Question: We just recently purchased a house and somehow we inherited the handyman along with the house. He keeps referring to the house as the prior owner’s house…and he’s even gone so far as to recommend we do things based on the prior owner. My husband doesn’t want anything to do with him, but my feelings are that he’s worked on this house for 10 yrs and loved it, so if he continues to work on it he’ll put his heart into it vs. just trying to gouge us. I just don’t trust he will treat this like OUR house or he’ll cross some line because he thinks he has more invested in this house than we do! What would you do?
Answer: It’s wild how life gives us equal challenge and support, yes? Thank you for your question that celebrates your new home while being simultaneously challenged by the handyman who won’t even address you as the new owners. Ouch.
And isn’t it curious how so many people identify their worth based on material objects or accomplishments?
I know I certainly did this when I wouldn’t sell my home when I got a divorce. You see I had renovated it with my mother‘s inheritance and while my mother was clearly dead and it was just four walls and a roof… I had the most difficult time selling it as a newly divorced motherless single mother, so much difficulty that I stayed far too long and almost went into forclosure.
I tell you the story not to condone the handyman’s behavior as it must feel rude that he won’t acknowledge you as the old owners and feel uncomfortable that he wants to let you know that he potential he loves the house more than you do. I tell you that story simply to provide another point of view that he feels emotionally bonded to the house and somehow sees it as an extension of his worth and identity.
This of course can go two ways where indeed he will cross some lines and never acknowledge you as the new owners and be a royal pain in the ass. Or from another point of view, you may be tremendously lucky to have someone who knows the ins and outs of the house and takes tremendous care and value in making sure things work well. So long as he’s acknowledged for this gift, he may have your back for years to come.
Bottom line you can’t control how he’s going to behave and you can’t make him do what you want… but you can influence the greatest outcome with your point of view, attitude, releasing of resistance and coming into allowance of who the handyman is and who the handyman isn’t.
Does that make sense? He comes with some quirks that’s for sure… But if you could be gracious enough to acknowledge his worth based on what he’s provided I think you’re going to get the greatest cooperation from him.
And if the fact that he doesn’t acknowledge your ownership, that simply goes against your core values and he’ll be a consistent irritation then I would let him go and find someone fresh.
I would have a conversation with your husband about the advantages in disadvantages of exactly who he is and how he isn’t… And as in aligned team make the highest choice for your relationship and your new home 🙂 I know you can do it.
This is great practice for strengthening your honoring intimate conscious communication with your husband. Should the two of you require support and even healthier communication skills and intimacy rituals that builds connection over time, I would be thrilled to see you in my inbox having applied for a complementary session.
I wish more couples were proactive about strengthening their partnerships before challenges arise… because one thing you can count on is a fantastic love life filled with both support and challenge, yes? Otherwise known as marriage, yes? We simply want to learn to dance with the challenges in a way that works with our vision, not against it. And we want to be sure to appreciate the support our partner provides in a way that truly lands for them, yes?
Let me know what you choose with the handyman!
Here for you, great love, Allana
Also, If you have a burning question about love, dating or life in general for me, comment below, or ask me on Twitter @AllanaPratt and just use #AllanaQandA.