10 Cleaning Habits that Can Be Bad for a Marriage


Marriage is a compromise that lasts a lifetime. It’s something you work at every single day and never give up on if you want it to work. It’s something that takes a lot of dedication, a great deal of pride and a great deal of slow, calming breaths. Marriage is frustrating and wonderful and beautiful and sacred; it’s the act of loving and living with someone your entire life while occasionally wanting that person to go far away. It’s the act of loving someone so much you can’t stand it and not wanting to see that person’s face for a while when you’re angry. My husband and I are preparing to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary in May, and there is nothing about him I don’t appreciate, even his cleaning habits. I love everything about him, but his cleaning habits make me crazy. He’s never going to clean the right way, but he’s someone who never complains and never has to be asked to help. I have to put myself in check a lot because he is like a cleaning person who does everything and anything that needs doing without complaining or being asked; but he’s still not as good at it as I. Over the course of the past decade, we’ve had to make a lot of exceptions for one another when it comes to cleaning our house, mostly because I’m an anal retentive neat freak and he’s clean, but not obsessive. And that has led me to share with you the 10 cleaning habits that can ruin a marriage if you’re not careful (thankfully we aren’t at this point, but I could see how it could happen if we’re not careful).

Not Cleaning

When you are a clean person and you marry someone who does not clean, it can be a bit of a shocker. Sometimes, however, people aren’t used to cleaning. Either someone else did it for them or they are raging pigs and you’re going to have to make some new rules. Either way, if one of you is not clean and the other is, it could be a very bad habit for your marriage.

Hiring a Cleaning Service

If you want to hire a cleaning service to do things around the house, but your spouse feels that you can handle it on your own, it can cause friction. Perhaps he is unaware just how much you do and how little time you have, and he sees your desire to hire someone as laziness. And that makes you crazy; talk it out. Trust me, sometimes you just need to calmly explain yourself and make sure both sides of every story are correctly heard and interpreted.

Being Too Clean

And here we go; this is me. I am too clean. Any sort of mess at all makes me feel all crazy and wild and out of control on the inside. I try very hard to contain that, but all I want to do is clean it up and then sit down and breathe a big sigh of relief. It’s a work in progress, but I have to keep my overly-clean feelings to myself or make everyone I live with insane.

Being Unorganized

It’s a deal breaker for many. Being unorganized is a habit many people hate, and I’m one of them. There is no reason to be unorganized, so get organized. But if you are unorganized and you’re married to someone who is organized, it’s probably going to cause issues within your marriage for the simple fact that some people are just crazy about disorganization.

Putting Dirty Dishes in the Dishwasher

I am the neatest person to live on this Earth, yet I don’t clean dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. Don’t correct me if I’m mistaken, but it is called a dish WASHER for a reason, no? Why should I basically wash the dishes before putting them in there? I might as well just wash the dishes. Geez.

Not Sorting Laundry

And here’s my other fault (we all have them, don’t judge). I don’t sort laundry. If it doesn’t have to go to the dry cleaner, it can all be washed together. Whether it is a towel or lingerie, I don’t care. Wash it all together and save time. My husband hates this about me. He truly hates this. It drives him batty.

The Overwhelming Desire for Perfection

Here is me. I have to have perfection. I like everything so clean and pristine that the moment someone walks on the floor I cringe on the inside. A cup set down even on the counter makes me die a little bit on the inside. It’s messy. Why do people have to touch things and make messes?


You can’t criticize unless it is very, very productive. You must be nice about it, and not a nagging witch. There is nothing worse for a spouse than listening to someone complain and nag about the same things all the time. This is not the way to anyone’s heart, and it’s certainly not the way to get them to want to actually get up and help clean.

Cleaning Behind Someone before they are Done

Why do I feel like this article turned into a giant hate fest for all my worst flaws? I do this; I hate this about myself, to be honest. I have the overwhelming need to clean up behind people as they are in the middle of something, like eating. I’m putting food away when people haven’t even made their plate yet. It’s a bad habit. I know.

Cleaning Up After Your Spouse Already Cleans to do it “Right”

At this point, you can practically hear my eyes rolling in my head, right? I am the worst, and I know I’m not the only one. Your husband cleans the bathroom and you’re so proud of him and so happy he just does things like this without being asked, and you’re just thinking about how bad you feel for women married to men who don’t help around the house as you are cleaning up what he just cleaned up because he didn’t clean it ‘right,’ right? Welcome to the deepest, craziest, most insanely strange recesses of my mind. It’s not good for a marriage to do this, so wait until he leaves for work to clean behind him if you just can’t help it.

Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images


Leave a Reply