By Chandrama Anderson
E-mail Chandrama Anderson
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in ... (More)
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in Silicon Valley for 15 years before becoming a therapist. My background in high-tech is helpful in understanding local couples' dynamics and the pressures of living here. I am a wife, mom, sister, friend, author, and lifelong advocate for causes I believe in (such as marriage equality). My parents are both deceased. My son graduated culinary school and is heading toward a degree in Sociology. I enjoy reading, hiking, water fitness, movies, 49ers and Stanford football, Giants baseball, and riding a tandem bike with my husband. I love the beach and mountains; nature is my place of restoration. In my work with couples, and in this blog, I combine knowledge from many fields to bring you my best ideas, tips, tools and skills, plus book and movie reviews, and musings to help you be your genuine self, find your own voice, and have a happy and healthy relationship. Don't be surprised to hear about brain research and business skills, self-soothing techniques from all walks of life, suggestions and experiments, and anything that lights my passion for couples. (Author and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Calif. Lic # MFC 45204.) (Hide)
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Marriage Interview 6: Blind to Clutter
Uploaded: Apr 28, 2015
Mandy and Sam met in college in 1988 and began dating a year later. They waited 15 years before getting married, and now have been married for 13 years.
One of their biggest problems is that Sam is "clutter-blind." I know a lot of you have the same issue in your relationship because I hear about this often in my couple's practice. One person wants the house cleaner than the other. The desire of each person can range from perfectly spic-and-span to messy and cluttered.
Rather than dig deeply into the potential psychological issues of not noticing clutter, Sam and Mandy went the practical route: they hired a maid/cleaning lady to organize in addition to clean.
At times in couples therapy we need to look for the important nature/nurture components in the ways couples interact. Other times we need to hire a maid!
It is possible that they each grew up in a family where the amount of picked-up vs. cluttered was quite different. It's also possible that the expectations of females and males were different in relation to cleaning up.
My husband's mom was a feminist, so all the boys learned housekeeping. But the truth is that after our housekeeper starting coming, I said with enthusiasm, "Our house looks so much better, doesn't it?" He admitted he didn't really notice, but was glad it was better for me, and he would not feel so guilty about not doing more housework than he was! And that's good enough for me.
It is optimal, though, to remember that what is important to your beloved be important to you as well. And there are many solutions to a given problem. Be creative!
Mandy's tip for other couples is:
Always find the time to get away and reconnect with each other no matter how busy you are.
What is it worth to you?
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