Sunday, April 27, 2008

How To Get Rid Of Your Adult Child's Clutter

Last year I wrote:
I still have several boxes to unpack from my move to Arlington and am not sure what's in several of the boxes. I also still have a bunch of boxes full of mystery items in my parent's basement.
Whatever you do, don't tell my mom and dad about this idea:

The best case scenario for handling your adult child’s clutter in your home is to have her come in and clear the clutter herself. You should set a specific date and time for this project that takes you and your adult child’s schedules into consideration. Packing up the stuff and tossing it without any input from your daughter will likely create animosity, so it really is a good idea to have her be a part of the process.

If your child now lives half-way across the country and can’t clear the clutter himself or on a convenient schedule, I suggest a virtual clutter clearing. To take on this project, you’ll need a digital camera, a computer, a Flickr account, and some boxes. Photograph all of your child’s items as you place them into boxes. Then, upload all of the images to a Flickr account and send your child the URL. Your child can go through the pictures online and decide the fate of the stuff. I suggest that there only be two options for the stuff: “Send to me” and “Don’t send to me.” Let your child know that you will make the decision to donate, sell, or trash the things in the “don’t send to me” pile. I think that you’ll be surprised how few things your child chooses to have sent his way now that he has photographic images of all of the things he left. And, over the course of a few days, you’ll finally be free of the clutter.

Wait a minute, I forgot... they read my blog!

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