How can I get my boyfriend to practice better hygiene without making him feel like a complete piece of shit?

My boyfriend is notorious for going through these "depression" phases. That's what he calls it. The way I see it is that he just gets super lazy and does nothing but smoke lots of pot, eat all the food in the house and binges on video games. During these time periods he will not shower or brush his teeth. He will simply put on different clothes and spray himself with cologne (on a good day). As of right now, I shit you not, its going on two weeks since he has bathed or brushed his teeth. I'm disgusted and repulsed by him.
When he's not going through these phases he is a germaphobe. Constantly showering and making sure that he is in no way dirty whatsoever. I truly don't understand. He will get in these phases about once every three to four months or so.
I feel bad because I am literally repulsed by him right now. His feet are black, his hair is greasy, he has more dirt under his nails than there is in our yard and his breath reaks of month old garlic. I don't want him touching me and I can't even stomach to kiss him without the urge to throw up.
How can I suggest he bathes himself? I have asked him to jump in the shower with me in hopes that that will "trick" him into it but that didn't work because he was stoned and hadn't beat his level yet.


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Most Helpful Guy

  • I really wouldn't worry about hurting his feelings just tell him for his own good. That is disgusting hygiene he needs to be told

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Most Helpful Girl

  • Since he's a germaphobe most of the time and this nasty hygiene behavior is out of his usual character, he probably does have some form of depression or other issue he's going through. However, that doesn't mean you have to deal with something that grosses you out, or pretend like there's nothing wrong. I think the most important and helpful thing here would be for him to go see a councilor or therapist of some kind, and deal with whatever underlying issues he has. Other than that, though, I think the best thing for you to do is confront him, in a kind but honest way, and tell him how his behavior is affecting you and ask him directly to change it.

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    • I have suggested seeing a therapist in the past; which he declined. Should I bring it up again? I've noticed that this behavior sparks up whenever a holiday/birthday or our anniversary is coming up. He gets upset with thinking we don't have enough money to get gifts for everyone.

    • Yeah, you should bring therapy up again. You may also want to try and get him to open up about exactly what he's thinking/feeling, and why. If he has any reliable friends or family who you'd be able to talk to, then it might be a good idea to ask for their advice and help too. You shouldn't have to do this by yourself.
      And, I hate to say this, but you may need to offer him an ultimatum ("get counseling or I'm leaving") or something. That may be hard for him, but you've got to remember that your happiness and well being are important too.
      Good luck. <3

What Guys Said 4

  • Throw him a pillow and some cover on the couch. He will ask what that is for , tell him until he gets cleaned up that is his new bedroom

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  • Give him compliments and/or reward him when he actually does shower and brush his teeth. Positive reinforcement could make him want to keep clean.

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  • Tell him he isn't depressed, he's just a lazy pot addict and if he doesn't clean himself up regularly then don't see him until he does.

    Sometimes it hurts being straight forward, but it is also needed.

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  • This is hilarious.

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What Girls Said 3

  • He is being a piece of shit and if he is the germaphobe you say he is, he's fully aware how disgusting a state he gets himself into in his little "phases".

    Just flat out tell him he reeks and there's no way in hell you're touching him until he cleans himself up.

    I would never compromise on hygiene.

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  • It's funny how 90% of girls practice nice, if not amazing personal hygiene, yet guys will still always find something to complain about, like her breast size, butt size, hair color etc. It's so hypocritical and hilarious.

    You should absolutely not have to deal with that. I know I wouldn't. It's ''personal'' hygiene for a reason.
    BUT, if you are indeed in a long, commited relationship, then you should make him pull himself together. Just confront him about it. What's the use of a relationship if you can't even be honest?

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  • Jeez, how do you deal with that? I would have dumped him long ago.

    Get rid of his pot, stand in front of the tv, and tell him he needs to shower.

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