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Having a clear out

JMU

Registered User
Feb 17, 2012
155
0
Cornwall
So, after some consideration and prompted by the advice at the training session I went to last week I decided to have a clear out. Not that our house is full of clutter, but both dad and I have amassed collections of various things over the years- books, toys, and in my case tins (don't ask). We had a sort of overflow shelf in the front room, which was more of a dust-gatherer, and I decided, seeing as a certain proportion of our books were now only being kept for my own sentimental reasons (dad is never going to read them again, and as for remembering the givers or occasions on which we got them he has no clue), so I had a good sort out. Dad loved this- he wanted me to chuck everything in, and between us we managed to take down the shelf. That was all good until it came to repainting when dad took on a strange mood and refused to do anything for a whole day.
Anyway, I feel better for it, and want to continue the theme amongst my own possessions (I just wish I was an e-bay expert-that would be very handy). The problem is I am having to be surreptitious about the whole matter as now dad wants to get rid of everything! (Oh, I don't like that painting. We don't read those books. It's only rubbish in those cupboards!). No dad, that's mine (or at least it is now :)).
There is a little part of me feeling guilty, like I'm wiping out his past, but then it's already gone (all of his adult life anyway), and I haven't got rid of his few remaining children's books (ever heard of Prize Budget For Boys?). I've just got to figure out how to tackle the rest without him now.
 

Onlyme

Registered User
Apr 5, 2010
4,992
0
UK
Hi

Its great that you are turning things out but you will have to watch your Dad now. Make sure there aren't any charity collection bags around or his whole wardrode will gradualy disappear. Check the bins before bin night as well. Once they get on a throwing out phase anything can go and you will find its probably your stuff that goes as he doesn't recognise it.

Remove important paperwork and lock it up! Do the same with photos and anything of real value. We lost loads of things that were never seen again and can't be replaced.

Perhaps your Dad didn't remember how to paint and it made him confused?
 

rajahh

Registered User
Aug 29, 2008
2,791
0
Hertfordshire
I sometimes get the feeling of " parting with him" when I put things out my husband will never use again, or indeed recognise again. Even clothes which no longer fit him as he is losing weight, and will not regain it.

I can well understand your emotions regarding this.

I often take something out then put it back !!!!

Jeannette
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
75,858
0
Kent
I hope this doesn`t sound callous.

All Dhiren`s wearable clothes went with him to the care home.
His suits, shoes and surplus outdoor clothes went to a charity shop.
The pictures he liked are on the walls of his room.
His books are sorted, some have been kept, some given away, the rest gone to the charity shops.

I have kept a wallet , because at one time he was always `losing` it and we had at least one daily search, and his seaman`s papers.

I just thought while I still have him, I will get rid of his `things`.
 

Teanosugar

Registered User
Apr 28, 2012
107
0
Stockport
This is like deja vu lol

Hi

Its great that you are turning things out but you will have to watch your Dad now. Make sure there aren't any charity collection bags around or his whole wardrode will gradualy disappear. Check the bins before bin night as well. Once they get on a throwing out phase anything can go and you will find its probably your stuff that goes as he doesn't recognise it.

Remove important paperwork and lock it up! Do the same with photos and anything of real value. We lost loads of things that were never seen again and can't be replaced.

Perhaps your Dad didn't remember how to paint and it made him confused?

Reading this, it is like deja vu, my dad keeps giving things away, things disappear, his whole wardrobe ends up in suit cases, and he didnt do it is his reply lol. Had to take all important paperwork and photographs to my own home (dad did live in sheltered housing but now on assessment in EMI unit), as he was tearing things up, drawing on photographs etc. Even in the EMI unit he has packed bags and things are going missing, seems like he gave a carer one shoe, saying one was no good to him, yet the other was in the wardrobe all the time lol. I have removed all bags, carrier bags, named everything he needs to remind him it belongs to him, only left him with small amount of money as that seems to get lost too, and left a decent amount in safe at home. Good luck cos I know this seems to be a theme with dementia.
 

jude50

Registered User
Dec 28, 2011
2,446
0
Cardiff
I too had a bit of a clear out today. Mum died in July and it was only this week that we took all 15 bags of clothes to a charity shop. Today I;ve been up to the bedroom and dusted and polished the wardrobe suite Mum and Dad bought when they got married in the early 1950s. It's a nice 3 piece vintage set that's solid but it's now been emptied of all the old hangers, shoes and empty shoe boxes and other rubbish and I have three bags for the bin. I don't feel sad I feel like it's a moving forward and the bonus was I found a bag of christmas cards and bags but in there was the lists Mum had done since the year dot for christmans presents so my first one in 1961 was a dalmation, a foam covered bendy toy I think it was, my sisters the next year was a rattle but she was only 3 weeks old. So that i'm keeping. The important bit of Mum, her love I still carry with me always

Jude
 

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
17,454
0
68
Toronto, Canada
I moved my mother to Ontario from British Columbia. I had 2 pallets of boxes shipped. Four days after I brought my mother to my home, she was sectioned. My sister and I went through all of my mother's clothing, knick knacks, some furniture, dishes, everything I had had to pack on my mother's insistence. It took us a couple of months to do, as my sister would drive down from Montréal, a 6 hour drive one way. We did feel guilty about it but we had to do it.

I'm now trying to triage all my junk. I have about 4,000 books but I'm gradually getting rid of some. Then there's our basement - the Canadian equivalent of the UK loft. Mine is the stuff of nightmares - junk stacked up right and left. What I really need is a non-stop month or two to tackle it. Maybe when I retire?
 

jaymor

Volunteer Moderator
Jul 14, 2006
14,850
0
England
The important bit of Mum, her love I still carry with me always

Jude

This is how I feel. My husband is in a nursing home, he has two weeks supply of clothing there, I have a supply of replacements in his wardrobe and all his other, 'there is plenty of wear left in that, don't throw it away' have gone to the charity shop or been binned if well past being passed on. He is still here with us which is what matters. I am also now I am on my own aware of the fact someone will have to clear out after me and I don't want to be remembered as the old bag lady who threw nothing away. I am slowly going through the house too clearing unused and lets be honest unwanted 'things'. It makes me feel really good when one more cupboard is presentable.

Jay
 

ellejay

Registered User
Jan 28, 2011
4,019
0
Essex
What I really need is a non-stop month or two to tackle it. Maybe when I retire?

Or you could borrow my No 1 son, While OH & I were on holiday (many years ago, when son still lived at home) he tackled Shed, loft & garage!

I thought it was great :) ............Don't think OH has recovered yet :p

Lin x
 

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
17,454
0
68
Toronto, Canada
Or you could borrow my No 1 son, While OH & I were on holiday (many years ago, when son still lived at home) he tackled Shed, loft & garage!

I thought it was great :) ............Don't think OH has recovered yet :p

Oh good, I'll throw in the garage too! Lucky woman. Don't think my OH would recover either - he's a bit of a packrat. He does throw stuff out but needs to do it all himself in case I throw out something 'valuable'. :rolleyes:
 

LindaPP

Registered User
Sep 28, 2012
18
0
Gloucestershire
Think yourself lucky!!!!

My MIL will not part with anything.

This has three consequences. The first is that often she cannot find things she wants and I struggle to help her - imagine trying to find just the scarf she wants out of about 40 kept in various 'scarf places' about the house.

As the person doing most of the housework I have to move masses of stuff every week as I attempt to keep the place clean and dusted.

There is no room left in any of the many wardrobes so she wears the same things day in and day out - including things with holes or stains.

I wish she would allow someone to help her de-clutter
 

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
17,454
0
68
Toronto, Canada
Linda, would it not be possible for you to stealthily remove just a few items at a time, starting with say, clothes she hasn't worn in years? I realize it would take forever to get things done but at least it's something.

Is it possible to get someone to take your MIL out for a coffee, a drive, anything for an hour or so, giving you the opportunity to shift more at a time? I know it sounds rather devious but something we haven't any options.
 

JMU

Registered User
Feb 17, 2012
155
0
Cornwall
I know about the things disappearing. A month ago I had to replace both of my dad's pairs of glasses as (as far as I can gather) he had given all of his pairs away- even though he wears a pair full time.
As for paperwork, there dad is the opposite. He hoards it, and hides it. I find it frequently tucked under his pillow. I have removed all the important stuff I can find so what now turns up is old receipts and letters from (now deceased) relatives. These get confusing because he tells me he has to write back to them.
Also things vanish for periods and then mysteriously reappear. His dressing gown went on holiday for a couple of months but then he came downstairs one morning wearing it again. Then again his (spare) walking stick, missing for a fortnight, turned up hooked on the pole in the wardrobe a few days ago.
I do worry about my stuff. We did go through a phase where he forgot I lived here and I would find my (wet) washing removed from the clothes horse and dumped on top of cupboards, and evidence of him having been in my room- open drawers and such. He also pulls items of my clothing out of the wardrobe we share, which it takes me some effort to convince him to put back. But at least he now accepts that some of the things in this house are mine.
My next mission is to discover why he now appears to have only two pairs of trousers!
 

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