"My boyfriend's Marie Kondo-esque habit is driving me insane."


I remember the first time it happened.

I gave him a birthday card. It said “Congratulations on your baby boy’s Baptism!” on the front, obviously, and inside a very thoughtful acrostic poem. He seemed to like it. At first. 

Later that night, I was clearing my plate into the bin, when I saw a cartoon baby staring up at me.


It looked a lot like the baptised baby that sat on the front of the card I’d given him only a few hours earlier.

“Did you throw out my card?” I asked him, as I maintained eye contact with the sad, abandoned infant.

“Yeah, of course,” he said. “You saw me read it.”

We're shook.


'What kind of psychopath throws a card out after reading it?' I wondered, as I edged towards the front door, grabbing my things in a hurry.

"It's just that it was a pretty simple card," he added. "Why would I keep it? Where would I put it?".

Little did he know that I've kept every card he's ever given me. "IN THE MISCELLANEOUS BOX EVERYONE HAS NEXT TO THEIR BED," I replied, knowing full well that the idea of a miscellaneous box would upset him.

You see, my boyfriend is Marie Kondo but more ruthless and less interested in 'joy'.

Once I watched as he threw out my hair elastic that sat on a coffee table because, and I quote, "it was creating clutter".

Who throws out a hair elastic?

Sometimes I glance at him as he looks around the room, sure he is seriously considering throwing me in the bin on account of taking up too much space and also looking a little... messy.

Tidying guru Marie Kondo is actually quite flexible on the subject of cards. She does say, however, that many people fear by throwing out these objects they'll lose the "legacy that goes with them". But the best-selling author and now Netflix host says this isn't at all the case. Truly special moments, she believes, don't disappear, even when you get rid of the objects associated with them.


I became convinced that my boyfriend threw out my card because it didn't spark enough joy, so by Christmas, I had a new plan.

I purchased a, "I'm deeply sorry for your loss," card and filled it with 500 heartfelt words. There were stick figures. There were compliments. There were love hearts. None of this came naturally to me, but I knew I had to commit.


He liked it very much. He gave me a cuddle. He put it on his bedside table alongside nothing because it's always empty.

The next day, however, it had vanished.

"Oi," I shouted. "Where's my card at?"

I knew from the look in his eyes - a mix of guilt but also pride - that he had thrown it away. In the recycling. Which is his single favourite hobby.

I may or may not have made him fish it out, which ultimately made no difference because it's since been officially disposed of.

Surely - even as we're decluttering our lives - there are some things worth keeping?

Isn't it lovely to look back over old cards, and remember things you might otherwise forget?

It's not like they even take up that much space, for goodness sake.

Donate bags of clothes, sure. Give away your books.

But leave cards out of it.