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Washing dishes at 3am

J

JaneDonald

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I am concerned for my mother. She comes from a medical family where they are all hypocondriacs, particularly her father, and she is obsessed with a cleaning. When she goes a few days without cleaning, she cries and is upset and says she is a failure. I have spent many years trying to help her get past this, and today we were all up late watching movies and she walks to the kitchen and starts washing dishes at 3:30 am. I was visibly upset and told her to stop, bc this isn't normal, and she said "I'm not washing dishes, just a few pans." She then told me I needed help and therapy bc it wasn't normal that I was upset with her. She is obsessed with having a clean house every night and nothing can deter her from washing dishes and cleaning. Am I crazy? Is this normal behavior?
 
M

Mister_Fabulous formerly BetaMale

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If she likes (this is the key word) cleaning the house, why do you want to stop her? Maybe she's a clean freak, and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.
 
Keesha

Keesha

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If she’s up at 3:30 a.m. washes pots & pans then they are probably dishes that should have been cleaned earlier but weren’t. There are much worse things to be obsessed about and if it bothers you so much then maybe you could help her. I’ve got ocd also and wish I WAS obsessed with cleaning.
With this virus going around, extra cleanliness isn’t such a bad idea. I wouldn’t worry about it too much. It seems like a harmless obsession to have.
 
daffy

daffy

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I think you may be over reacting a bit. I can fully understand that the thought of coming down to dirty pans in the morning and its not a nice thing as the food will have dried on and would want them out of the way.
As your still living at home i guess your at the younger end of the age spectrum where a few dirty pans doesnt bother you. My kids were like that but now theyve got there own homes its a different matter
 
J

JaneDonald

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I mainly get upset because I feel bad for her cleaning all the time. I offer to help and try to do the cleaning constantly, but she doesn't trust anyone else to do it like she does and she uses cleaning to procrastinate doing her real work but she cannot admit it. I always tell her I will do the dishes but she won't let me
 
Keesha

Keesha

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So you’ve done all you can. I think one of the worst things you can do with someone with OCD is try and change them. My father, aged 91, has this pretty bad. He has his favourite cups and trays that he loves and whenever they break he will spend hours gluing them back together. They are ugly as ever, unhygienic and can’t be cleaned in the dishwasher so basically don’t get cleaned properly. He’s also SUPER frugal even though they are loaded. I could bring in a dozen replacement cups but he doesn’t want any of them. Its THEIR obsession and no amount of reasoning will change this. It will drive YOU nuts before it does her.
Frankly I’d try and find a healthier way to view this for your own sanity than try and change her because now HER obsession is becoming YOURS.
 
R

Rosedoll

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I guess it only becomes a problem when the cleaning gets in the way of your life ..like thinking about it, it causing anxiety/distress ect
 
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