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Old 03-18-2019, 12:08 PM #1
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Default venting: overbearing landlord

Hello,

I wasn't sure where to post this, and I just need to vent.

I've been doing better than I've had in a while. I've been dealing with some relationship and mental health stuff for months that is FINALLY getting resolved. But all of those things have made it hard to keep up with things around the house.

I'm currently in housing provided by my job. I'm super grateful and can't complain about the house itself; it's beautiful and has all the necessities and more!

However, the person in charge of housing can be a little... critical and nit-picky. One day she sent a really harsh text saying I was being inconsiderate because I had left food out the night before, something I never do but, of course, forgot the one day she decides to visit the house. I also moved across states and brought all my stuff with me, so I've been struggling keeping everything in my room (it's a shared house, although in the winter months it's just me). I have art supplies in one of the common spaces since I, as part of my improved mental health, have gotten back into drawing and painting.

Anyways, it seems like every time I see her she's reminding me to make room for the other tenants when they arrive, clean the house, wipe the counters, take out the garbage... stuff I'm already doing, although some tasks are hard to keep up with since maintenance comes every week and tracks in mud and dirt from outside. My suspicion is that she thinks I normally am messy and untidy, as she saw the couple of times she's come in and of course, it's messy.

In the past few weeks especially I have been doing, at least in my opinion, my best job of cleaning the house. I make sure the kitchen is clean before going to bed, I made a chore list to check off every week, and finally put all my plants in nice pots. I feel so proud of myself for getting into better cleaning practices and creating a pleasant environment for myself to live in.

I respect my landlord communicating her standards of cleanliness to me. However, it's damaging to my self esteem when she's constantly reminding me to do basic stuff in a condescending tone. How do I gracefully accept her comments, because right now an email she sent this morning is making me feel like crap and distracting me from work. I hope it doesn't sound like I'm trying to make excuses, I just need to not get so hung up on what she says.
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Old 03-18-2019, 12:52 PM #2
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

I should send you some photos of my apartment. Its pretty bad.

Do you think you could get her to email me? I could use "reminders".

I totally understand how it would feel like she is probing a sore spot. But right now, i would feel like it meant somebody cares about me. Because sitting in my messy apartment, it just proves that nobody cares about me, including myself. That probably seems extreme? But i think there is some truth in it. I wish us both the best. Every week i hope this will be the week i clean up.
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Old 03-18-2019, 01:31 PM #3
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

I'm so sorry you're hurting so much, aimlesshiker I understand what you mean. Perhaps you could try to send her some pictures of your house when it's clean since she seems to believe the opposite. Perhaps you could just be honest with her and tell her that these comments hare hurting you and that you're doing your best to keep your apartment clean and that she can see for herslelf. Hopefully she'll listen to what you have to say and understand you. I'm so sorry you're feeling so hurt. Just try not to take it too personally. You're doing your best and that's what matters. You already know the truth in your heart, don't let those comments bring you down too much. I'm sure you're a strong, wonderful person. Keep trying your best regardless of what others say, although I understand it's not easy to ignore other people's comments, especially if it's your landlord. Keep doing your best! That's all you can do after all. I'm so sorry you're going through all of this. Please don't give up. Remember that we're here for you if you need it. Feel free to PM me anytime. Let me know if I can do something to help you. Wish you good luck! Let us know how it goes. I'm so sorry you have to deal with all of this, aimlesshiker. Please don't give up. You're a strong, wonderful person. We all believe in you. We're all rooting for you
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Old 03-18-2019, 02:21 PM #4
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

Some people are mean and rude. My neighbour is like that - he, in a seemingly friendly way, consulted me on a new fence and deliberately put in the opposite - makes my garden look like a prison. Luckily unbeknown to him I've already arranged to move out.

Another woman (sounds like your person) rang me today ordering me to change existing arrangements that I've had in place for a month with someone else because that's the "only time" convenient for her.

I haven't found communicating with this sort of person to be successful myself. They just are on a different mental trip completely.

I'm glad you have a nice house and that you are doing good stuff for yourself like painting!! That's the important thing i.m.o.

Good luck!
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Old 03-19-2019, 03:46 AM #5
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

You say twice she came over and things were messy. What about all the other times? It seems to me that she's a micromanager. And she likes reminding you to do things even when they are done does that sound right to you? If that is the case it might be worth saying to her when she says those things to you and they are done to hear what she says and the. Follow it with well yes, good thing they are done now . Acknowledge what she says while at the same time giving yourself credit for having it done. Does that make sense ?
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Old 03-19-2019, 08:19 AM #6
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

Quote:
Originally Posted by aimlesshiker View Post
I respect my landlord communicating her standards of cleanliness to me. However, it's damaging to my self esteem when she's constantly reminding me to do basic stuff in a condescending tone. How do I gracefully accept her comments, because right now an email she sent this morning is making me feel like crap and distracting me from work. I hope it doesn't sound like I'm trying to make excuses, I just need to not get so hung up on what she says.

It's only damaging to one's self esteem when you hold the critical person in high enough regard that their opinions and criticisms hold weight. In your case, the way you describe it there are two ways to look at it, first off, you take her criticisms to heart because you worry about their incorrect opinions of your caring for the house or two, you realize that you know how well you take care of it, you know that this manager is a critical and controlling landlord. One choice makes it continue to defeat you and feel bad, the other asserts yourself and despite opinions of others helps you to retain your confidence in your abilities and behaviors.


Assert yourself to the landlord respectfully and graciously accept her input but give your own and make it clear that you won't be beaten down by someone being overbearing and critical. You can either respectfully accept by saying "ok thanks, will do" and go on about your activities without taking it to heart or you can assert yourself stating the reality of things - without being accusatory or disrespectful just matter-of-fact state that you do take care of the place but thanks for the reminder - kind of thing.
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Old 03-19-2019, 02:06 PM #7
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

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Originally Posted by unaluna View Post
I totally understand how it would feel like she is probing a sore spot. But right now, i would feel like it meant somebody cares about me. Because sitting in my messy apartment, it just proves that nobody cares about me, including myself. That probably seems extreme? But i think there is some truth in it. I wish us both the best. Every week i hope this will be the week i clean up.
Yeah, I don't think she she means to be harsh, at least usually. Pests are a problem in this area, too, so I'm sure she's paranoid about that, which I get. However, I'd let her know if it got so messy that there were mice everywhere. She reminds me to put food away and put lids on containers (again, all things I normally do), and perhaps that's just a force of habit or maybe she'd had worse tenants in the past. Anyways, I appreciate you offering that other perspective. I can definitely distort things as the world being out to get me, another result of low self-esteem. (Also, good luck to your tidying endeavors! Maybe you need a little Marie Kondo? It's definitely hard to keep up with, so don't be hard on yourself )

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Originally Posted by saidso View Post
I'm glad you have a nice house and that you are doing good stuff for yourself like painting!! That's the important thing i.m.o.
Thank you! Trying to spend less time on the computer/tv.

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Originally Posted by sarahsweets View Post
You say twice she came over and things were messy. What about all the other times? It seems to me that she's a micromanager. And she likes reminding you to do things even when they are done does that sound right to you? If that is the case it might be worth saying to her when she says those things to you and they are done to hear what she says and the. Follow it with well yes, good thing they are done now . Acknowledge what she says while at the same time giving yourself credit for having it done. Does that make sense ?
Yes, that sounds about right, and yes, that makes sense. You always give thoughtful advice, thank you! I tried conveying that in my last email to her, saying I'll be on top of things and even that I made a chore list... hopefully that helps.

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It's only damaging to one's self esteem when you hold the critical person in high enough regard that their opinions and criticisms hold weight.
That's a good point! As I mentioned earlier, I can tend to distort things and assume people are out to criticize or judge me. It's something I've been getting better about, but for some reason this person gets to me. Perhaps I'm worried that she'd get me in trouble with my job, but that'd be pretty extreme of her.
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Old 03-19-2019, 04:15 PM #8
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

AimlessHiker you sound to me like a regular Martha Stewart. Sounds to me as if you're doing a beautiful job trying to take care of your new little house. And considering it sounds as if you've been struggling with emotional problems, are also doing a beautiful job controlling yourself and putting up with this pain-in-the ***, nitpicky, perfectionist property manager. Congrats to you!

When we left our last apartment I swore I would never again be answerable to a landlord, and this post of yours reminded me of that.

I'm a homeowner now, but unfortunately have found out that as such I'm not really free of supervision, since there are always neighbors keeping an eagle, and critical, eye on one's property. But at least it beats coming home to an eviction notice.

Best wishes to you!
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Old 03-20-2019, 10:13 AM #9
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

Sounds like she is rather picky but I think we need to consider the other side of the story here.

I realise most times you do have the place tidy. But, even though the occasions are rare, the fact is that she is seeing it when it isn't so. I think it only reasonable that she assume then that it is always the case. I really like the comment above that you document - by pictures - that you are cleaning the house.

As for your art supplies and belongings stretching beyond your own space, she does have a point. However, as you have pointed out that the home is left mostly vacant at the time, maybe you can get permission to use that empty space as an art area - until such time that someone else moves in.

All I am asking is that you try to see the situation as she might be observing it.

I am sure if you approach her there may be a workable solution.
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Old 03-20-2019, 10:29 AM #10
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Default Re: venting: overbearing landlord

Quote:
Originally Posted by aimlesshiker View Post
That's a good point! As I mentioned earlier, I can tend to distort things and assume people are out to criticize or judge me. It's something I've been getting better about, but for some reason this person gets to me. Perhaps I'm worried that she'd get me in trouble with my job, but that'd be pretty extreme of her.

how would a landlord get you into trouble at your job? That makes no sense, to be blunt. I know you've acknowledged that you overthink and distort but I'm only saying this to help you rationalize this.


If she were able to affect your job, what would the motivation be? Most times when someone is out to hurt someone else it's for their own benefit in some way, so what would she get out of it by doing so? Furthermore, I would venture to guess that getting a tenant in trouble at their work would be potentially detrimental to the perpetrator's bread and butter because carry it to the extreme and your getting in trouble will get you fired which eliminates the means to be able to pay the landlord for rent, so in turn hurts them.
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