Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

House chores vs sz

I was raised very traditionally, and feel comfortable being in control of the household. Laundry, dishes, cleaning, trash and yardwork. However, since my fiance hasn’t been able to keep a job he won’t let me do anything. When I clean he says to do it later because it’s stressing him out. Or if I start to organize the basement he says not to because he is going to do it. BUT HE NEVER DOES! I tried to start to take the leaves on our quarter acre back in October, he freaked out saying he would do it and to leave it alone. Here we are mid December and our backyard looks like a forest floor. It’s the same reason our lawn hasn’t been mowed since July. I just want to be able to take care of my house. But instead it’s starting to fall apart and I take pride in taking care of the things you own. What should I do here?

Making some compromise to help the people we care about is the utmost display of affection.
But making compromises that are harmful, or which disrupt quality of life without long term benefit is counter productive.

It seems like what has happened in your home is that the commotion and activity of general maintenance became upsetting to your fiance. Problem is, now there is a 2 month backlog of work to be done. That means days (rather than minutes) of work piled up for you; and likewise, days of upsetting activity for your fiance to endure.
What once may have been a matter of his ability to avoid or endure minutes of noise and motion has become a real problem.

It might just be that you’ll each have to do your part to put things back in order. For him, that might mean going for a long walk, or wearing headphones (or ideally, helping) while you shoulder the work.

It’s fair to have a conversation about the topic, and fair to point out that he simply needs to step aside and let the work be done a little at a time.
It’s not ideal for him, but it isn’t ideal for you, either.

Not that I am any kind of voice of reason or authority.
But I think that’s how I would try to approach the situation.


Thank you for your advice. As I am still new to learning how to approach him with his new diagnosis. Usually when I bring it up it leads to him yelling and name calling. Eventually, he starts to throw and break things, when he finally settled he says that everything is my fault. If I had just stopped when he asked me to I never would have pushed him to that point and things wouldn’t keep getting broken. So I’ve learned to just not talk about things with him.

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Since discussions lead to conflict, maybe you need to communicate a different way.

I like lists, so I’d be inclined to make a list of jobs that need to be done . . . then I’d put a date next to each item. Post it on the fridge. Let your fiance know (casually, not in a confrontational way) that if he hasn’t had a chance to do the job by the date shown, you will be doing/starting it that day.

He’ll have advance notice of what you’re going to do, and he can make plans to be away (or use one of @wreklus’s suggestions) if watching you do these things bothers him.


I like the list and date idea. Or you could hire someone to do a lot of the work while you two go to a movie or park or a road trip or something. That way you could start over clean with a blank slate. Having a schedule or routine might help also. Say lawn mowing on a certain day of the week etc. I notice that my wife takes it personally if I mention things that need to be done, so I usually try to do as much as possible myself, but I have made a schedule for how often the bedding needs to be changed or how often the house needs to be vacuumed, or I will do it myself. Otherwise, things like that get put off for a month or more. She doesn’t seem to have a good sense of time. My wife hasn’t worked for 17 years and hasn’t driven for almost 6 years, and our daughter has been living with my wife’s sister and brother-in-law for over 2 years, so it is not like my wife doesn’t have a lot of time on her hands. I also sometimes check the expiration dates on stuff in the fridge while she is in the shower. The last time that I checked there was an empty bottle of salad dressing that was expired 6 months ago.