Separate Closets Promise

Separate closets save marriages.  Our wedding vows are the most sacred and beautiful promises exchanged. Out of the numerous vows and promises made that day, but one important vow is notoriously absent from wedding ceremonies. To ensure the survival of marriages across the world, we should change the words exchanged to say:
“I, ___, take you, ___, to be my husband/wife. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, and I promise never to share closet space until death do us part.”
I want to kiss the genius who designed the first separate closets. They deserve the Nobel Peace prize for their contribution to marital bliss.

Opposites Attract           opposites attract

Opposites do in deed attract.  Much like magnets, when pushed together on the wrong side, opposites can push against one another in a clash of powers.  Marrying our polar opposite, and sharing the same space can be a challenge.  In fact, I recently wrote about one challenge my husband and I have dealt with that can cause arguments.  It is the clash of the “messy” spouse vs. “tidy” spouse.

One definition for marriage defines it as “a combination or mixture of two or more elements.”  Precisely what marriage accomplishes.  We combine and mix finances, living space, and family traditions.  Most married people know full well that sharing is the name of the game in Holy matrimony.  Joining everything and sharing bonds us together.  With one exception, closet space.

separate closets, marriage, his, organizedWelcome to “His” Closet

Close your eyes and stroll with me into the fairy tale land.  The sun is always shining, birds chirping, and music seems to ride on the wind.  Everything in the land aptly named “his” is beautiful, clean, and perfect.

In the land of clean and orderly, the floor is always spotless, the door opens unimpeded, and nothing is ever out of place.  All his shoes line up and face the same direction.  He sorts our laundry hamper.  He arranges his closet shelves where everything is in plain view, turned forward, and the picture of perfect order.  Most people cram stuff onto shelves in no particular order.  Not him!

As if the shelves are not enough, his hanging clothes are a strategically planned department store.   All his pants hang on one side of the closet, and shirts on the other (seasonally arranged and color-coded to boot).  Even his belts and ties hang in strict formation on hooks.  No stitch of clothing, or item, is out of place, EVER!  God forbid if you find anything just tossed on the floor.  Pretty sure that would only happen if he ceased to exist.

“Her” Closet: Enter at Your Own Risk

Oh, the glory of separate closets.  The one place I can leave a holy mess without worrying about making someone else completely crazy.  If you think the junk drawer in the house is chaotic, my closet is the place of nightmares for my darling husband.  To him, “it is a lovely room of death!”  On that note alone I never, I mean NEVER, leave the door open.separate closets, lovely room of death

In my “room of death,” I have boxes and random items crammed on all the shelves built into my closet.  In one corner of the floor lay countless numbers of bags and purses (packed like sardines), old books, and random unknown items.  Come to think of it; I am not even sure WHAT lives under all my hanging clothes!

Stacks and Stacks

Along with my stacks of items, I have an extensive collection of yarn is haphazardly stuffed into plastic bins.  It is not uncommon to find my clothes draped and piled everywhere.  I wedge my shoes onto shelves or shove them into baskets. My laundry basket always holds a huge pile of clean clothes on top of it.   Heck! I am lucky if the door will open without being stopped in its tracks from the clothes I tossed on the floor after changing for the day.  Laundry day saves those pieced of clothing at some point.

After my stoic hubby finishes the family laundry, he stacks them on top of the laundry basket inside the door of my room of chaos.  He does not have to see a thing past that point.  He stacks it. And stacks it. And STACKS IT!  Most of the clothes he stacks will stay in that pile sometimes for 3-4 weeks. Admittedly, I dig through that pile for clothes to wear on a daily basis. Yes. I wear them wrinkled.

Pretty sure a closet monster lives in there. This haunts my hubs and is probably one the reasons he never enters.  He may never make it out alive!

Separate Closets Saves Marriagesseparate closets, marriage

Claiming that having separate closets “saves marriages” is tongue and cheek.  It would be silly to say that a messy closet sends marriages into the throws of divorce proceedings.  What does cause failure is when one, or both persons in the relationship fails to respect the needs of the other.
In the case of the messy vs. neat couples, we are not meeting the needs of the other when we making a mess all over the house.  It causes tempers to flare. The “neat” spouse can feel unimportant.  To them, it is disrespectful and inconsiderate to make a mess when they put effort into making things organized. On the flip-side, the “messy” one also feels disrespected and that they cannot be themselves to please the other.  Resentment builds if couples do not find a way to compromise.


Compromise is crucial in marriage.  It certainly becomes necessary in the case of messy vs tidy.  Having a separate closet space can bridge the divide. It allows the “junk drawer” a place where they can be the giant mess they are and just throw that shirt on the floor, close the door, and walk away without guilt.  It is their space.  The compromise allows for freedom for all.
Honestly, we have worked hard to compromise in this particular area.  I attempt to keep my piles around the general house to a minimum and confined to my closet. However, when my mess spills over into the rest of the house, he tries to give me grace. He allows me to be “me” without much complaint.  We compromise in ways that show the other that we value what keeps them sane. We do it without losing who we are in the process.  We both win.separate closets, marriage, save
Eventually, like today, I successfully put my stack of clothes away. When this happens I feel accomplished because I FINALLY put away the four Mile high mountain of clean clothes piled on the hamper in my closet. Hey, I DO have something to wear today!
I gloriously announce to my husband, “My pile is finally gone!” To which he replies, “Why, so you can begin a new one today?” Yep, and I thank the closet Gods for separate closets.