The Effect of Decluttering Mania on Children

Last time I explored the mania that now surrounds decluttering: how some people are buying elaborate (and expensive) storage systems in order to have a “perfectly organized” home.

I feel sorry for the children of these people. It’s been a long time since I raised my kids, but I clearly recall how they loved to pull out all their toys and play with them. They made quite a mess, but they had a lot of fun. By the time they were toddlers, we had taught them to throw everything back into their toy box at the end of the day so that the room was cleaned up.

But imagine being the child of someone with decluttering mania….a five-year-old picks up his Legos and throws them in a plastic box, but his mom tells him, “No, the Legos go in the green box! Don’t put them in the blue box. That box is for your Matchbox cars. No, put them in the green box, not the brown box! The brown box is for your Transformers!”

The poor kid is just trying to put his toys away, as requested, but he soon stops caring whether he puts anything away because of Mom’s complicated system.

It’s important to teach children to pick up after themselves. But if you get caught up in some pricey storage system, you may raise children who stop picking anything up at all. Kids aren’t known for their patience.

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