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Dads: What annoys you in the kitchen?



Soggy bread clogging the plug hole, cutlery in the sink, anything left on the kitchen counter in front of the microwave. I didn’t think I was fussy, but this year I have developed some bugbears about kitchen use.

Apparently, I am not alone . John, 62, who lives in Essex with his wife and 24 year-old daughter says: “One of the things that annoys me the most is when the family doesn’t fill up or empty the dishwasher when it’s needed. Since I’ve now got more hours in the kitchen from working less during lockdown, I seem to have developed a close relationship with the dishwasher, constantly filling it up while everyone else leaves their plates and bowls on the side.  

A survey by Magnet has found that for those living with their families, 76% are getting annoyed with their family in the kitchen. Is it any surprise. Eating out is now just a distant memory, never, ever have our kitchens worked so hard.  

Dirty Kitchen Habits

Never has a truer word been spoken than by Mark, 29,  a dad from Birmingham  – “When I come home from a long day at work, the most annoying thing is when the family have piled the dishes up in the sink. I try to make sure I do my share of the chores as we have two little ones, and my wife spends the day looking after the girls, homeschooling and cleaning (when she gets the chance). But how am I meant to fill the sink with all of the dishes taking up the space? I like to think it makes more sense to have the dishes along the side but my wife disagrees, so I just leave her to it, and then take them out”. 

The research found the following are the 10 biggest pet peeves for families in the kitchen. How many can you tick off?  

  1. They cause a mess in the kitchen while cooking and preparing food 

2. They don’t offer help to clean the kitchen/never clean the kitchen themselves 

3. They rarely or never wash the dishes 

4. They rarely or never wipe the worktop after use 

5. They rarely or never take the rubbish out 

6. They fail to clean dishes properly, leaving them dirty/greasy 

7. They interfere with or take over my cooking 

8. They rarely or never clean the hob 

9. They rarely or never clean the microwave 

10. They nag me about keeping the kitchen tidy 

The survey of 2,000 UK respondents also found: Dishes piling up in the sink is the most annoying habit for respondents (25%), followed by not wiping the worktop after use (25%) and failing to wash dishes properly (24%) 

Jason, 55, West Midlands whose son in his early twenties has moved home for a while, is struggling to protect his worktop as his son “used the kitchen surfaces without a bread board to make lunches – which filled me with annoyance and worry over the sides being permanently marked. We ended up constantly leaving a board out on the surface to encourage him to use this.” 

Alan, 57, East Midlands just generally feels annoyed about the height of the worktops in his kitchen. They’re too low for me, but the perfect height for my wife and kids. As they’re lower than I’d like it makes spending time prepping dinner or cooking uncomfortable, so I don’t often volunteer to help if I can get away with it.” 

The kitchen is the heart of the home, so it’s no surprise that it’s in here that our passions can rise to the surface. If someone you live with is making a mess in the kitchen, while you’re trying to cook or clean, it can cause irritability. However, this can be contagious and children can pick up on this too.  

Tips to help

Make a rule to have only one person in the kitchen at one time 

Create a rota to divide cooking and cleaning responsibilities. If everyone sticks to the rota, reward yourselves with a treat at the end of the week 

Have a themed night once a week, dress up and cook food around your theme to bring a bit of fun to the dinner table 

If possible, take it in turns making meals for the house or family, so not one person is cooking all the time

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