View Full Version : How many of you ADD women have conflicts w/ur mom over neatness and cleaniness?

06-09-03, 12:22 PM
Being the scatterbrain I am, I am not the most organized person in the world. my room tends to be messy, I tend to make a mess when I cook, and my standards are different from my mom's. This causes her to nag me. For example, she tends to come into my room to look for stuff on the floor.Also, sometimes, I'll be distracted or something, and not have something as clean as she wants it.

06-09-03, 12:30 PM
oh yes..

That was a huge on going conflict growing up.

I haven't lived with my parents in 5 years and it still gets brought up. My mother is always asking me about my house keeping skills

When I go to visit is comes up all the time too.

06-09-03, 06:39 PM
My mom doesn't say anything negitive to me.... My mom is very neat and organized. I know she understands I have trouble in this area. Many times in the past I've asked her to help me do special cleaning projects ( like my and she's right there to help me. She also see I can get the work done with someone around to chat with. Even as a kid my mom seemed to understand I had troubles with stuff and always did little things to help me remember to keep thngs straight....

Geez..... I didn't realize it before how lucky I am !


06-09-03, 08:53 PM
When I was growing up I could keep my room organized. I had to. I would forget where things were is I didn't. But then I had kids. Who rearrange everything. I kinda gave up so now I can't get organized to clean the apartment and when my mother comes over I hear: "What's wrong with you, Kassie? You used to be sooo clean!" She has even called me to "discuss" this. :(

06-10-03, 01:13 AM
While growing up I too was able to keep my room was that possible considering I had undiagnosed ADD? Anyway, my mom "set a good example" for cleanliness...and so I just naturally followed it. Now as an adult I have a LOT of trouble staying neat and tidy. And I HATE it when my landlady comes in my room and REMAKES my bed...or straightens my room....YUCK...I mean I know it's HER house...but let's just say I can't wait to get out of there....and it won't be long now....

06-10-03, 11:12 AM
Thanks to all for sharing!

For the longest time, before I started to take my ADD medication, I sometimes found doing housework to be mentally taxing and hard to focus on. Also, I noticed that if I was in my zone during another activity and must stop to do some chore for my mom, I tend not to do it well. Also, if often takes music to get me going.

As for priorities, housework is not high on my list. For example, if I go days without doing my bed, it's no big deal. So what if my room is messy? I've got other things to do.

Does it seem to you that mothers nag their daughters more than their sons about cleanliness? In my case, my brother was the neater sibling so this wasn't really an issue.

06-10-03, 12:21 PM
BINGO D.Delirious. My brother too was the neater sibling as well. And still is!! But yes, I think moms do nag their daughters more about may be a cultural thing. As if to say women are expected to be neater or cleaner or at least are the ones responsible for keeping a home neat and clean....that used to be the case of course when there were much fewer women working outside the home....But now, are vaccuuming just as much as women...and cooking and ironing and dusting, and um....:)

06-16-03, 08:48 PM
This is an interesting question.

I used to be a neat freak as a kid so that was one thing my mom liked about me.

Now I just don't seem to care as much anymore.

07-12-03, 09:50 PM
OMG, is this an issue for me... I can't even explain. I have been really trying to work on it, and myself.. I too am a scatterbrain. I have gotten so frustrated at times with myself because when I do clean, it's in such a disorganized fashion. I'll do the dishes, vacuum the living room, clean the toilet .. etc.. etc. It's so frustrating. After all that, it seems like you don't see any results. But you don't, because you're going from one thing to another & not staying on task. My mom was very cleanly growing up- and I did have to clean my room- but I struggled with that so much. I didn't do it as much as I probably should have.

Good luck to you!

09-24-03, 03:03 PM
Seems like this is a place i could drop in as well :D

Organization is a rather strange subject with me.

I've been known for having notebooks so orderly that they are worth taking copies from. My friends photocopy them and study from there just because , even when most of the topics are incomplete (bad note-taker), they are incredible neat. I really cannot have it another way... that is one of my obsessions...

if there is one sentence in the wrong print, order or such, i will rip it off or erase (depends) and do it again. i have really nice handwriting (ehem ehem :D ) but it does take me ages.

on the other hand... my room is pretty much a mess... i got a box in my drawer where i dump everything in (but i know what is in there... just be carefull some stuff bite i think). as children we shared rooms my sister would complain on how she had to keep organising stuff.. until i moved out of her room. (heee :D)

my mom cheers and claps if i tell her i fixed my room and desk a little. once i had 15 dirty shirts and tshirts, many many socks and pants and shorts and jeans.. and you get the idea.. and really my room is rather small. dunno in ft. but it is about 10-11 square metres. so yes... it was messy... of course.. my fixing of it is not really all that nice for her.. but it is better. :D

The thing is if i start organising i jump from thing to thing so i never really get finished.


me :)

09-28-03, 11:25 AM
D. Lerious - I'm with you - only in the last year or so I have made any serious attempts to keeping my house clean & organized (it helps my sanity). I can't deal with the stress of never being able to find anything anymore.

As a kid - I was perpetually "losing" things in my room. I remember my mom spending 5-10 min. looking for (and finding) the thing that I lost - pair of socks, shirt, etc.

I was pretty much hopeless. And to "insta-clean", well that's what the closet & under the bed were for! :)

We fought a lot over cleaning - I hated it. It was boring and tedious. And besides, I always had MORE important things to do. Cleaning just wasn't a priority for me. Not when time was an issue.

10-02-03, 07:14 AM
I have always been messy, and I traded my neat freak Mum for a neat freak hubby who gets frustrated coz everything is always a mess. I can't organise myself out of a paper bag. Eventually, hubby gets fed up and goes on a tidying/cleaning rampage and that's how things get done around here. I try hard and I've found the only way I can keep some semblance of order is to not have very much to make a mess with, therefore give/throw lots of things away.

10-16-03, 07:09 PM
All the time...I am NOT the most organized person, and mom has consistently failed to understand this....Yet.....I can find everything I need to find.

11-18-03, 03:19 AM
Danilynnarthur sounds like me. Actually everyone's stories sound like me, heh.

Since I've moved back home (haven't really lived here for 5 years), I still have to remind my mom NOT to move my stuff...because that's how I lose things...because I didn't know where I put it...because Mom moved it.

As for nagging, Mom just reminds me after it's been sitting there for a week and is getting in everyone's way...otherwise, my parents are old enough now to realize that nagging is a waste of energy unless it's something super duper drug addiction or friends w/ really bad influences. :)

11-28-03, 09:54 AM
My mom is a very neat and organized person and she couldn't understand my problems in that area. My room at my parents' place was a mess and she used to complain a lot about that.

Moving to my own students room and later appartment made no difference. I used to grow interesting stuff on my sink. Green, yellow, fluffy stuff. Very nice. Over time my hygienic standards improved, but still my place would be a mess. Books and mail everywhere, dirty dishware on the tables and in the bedroom. Laundry in places where you wouldn't expect it. And my two cats didn't do a thing to help out.

To me Flylady made the big change possible: If it doesn't work for you, just cancel. For me it worked and still does. My mom didn't believe her eyes at first but now she's used to my place being a home.

11-29-03, 03:03 PM
I was thinking some more about this topic - you know, the few times I WOULD be able to really clean my room (which became a pattern & almost a compulsion or something I "need" to do, ) was when I'd get really angry at something, or someone, fight with my family, etc...I would want to go off & clean my room.Sometimes the fight would even BE about "cleaning", but not always. :) I still like to do this now - if I'm upset - I have the motivation, energy, and I need to "DO " something with all the energy, can't just sit around, need an outlet. So, I clean. I have to put my shoes on first though, after an arguement - wierd.

I was also thinking about when I was growing up - I was famous for my "science experiments" growning in my room - empty juice/coffee cups, I still have them now, but not as bad. I try to tidy up more, so when people come over, I'm not embarrased. also, just trying to get in the habit - it's doesn't take more than a minute to walk the cup/mug/bowl/plate, etc. to the kitchen. The problem is that I often will eat at my computer - not the kitchen table. (unless I have company). so I have to make daily "trips" to deposit leftover stuff from my desk.

I think what was worse though, was being embarrased & belittled by my mom on my lack of cleanliness. It wasn't that I wasn't trying, it just wasn't a priority. But I always ended up feeling nagged, and put down by my mom's efforts to get me to clean & keep my room neat & orderly. I can certainly understand a person doesn't want to live in someone else's mess. I really do. But I figured my room was my space & my priorities were always different from hers. I never felt I had enough time. Until I finally got tired of the mess & just HAD to do something about it.

Well, I've spouted enough for now. I need to stop procrastinating & get to work today.

12-17-03, 03:38 PM
I was a mess at a home (10 years since I left) my earlier years in college I went back and forth but mostly had a tendcy to be obsessed with cleaning and would have cleaning fits... I wasn't so much BiPolar II back then.. just some obsessive behavior combined with anziety.. , but that all built up.. things change and now I don't really care much about house cleaning at all... but slowly coming around now that I'm getting treatment.

01-04-04, 01:15 PM
I used to chuckle (to myself of course!) whenever my mother used to ask me "Is it not easier to hang up your clothes than to throw them on the floor?" Let's think about that, Mom. Uh. no! My mom genuinely thought making your bed was the intial building block for the day-forget to do it and your day was sure to go to pot! I still don't make it- personally I think it's obsessive-compulsive in nature! LOL!

01-12-04, 09:11 AM
OK I can help here perhaps: Both of my children have adhd and cleanliness is not top priority for them so here is what we did; We sat down and negotiated (another words they had no standards for cleanliness and mine were too high). What we decided to do was make a list one chore for everyday therefore it did not take long to complete such as Monday--change sheets Tuesday--bring dirty clothes out and so forth would this work for you and your mother?

01-27-04, 11:12 AM
ohh man, my mom cleans like a maniac, and I'm the worst for leaving my clothes on the floor, my dishes on the table, all of that. Before I was on Ritalin (wasn't diagnosed till i was 17), you could hear my mother and I screaming at each other from 3 blocks down, and 90% of the time it was about another mess I left. The fights got really bad though, she and I both blew our tops easily and we actually got physical a few times, to the point where she called the police on me. It was just my anger taking over, I dont' know what got into me. But since I've been on medication, I'm still kind of slobby about my room but when she starts screaming I'll just start on some laundry or something. Or if I'm busy I'll just walk away, I'm actually not that messy, but she has really high standards in neatness. Like she's devastated that I'm hanging up my Manchester United calender because the colors don't go with the rest of the room. I'm 19 and I'm moving out to university this summer.

01-27-04, 11:24 AM
Awwww.....let her have it the way she wants, you won't be there much longer. I know I was devastated when my son told me he was too old (8) for a theme bedroom. *weeping quietly as I pack up Hot Wheels comforter set*:(

02-07-04, 09:07 PM
My mom, love her so, but she was a tyrannical freak about housecleaning when I lived with her. It drove me away. We are fine with each other now, but she would have a screaming and belittle-the-daughter fit on me (and worse sometimes) if I so much as forgot to dust the baseboards or pull the showercurtain shut after I took a shower. I was messy, but she took it too far with the screaming and diciplining. But having two messy, forgetful daughters was a lot of stress, I'm sure.

When she and my dad were married, he was always the mediator who steped in, "You- clean up that mess or else! You- stop screaming at the child, go to your room and calm down!"

My family (before the divorce) found that the housecleaning went smoothly when we all took an hour on one night of the week to clean the whole place TOGETHER, and made strict rules for all to follow to not let the messes happen ( -when we get up from table, take dishes with and put straight into dishwasher, when we go downstairs, take dirty laundry with us, undress next to hamper and deposit dirty clothes into it directly, ect... and try to make them habits over time)

Is there another family member who could step in and give you and your mom an outside view, and help with making a cleaning schedule of some sort and some guidlines for keeping the peace??? Especially with equalizing the standards and expectations? Good luck!

my suggestion:

Rule #1
No yelling. Ever!

02-28-04, 12:56 PM
I can honestly say 'I AM DOMESTICALLY CHALLENGED'. I am married with my own kids and home and my mother STILL nags me about cleaning and organizing.

02-28-04, 06:40 PM
My son is VERY unorganized.
Me on the other hand..... very organized.. people at work tell me I am way too organized.

03-01-04, 01:24 PM
Yep, I had conflicts with my mother about my sloppiness when I was a kid. After a while, she learned to just shut my bedroom door. Made me feel like hopeless case, but there are more important things than neatness.

03-06-04, 10:56 PM
Conflict would be putting it mildly. You know, i do not recall a time when i was growing up that my mom had anything shoved under her couch, i could clean under the couch every day and not keep up.
My mom is good about it but she comes over, and its in her nature to start cleaning. I mean i try really hard, but i am disorganized and never get very far. I mean,....half my house is always messy.I know my mother does not understand it at all, but at least she does not complain about it.
This has gonnen me into trouble in the past too. Others like a teacher, or social worker, or councellor does not understant this is as good as it gets. They are far to often judgmental of myself and my abilities to parent because i am disorganized. Like good organizational skills equals good parenting skills. Like the 2 go hand in hand right. maybe in the 60's and 70's when i was a kid,....everything was linked to good parenting./ but not anymore,.........LOL. Anyways thats my thoughts on it right now.

Flamin Mo
03-07-04, 06:33 PM
Source of many a screaming match between me and my mum. My room always was a mess and to this day, I can't invite anyone over to my apartment as it's such a mess (recently diagnosed, still working out the kinks)

On the other hand there, like some other people above, there are things that i'm obssesivley neat about - like my CD collection, or books on my bookshelf or tools for working on my car. The thing is - it's an all or nothing thing for me. It's either perfectly arranged or it can sit in a pile on the floor!

03-07-04, 09:08 PM
Oh my mom gave up and decided to keep the bedroom door closed. I even had signs all over my door saying do not enter and if they went in there to put up my laundry they got yelled at. She finally decided to start leaving it at the door on the floor for me to put up. But the thing was, when I decided to start cleaning, I cleaned. Other than that, they left me alone. Maybe it had something to do with being an only child and getting my way.

03-12-04, 10:22 AM
My Mom & I used to fight about this all the time :( The term 'domestically challenged' fits me to a T :uhh: When it comes to housework as with anything that has to do with organization, I'm a total scatterbrain :dizzy:

My method of cleaning house was start in the kitchen, remember that I needed to start laundry, go to the bedroom to gather clothes up & see that there was a mess on the floor & then go to get the vaccuum. Then, I'd go into the bathroom to see if there are any clothes in there, I'd wash out the tub or clean the sink... I end up chasing myself all over the house & nothing really gets done :nono:

05-06-04, 10:42 PM
Heh....Mom wants the House spotless she waits till my first day back on Dexadrine and I clean the whole House...Until then...I do what ever I have the energy to do and when I remember..sometimes she reminds me and sometimes she doesn't have to...but she remembers that I am ADHD and she does not make a big deal about it.

05-07-04, 10:19 AM
My mom and I have WARS over this. She's neat as a pin. I think she's just given up though on me being this perfect, clean, spotless person. So she just shuts my bedroom door.

Funny thing is though, within the mess I can find everything I need, whereas if I clean it I can't find anything.

05-07-04, 07:05 PM
LOL It's Not until I clean my room that I lose everything...Wesa still need to have serious talk with our mothers LOL!

05-20-04, 02:01 PM
We never got taught any regular cleaning habits, so my Mom would wait until the bedroom was a hazard and then scream at us to clean it up. Of course, I would just get all distracted and so nothing would get done. Then she charge into the room, broom in hand, sweep everything (clothes, toys, school books) into a pile and threaten that everything that wasn't picked up in 15 minutes she was throwing away. Excellent teaching method. Not. But it is an excellent way to traumatize your kids.

I once had a naturally neat housemate, and thought maybe I could learn something from her, so I watched her. And I noticed that when she was on her way downstairs she would take things with her since she was going that way. This was a novel concept to me. But unfortunately I was never able to implement it.

Just recently I started taking meds and now I know why: I never noticed the things that needed to get picked up and moved. Now, instead of stepping over the same pair of shoes 30 times and not noticing them, something clicks in my brain and I notice the shoes, and register where they're supposed to be - in that split second before I pass them by.

You can't clean up a mess if you can't see the mess.

05-23-04, 02:25 AM
my mom...
she "deserves" a post all of her own in here, and eventually i'll give her one, but for now:
my room always looked like a bomb had gone of in there... same thing with my school locker, and now that i have my own apartment - déja vu!
thankfully i now live about an hour's drive away from my mom, and so she can't come to visit all that often...
when we were in the same city, she used to come to my apartment and just stand in the hallway and go: "oh!" and roll her eyes...

05-24-04, 01:16 AM
I guess I'm very lucky ~ my mom also has ADD (we never knew that's what it was until my son was diagnosed, and as we learned more about it, we realize we have it too). Anyway, she's just as bad at keeping a clean house as I am! I get no judgemental critiques from her!


05-24-04, 11:43 AM
On several occasions growing up, my Mom told me that I'd better have a career that paid well. That was because I'd need to hire a maid to clean my house for me!

I'm now old enough that she's pretty much given up on nagging me about cleaning. I only get the occasional jibe about it.


05-25-04, 10:18 PM
LMAO. Ok, Im 27, and yeah I still live at home, but whatever. My mom STILL comes in my room, to sometimes look for stuff, but then she starts to "tidy" and it drives me crazy. she still thinks I am 17. ITs like ok, cant we be two adults living in the same house instead of mother with daughter.

05-26-04, 06:46 AM
This is definately an area I suck in. No matter how hard I try. I could never figure out how when I knew I spent much more time "cleaning" than others, my home never looked tidy. Then I realize how many jobs I started and perhaps didn't complete. The ironing board, vaccum cleaner, would end up being left out, laundry folded but not put away, dishwasher unloaded , but left open. So now I have to remind myself to put things away when I finished. I too have tried Fly There's an improvemnet here, so I'm hopeful. Looking back on things, I think my dear dad had ADD. His office was once broken in to. The police went through all of the rooms, and when they got to his private office they announced it had been ransacked. Dad had to explain that the room was actually just as he had left it. No matter how picked up my house might be, I always seem to have at least one "ransacked looking" area, or room. I wish it didn't bother me so much. I think the fact I sense my mother's disappointment makes me feel bad. My biggest challenge seems to be the never ending paper clutter. Any suggestions?

05-26-04, 03:45 PM
Originally posted by Zuleika
You can't clean up a mess if you can't see the mess.

So true! When I started taking meds, I almost called the health department on myself!

06-15-04, 11:47 PM
I wish my Mum was understanding about this but I have very big problems. Due to my bad organisation I have just had to move back home (I am 20) after living out of home for the past 2 years. It is driving me crazy coz I am getting the blame for the house being a "pig sty" now that I have moved home. I know, if I took my medication all problems would be solved, but it is just hard! If only there was another solution...

06-17-04, 10:46 AM
There's been some really terrible fights over the years with my mom on that one issue alone, she really does go overboard though. Even the magazines have to go with the decor.:rolleyes:

06-17-04, 06:44 PM
Yikes! And she seems to think you are the one with the big problem?!?

08-14-04, 10:32 PM
When I was in High School I came home and took a nap and Mom and her friend dumped the trash out of my trash can on my bed to see if I would notice. I got up and they were expectant, waiting for my reaction. I didn't even notice!

Mom expected me to be neat and I think I disapointed her.

08-15-04, 02:20 AM
My room is such a mess! My mother just gave up on telling me to clean it. When I do, it is a mess in less than a week, if that! I don't seem to have the organizational skills for this task and most times my closest friend, who is very organized, will help. There have been times when my mom and I fought over my many messes through out the house. I tend to leave my stuff everywhere just cuz I forget to put it away. She does get pretty nasty with what she says but I have learned to block that out...

08-16-04, 10:11 AM
Even though I don't consider myself very disorganized or messy, I used to have problems with my husband because of that. In a painful way, after having disscusions and hearing insults, I learnt to meet my husband's standards. Now, I am grateful to him that he taught me what is expected from a homemaker. Previously I didn't have a clear idea.

08-18-04, 10:00 PM
Heh, my mom is ADD too and is very messy herself. So I never had the conflicts.

But, in a sense, life did suck because we were the scatterbrained family that was always messy and late for everything. I always wondered why our family couldn't be "normal" or why we couldn't get our act together.

05-23-05, 03:32 PM
My mom has severe ADD so you can imagine what our house was like growing up! It caused me much embarassment and stress. My parents did not make me clean my room regularly. I am much cleaner than my mother but my husband now is the one on my case 24/7 about the house. I am a terrible housekeeper and a clutter magnet. I am buried in crap.

I'm hoping if i start meds this will help the situation somewhat.

05-23-05, 05:02 PM
Hi Titanica. It's nice to have you here. My medicine is helping me to keep from making a it up, it helps me stay on task.

I have always needed to have a lot of visual interest in my home and had a tendency to bring insignificant clutter into the house. But now I am able to be more selective and less impulsive. I have been able to purge a lot of things that are no longer important. I don't seem to require as much visual stimulation.


08-22-11, 12:45 AM
you wouldn't think of it when you meet me but I'm actually very keen on cleanliness and sometimes i like nothing better than a clean fresh organised area. Unfortunely the add being what it is doesn't allow me to be as organised and clean as I typically want to be. i will sometimes go for days quite literally not being able to clean cause I just don't have the head for it ie the bad hoping that when I get on meds it'll be easier and much more enjoyable to clean as I so wish to have a spotless house more often..or at least for a full month (fingers crossed).

02-17-12, 05:53 AM
As much as I like my house to be clean, I hate housework. I find it totally soul destroying and the only way I can get through it, is to do it in shifts with something enjoyable inbetween. I actually have a cleaning lady once a week to do a big clean. When I have a lot of work (freelance) nothing gets done from one week to the next except the bare minimum such as dishes and kitchen counters and maybe the loo and bathroom.

My mother on the other hand is obsessed with housework. It's her main occupation. I suspect that she has AS and housework is her special interest. Funny enough she never comments on my house but will always want to help with dishes and tidy up. etc. When we were growing up she also never expected us to do any housework other than make our beds. Hardly washed a dish until I was an adult.:o She's very house proud and I admire her for that but I often wish she would lighten up a bit and make some friends. It seems that her home is her life.