My Wife Is Too Attached To Her Stuff

My wife, who has ADHD, keeps everything she deems to have "sentimental value" — which ends up being a lot of stuff! I know she's attached to it, but it's smothering me. How can I help her weed out the junk?
The Experts | posted by Susan Pinsky

Some people are “past-oriented”; every possession is associated with a memory or a person. Others are “future-oriented” — items will “come in handy someday,” “go to the grandchildren,” or “look great in the next house.” Holding on to a bit of the past and planning a bit for the future are fine, as long as they don’t clutter the present.

For keepsakes, I recommend a memorabilia box no larger than a small microwave oven. The size of the box creates a visual boundary that forces you to consider size as a factor when deciding which items to keep for sentimental reasons. So keep Mom’s brooch, but donate her sleeper sofa. For larger items, find creative ways to make a handful of them useful. For instance, an old gymnastics trophy can be used as a doorstop. Or newer items can be swapped out for an heirloom. So get rid of your dining table and replace it with Grandma’s, but only if her table is more attractive and functional. Boundaries and creativity will allow your wife to respect the past while living in the present.


22 Clutter-Busting Strategies for Adults with ADHD
Clutter doesn’t have to take over your life! Take care of your clutter today — the ADHD way. Download now!

Get This Free Download

Copyright © 1998 - 2016 New Hope Media LLC. All rights reserved. Your use of this site is governed by our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.
ADDitude does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The material on this web site is provided for educational purposes only. See additional information.
New Hope Media, 108 West 39th Street, Suite 805, New York, NY 10018