make better sense?

sparksals

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #82 on: February 22, 2013, 02:34:22 PM »
Oh absolutely, Sparksals - but that is my point. The extremes are clearly unreasonable, but without seeing the OPs lawn, its not clear (to me at least) where on the spectrum their lawn is. Is it ~3inches when Tom would prefer ~2? Or is it ~8inches and looking like it is never taken care of.  I've lived where mowing two or three times over the course of the summer was often sufficient (during droughts, the grass just didn't grow - and watering was limited by a water ban). Of course some summers it would rain like crazy and you could barely keep up with the mowing.

My current lawn, every 5 days would be ideal. But my hours are just too long to mow most week days, so I push it to weekly. By Friday, the lawn is definitely looking shaggy (but not in a vermin inducing way, in a "hope she's mowing soon" sort of way).

Also, the OP referenced mowing the garden - so it was unclear to me whether she has a grass garden (e.g. tall, grassy wildflowers in a flower bed) or a full lawn that is knee high. The largest issue seems to be she isn't on the same page as her housemates. Whether or not her laid-back gardening is an etiquette issue to her non-housemate neighbors isn't clear to me.

That makes more sense!  Around here about a week is typical for mowing.  DH usually does it on one of the weekend days.  If we have a busy weekend, he may do it on Friday night to get it out of the way. 

I would think it would be an etiquette issue to the housemates.  Lets imagine the situation is reversed and the SIL and Tom posted here about the OP and BF not helping with normal tasks associated with home living/ownership.   I think many of us would be on their side and think BF and the OP were not pulling their weight. 

I think the BF has a greater responsibility to help than the OP does, but she still has an obligation by living there. 

sparksals

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #83 on: February 22, 2013, 02:35:37 PM »
Your boyfriend is being childish and a twit by refusing to shovel at all, ever, but I think you knew that already.

Why does Tom feel the shoveling MUST be done at 6:30am as opposed to 7pm? Because I stand by my assertion that he has a right to insist you guys do half the shoveling, but no right to insist you do your half at 6:30am.

They also have a right to insist that you guys do half of reasonable mowing in the summer - and "reasonable mowing" is a whole lot more than 2 times a summer.

I completely agree that sometimes doing chores you don't care for is part of being an adult and a considerate neighbor. On top of 'neighbor', you all are joint owners. I can't fathom *why* your BF and his sister are joint owners, as they clearly have wildly different ideas of what reasonable property management entails, but for the time being, compromise is necessary - whether you personally enjoy the chores or not.

Just a note, the OP is not married.  Therefore, most likely has no ownership in the property.

Sorry, I wasn't clear - I really just meant that the BF and his sister are joint owners. Even without any marital property issues, it sounds like the BF and the sister should never own anything in common, ever.

That is very true.  This really is a disaster in the making given the vast differences in this topic.  It is a big difference!

Optimoose Prime

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #84 on: February 22, 2013, 03:25:58 PM »
What is sounds like to me is that Tom knows the BF won't be shoveling, so that when the OP moved in, he thought, "Bonanza!  She will help."  Then when it turns out she doesn't want to be at 6:30 is when it got ugly. 

My opinion is if it is that important to Tom to shovel at 6:30, let him have at it.  I would do my part later.

Raintree

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #85 on: February 22, 2013, 04:22:41 PM »
I'm siding firmly with the OP, both on the garden and on the snow in the driveway.

She has not said she won't shovel the driveway. She has said she will not get up in the middle of the night to do it. (And for many of us, shovelling at 6:30 AM would be akin to asking a morning person to go out and shovel at 1 AM). It does sound totally unnecessary, since the snow is never more than ankle-deep. My little Honda Civic could drive in and out of that easily.

Or perhaps they could reach an agreement whereby he shovels the snow, since it's so important to him, and the OP does some other maintenance job, just as power-washing the fence come spring, or raking leaves in fall (or does that have to be done in the pre-dawn hours as well?)

As for the garden, my attitude would be, "You want a nice, well-trimmed garden complete with flower beds and vegetable patch? Go crazy, good for you for being into gardening. It's all yours."  I do think the mowing should be done more often if you are going to have a lawn, and the OP and bf should share in this chore. But the vegetable patch? That seems to be the sister and BIL's project. As long as OP doesn't expect to share in the harvest.

The person who wants a nice garden, should be the one to maintain the nice garden. Personally, I see nothing wrong with the overgrown wildflower look in an urban setting. I know plenty of urban gardeners who have removed their lawns and replaced them with wildflowers and shrubbery that's native to the area. It looks absolutely lovely, and people who walk by stop and admire.

Twik

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #86 on: February 22, 2013, 04:31:22 PM »
It doesn't sound like the OP is "replacing" anything, though. She and her husband are simply not mowing, resulting in an overgrown lawn. There is a difference there.
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WillyNilly

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #87 on: February 22, 2013, 04:38:45 PM »
You say you'd happily shovel later in the day... but how on earth can Tom trust you really will?  You clearly admit to not mowing your lawn (at anytime, early or late) except for 2x a summer, so you have established, by your own doing, a reputation with him of letting things like outside land maintenance go undone.

I love a good meadow filled with wildflowers.  But an overgrown lawn =/= wildflower filled meadow. Meadow grasses and lawn grasses are actually quite different plants - they look different, they grow differently and react and interact with weeds and flowers differently.  If you want a low maintenance front yard, hey more power to you there are a lot of appropriate plants/non-plant ways to have that, but if you simply don't want to maintain a lawn-grass yard, well that's pretty much unacceptable IMO.

Raintree

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #88 on: February 22, 2013, 05:06:19 PM »
It doesn't sound like the OP is "replacing" anything, though. She and her husband are simply not mowing, resulting in an overgrown lawn. There is a difference there.

I agree she and bf should do their part in mowing, if they are to have a lawn. It's a shared lawn. But she also states, "SIL and Tom keep a fussy flower bed and a vegetable garden they want our help with."

Why should she help with a fussy flower bed and ESPECIALLY, why should she help with SIL and Tom's vegetable garden? That isn't her project, it's SIL and Tom's. If SIL and Tom want to have a garden, let them have a garden, but it's theirs to tend to. Just because it's in a common area, it's still SIL and Tom's decision to have one. That's like saying, "I'm interested in rebuilding antique cars. I'm going to park one in our shared driveway, and I expect you to spend every Saturday helping me with it." Or, "I'm interested in raising companion birds as a hobby, and I'm going to build an aviary in our shared yard. I expect you all to go out as often as I do to make sure the birds are fed and also make a weekly run for supplies." SIL and Tom have a choice to NOT do flower beds and vegetables, if they don't want to take on the work involved in tending it.

In short, I say mowing, yes, that's a basic household responsibility; flower beds and vegetable patches: Tom and SIL's hobby/interest/responsibility.

Twik

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Re: Am I rude for not shoveling the driveway?
« Reply #89 on: February 22, 2013, 05:12:58 PM »
No one said they had to do Tom's flower garden. But they should be keeping the lawn on their side mowed.

As for the veggies, if they eat them, they should assist. Otherwise, no need.
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."