Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, scoliosis, back problems, hypothyroidism.
Boy, Sue, what a mess! I know I wouldn't put up with that for an instant. You could even lose your maid over this..not to mention your mind! I would start out letting them know that you love them very much BUT there will be will be rules of this household. Rules are needed to keep things running smoothly. (You make the rules, Sue. It's your home and you have opened it to these adults. The least they can do is carry their weight. If they want to make their own rules, tell them they can leave, get their own place, and make their own rules.) If people don't follow the rules, they have to leave. You will not ask them to do these things. They are adults and they will have to be responsible for themselves. Period. Make that perfectly clear and you do need to follow up on it. If you don't, you will be back where you are now, except it will probably get worse.
1.) They have to keep their surrounding clean and picked up. Many hands do make light work. Wherever they sleep needs to be kept clean and picked up...that means dusting and vacuuming, beds made, etc. If they don't cooperate then they have to leave.
2.) A list will be made of household chores. There will be a list to clean up the dishes, cook, to empty the dishwasher, to do the garbage, to vacuum the house, to mop the floors, etc. Everyone has to take a turn at these chores. Maybe have a numbered list of all the people in the house and have it by these lists. Then they can easily see if they are the next in line for the chore. See what I mean? Remember, it's their responsibility to check the lists. (Now, they can most certainly remind the others if they see that the others aren't doing the job.) If they do not cooperate, the deal is off and they have to leave.
3.)The meal menu and sharing the cost is a good plan. I would tell them that any snacks they want, they have to buy. I wouldn't pay for junk food. If you and your husband have snacks you enjoy, put them where they won't have access to them. When you buy fruit, cheese, lunchmeats, dips, etc., put them in a zip loc bag with your name on them. (They can do the same.) You will know if people are eating your things. Or, if you can arrange the fridge so each couple has a shelf to share and that's the only food they can eat, you could do that. This can help with some people pigging out on the food while others don't eat that much. If they continue to eat your foods, the deal is off and they have to leave.
It's tough love, for sure, but you can't go on the way you are. I'm sure others will be on with good suggestions, too. But, there is no excuse that these adults can't pitch in and do their share in this bad situation. Everyone has to work together for this to work. If they won't, they need to go someplace else.
Fibromyalgia since 2007