General Question

ManicPixieDreamGirl's avatar

Is it appropriate for a guest to clean my bathroom?

Asked by ManicPixieDreamGirl (124points) 1 month ago

My husband’s son brings his young daughters to visit our house once a week or so. He begins every visit by taking out his Clorox wipes and cleaning my bathroom. He wipes down the toilet, the counter and the sink. He does this quite openly and even leaves the pack of wipes on the counter when he is finished. I am not the best organized person in the world, but I do clean the bathroom very well on the regular. I find it incredibly insulting that my bathroom isn’t clean enough for him and his children and do not believe it is appropriate for him to do this. My husband says it’s ok because he has little girls who use that bathroom. Am I wrong to be offended?

Side Note: I have visited his home and it was quite a mess, with food, trash, and toys strewn throughout.

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31 Answers

SergeantQueen's avatar

Could it be he is just a neat freak? When you went over to his house did you notice his bathroom being super clean? Maybe his house is so dirty because he has a child (and depending on their age they could be messy) and he just really needs a clean spot every once in a while.
I would be offended too so I don’t think you are in the wrong. Maybe try to clean it right before he comes and use the same wipes and leave them on the counter so he knows it’s been done. If he still does it, it could be an OCD thing

ManicPixieDreamGirl's avatar

I’ve shared a house with him and this kid is not a neat freak. His bathroom – his entire house – is much more messy and dirty than mine.

SergeantQueen's avatar

^^I added stuff to my previous question in an edit. I doubt it’s meant to be insulting then. Maybe he just really wants a clean house but it’s too hard with kids

SergeantQueen's avatar

Normally though it isn’t appropriate unless they are living there or made a mess

canidmajor's avatar

No, it’s just flat out rude.

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
chyna's avatar

One less room you have to clean.

ManicPixieDreamGirl's avatar

@chyna I told my husband to ask him to include the mirror and the floor next time.

CWOTUS's avatar

Whether it is “appropriate” or not is a fine point, and I’d agree with you that it’s “probably not”. But so what? The next question to ask yourself is this: “Is it worth getting into a row about?”

And the answer to that – at least for me – is a resounding “Hell, no!”

It may be a result of a promise that he made to the girls’ mother, after all, even though there’s no need to drag other people into this, to beat the truth out of him, or whatever. So he’s cleaning your bathroom even more than you already do quite well, and better than he keeps his own house. So what?

KNOWITALL's avatar

I’m intrigued tbh. I would ask why he does that. Does one of the girls have an immune disorder? Is it his own OCD manifesting? I would have to have a conversation like “I hate that you feel the need to do that here, can I help before you come to make you more comfortable or safe while visiting?”

There is no way on earth I wouldn’t ask though.

Kardamom's avatar

I’m guessing that he or the kids have gotten sick, the flu is epidemic where I live, and he doesn’t want to take a chance.

Maybe they got sick immediately after staying at your home, and they just associate the illness with the last place they were before they got sick, in a psychological manner.

Maybe they saw somebody come out of that bathroom without having heard the sink being turned on (I’ve had this experience multiple times in multiple places) indicating that someone hasn’t washed their hands after using the restroom.

I think he’s just not taking any chances with him or his kids getting sick, maybe coupled with a bit of OCD.

I will also go out on a limb and suggest that there are people who think they have a clean home, when they don’t. Sometimes I’m shocked by what people consider to be “clean enough” but I have people at my house with weakened immune systems, so I have to be very careful.

This is one of those things not worth getting into a snit about. Just chalk it up to being one of those situations where Bob does things differently than we do, and let it go.

Zaku's avatar

Personally, I would not feel insulted, and would let him do any extra cleaning he wants to. I would think that it would almost certainly not be a way someone would think to insult me on purpose, and it’s not in my personal code of honor that I clean my bathrooms better than someone who wipes everything with disinfecting wipes. And, I wouldn’t mind someone else doing extra cleaning – I like your idea to ask him to do the mirror and floor too (as long as it’s not done in a passive-aggressive way carrying the message of your hurt feelings at the perceived insult.)

My guess (not knowing any of the people involved) would be that his wife (and/or possibly most assertive daughter(s)) are putting him up to it, or as others have suggested, he has a compulsion or other issue about hyper-cleanliness and/or germs. My personal reaction would be to feel sympathy for people living with that mindset, and to be happy I don’t have it, and again, not to take it as a personal slight.

ManicPixieDreamGirl's avatar

As to the idea of his having OCD, I feel like that would fit better if his OCD didn’t come and go based on whether he is in his own house (which as I mentioned is not just messy but is dirty) or mine.

RocketGuy's avatar

We know a family whose kids get sick all the time, so they are really paranoid about germs. They bleach everything. We wonder if the lack of germs in their house prevents their immune systems from getting any challenges.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I think you’re looking at this the wrong way. What makes you think you are being singled out? Odds are that NO bathroom will ever be clean enough. Rather than an insult to you, look on it as some sort of compulsive disorder ala Monk. I wish I knew someone with a compulsion to clean MY bathrooms!

canidmajor's avatar

And it could be as simple as the idea that the son never liked the idea of you marrying his father, and has chosen a way to insult you by suggesting that your environment is dirty.
Even if that’s not his purpose, it is still rude to clean up so overtly. If he was only worried about clean
Ones, he could do this without making it so obvious.

janbb's avatar

It sounds like some kind of neurosis. I have relatives who are somewhat similar. For the sake of the relationship, I button my lips but if it is really bothering you, talk to him and ask him why.

And yes, it is rude.

funkdaddy's avatar

There’s no way to tell whether he means it to be rude. I’d guess because he’s not hiding it, he probably doesn’t think of it that way. It’s probably a safe bet just to ask what’s up. I’d bet it’s for his daughter’s benefit and not his own.

I’m a dad to a young daughter. Trying to teach her to wipe properly and clean herself has been, let’s say “interesting”, at times. I’m sure her little rituals and some of the conversations we’ve had strike some folks as odd, and maybe even rude. From my perspective, I’m just trying to get a job done that I don’t particularly enjoy or relish.

I’ve never carried clorox wipes, but I have cleaned up more than one bathroom both before and after she pees. If that’s what it takes to get her to sit down, finish her business, wipe properly and feel comfortable, I’m on board.

It beats more urinary tract infections and accidents any day.

An example: My daughter was scared of self flushing toilets for some time and just wouldn’t use them. So if we were out somewhere with toilets that had sensors, I had to be in the stall, blocking the sensor and letting her exit completely before letting it flush. I’m sure it struck some people as odd, and maybe rude to have a 4-year-old girl in the men’s room, but I was just getting it done and trying to find the best route. The alternative is an accident in the middle of Target or a screaming 4 year-old.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I clean the toilet seat wherever I go, before I use it. Be it restaurants or someone’s house.

Unofficial_Member's avatar

Offended? For a free bathroom cleaning service? You must be joking. He does good thing for you and his action does not affect anybody’s wellbeing. You can stop caring about cleaning your bathroom when he is staying with you and use that time to enjoy your life. Believe me, not everybody finds that cleaning bathroom as pleasant activity, it’s just… gross.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I wouldn’t mind a bit of someone cleaned my bathroom or any other part of the house! But I can understand how some could be offended. But look…it’s obviously not you. He’d do that silly anti-germ ritual even if the bathroom was sparkling.

Dutchess_III's avatar

For some reason I really want to see a picture of your bathroom…..

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I would be offended if they used a nasty smelling air freshener. Other than that I am ok
Clean away.

Kardamom's avatar

@rocketguy, I know those people. The kids and the parents are sick all the time. The mom bleaches the whole house and all of the toys on a regular basis. The kids rarely play outside, but they are bathed every single day. They’re 3 and 7. When me and my brother were that age, we probably took a bath every 2 or 3 days, but we washed our hands every time we used the restroom. We played with lots if dirt, and dogs, and other kids. We were pretty healthy.

Dutchess_III's avatar

That obsession with clean is the reason they’re sick all the time.

RocketGuy's avatar

Yep, we have had one dog or another for the last many years. Brought dirt and germs into our house. Our kids don’t get sick very often – funny coincidence. We only use bleach when we see mold, otherwise it’s just plain soap and water.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yep. I’m pretty sure mom bathed us every day because we were rolling around in the mud and dirt, getting scratched knees and stepping on stuff because we were always barefooted!

johnpowell's avatar

I went to my sisters house on Monday and we got pizza for dinner. I was working on the computer I gave them for Christmas while everyone started eating. So about 8 people around the table eating when I was ready for some slices. So I grab a plate out of the cupboard and go to the sink and start washing it.

My mom gave me a look like I had just killed a dog. My sister was all “he washes his own dishes before using them even if he was the one to wash them.”

Which is true. I will give all the dishes I plan to use a once over before actually using them. Even if I was the one to wash them. Dust happens….

I would say my OCD is way more offense than your step-sons.

si3tech's avatar

@ManicPixieDreamGirl I would chalk it up to him being a germophobe or neatnik. If he’s otherwise a good guest i think i’d ignore it.

JennWithOneN's avatar

Considering you said his house and bathroom are messier than yours, I think it could be considered an OCD thing because his obsessions might include him thinking that he can’t use any other bathroom other than his own without wiping it down himself (it’s a weird thought but it’s kind of common for those who have problems with obsessive cleaning)

kruger_d's avatar

No, not appropriate. But love comes with quirks, and as quirks go, this is pretty harmless. It would likely cause him a lot of anxiety to change, so make peace with it.

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