U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Closed Thread Start New Thread
Old 01-19-2017, 09:16 PM
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,484 posts, read 43,747,138 times
Reputation: 47257


He is 77 year old retired Electrical Engineer with 2 degrees and a successful career under his belt. Today he left for a doctor's appointment in old baggy-butted jeans, a black tee shirt and an old flannel shirt unbuttoned over it. Ratty old tennis shoes too and a stocking cap. But the worst part is he wears his key ring on his belt and it hangs down and makes noise with so many keys on it. He looks like a janitor or a building super.

He has nice khakis, button-down shirts, jackets and sweaters and better shoes in his closet but he only wears them when I am going out with him and ask him to "clean up" a little bit.

He showers daily, has regular haircuts and gets his beard nicely trimmed and he has acknowledged he gets better treatment in shops and restaurants when he is dressed better but he just doesn't seem to care enough to present himself better...unless I gently remind him.

Also he really didn't have to wear a suit or even a tie for quite some time while he was still working so it's not like he is rebelling.

I'm no fashion plate but at least I try to wear something better than knock-around-the-house clothes when I go out.

Now I hear some saying "Leave the man alone. He's not hurting anybody" but I think he is hurting himself even if he doesn't realize it. I realize he is not going to change but I am wondering if other women are having the same issue with their elderly husbands.

Old 01-19-2017, 09:34 PM
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,729,443 times
Reputation: 32304
I am not the type of respondent you are asking for here, as I am male, divorced, and live alone. I understand your concern. But imagine how much worse it could be - at least your husband dresses better when the two of you are going somewhere together. I dress better than what you describe when going to the doctor or dentist, but sometimes for the grocery store or similar I'm close to the same as your husband.

Also, dress standards change over time, and there is a lot more leeway now than there was 30 or 40 years ago. So I think maybe you're a bit on the "strict" side.

Hope you get lots of wives to respond.
Old 01-19-2017, 10:00 PM
Location: SoCal
13,205 posts, read 6,313,926 times
Reputation: 9820
My husband is a better dresser than me, he always been that way. Except he doesn't mind wearing t-shirt with corporate logos. So if it bothers me, I throw them out without him knowing it. Every year I get him nice new clothes to replace it. I suggest you throw out some of his old clothes, thereby it forces him to wear new ones.
Old 01-19-2017, 10:11 PM
10,812 posts, read 8,058,272 times
Reputation: 17010
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
I realize he is not going to change but I am wondering if other women are having the same issue with their elderly husbands.
DH is 66, younger than me, and has been retired for 4 years now. He always was and remains a fastidious dresser. Frankly I'd like to see him let go a little and I'd be fine if he dressed as you describe your husband. Full disclosure: he is fit and trim so would look good in just about anything. But if he was pudgy and saggy, I'd adore him no less. Regardless I wouldn't patronize any restaurant or business that I felt was dissing him.

Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
He showers daily, has regular haircuts and gets his beard nicely trimmed
As long as he does that and wears clean clothes, honestly I don't see the problem.
Old 01-19-2017, 10:19 PM
Location: Wasilla, AK
7,235 posts, read 4,128,251 times
Reputation: 15585
Make up a "Need money" sign and put him on a street corner or traffic island. Might as well make lemonade.
Old 01-19-2017, 10:21 PM
Location: Planet Woof
3,139 posts, read 3,506,027 times
Reputation: 9889
This is a battle not worth fighting, IMHO. He could be doing a whole lot of worse things. Better to love and accept him as he is and let him wear what he wants as his own form of personal expression. At least he ups the ante when you go out together in more formal settings. If he's happy then you be happy for him and reduce your own stress level of worrying about what he wears. Que sera...
Old 01-19-2017, 10:25 PM
5,425 posts, read 3,445,259 times
Reputation: 13698
I think your description of how your husband dresses, no kudzu, sounds terrible, especially when going to appointments or out in the world, and it's best not to look like a bum at home too most of the time. I would not want to look at that every day or any day.

It would be great if you could throw away the "old baggy-butted jeans, old flannel shirt, ratty old tennis shoes". And stop with the keys attached to a belt. I don't like stocking caps on men except in the coldest of conditions and not inside.

Not a good frame of mind for either of you, having him dress like a homeless person. I support your position.
Old 01-19-2017, 10:25 PM
6,236 posts, read 4,721,373 times
Reputation: 12751
I have never understood women and their need to show off and preen. They complain but continue to shave their legs, pluck eyebrows, cinch it up, wear dresses in the middle of the winter, and in general behave without any semblance of sanity.

Then we can look at men. Wow! No sense of fashion, no idea of looking "good". Men wear absolutely ridiculous clothing as part of a work uniform. It starts with a "tie". This originally identified the regiment as a part of the English military tradition. We also adopted clothing suitable to living in a dank, English castle. Come on wool clothing in the middle of the summer, even in the 100 plus degree temps when I lived in Phoenix? How dumb can we get?

And you wonder why Mr No Kudzu no longer wants to keep up with this nonsense? Why do you?
Old 01-19-2017, 10:55 PM
498 posts, read 364,380 times
Reputation: 1678
Mine is only 50, still working and dresses almost exactly as you describe.
No advice to add, but I do understand the issue. Sorry.
Old 01-19-2017, 11:06 PM
5,410 posts, read 2,819,339 times
Reputation: 10106
Have you asked HIM why he dresses that way? Sounds pretty comfortable, and maybe he prefers that despite not presenting a neater image to the world.

He will not be mistaken for a homeless person if he showers daily, shaves, and the clothes don't have holes or ragged edges.
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.

Closed Thread

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top