My dad won't stop building things in his apartment & filling it with "stuff". How can I let go of the stress this creates?
Dad recently moved to a retirement apt community; he has a nice large 1 bedroom apartment that my partner & I fully furnished for him. In the two months he's lived there he's managed to fill every bit of floor & cabinet space with misc. furniture he's been given & enough canned goods to feed him for another 20 years. His cabinets overflow with dishes & pots & pans he brought from his old house, even though his apts have a dining room and he gets 2 meals a day, 7 days a week. He loves the food & says they give him so much he has to get it boxed up to bring back to his apt. He has all this prepared food filling up his refrigerator, but insists on cooking more food. Before Christmas he decided he wanted a fireplace so he bought lumber and used power tools in his bedroom to build a mantel with surround down to the floor to put in his living room. I discovered all this after the fact & he was quite proud of his creation. Envision a mantel with surround & a big hole in the middle where a fireplace would be. He wants me to find him a "fake fireplace that will look nice in the space". After the initial shock I decided to laugh it off & let him be creative. A few days after Christmas I stopped by to visit and he's now extended his kitchen countertop along the wall 6 feet into his dining area so he'll "have more room to stack pots & pans". His apt is slowly filling up with so much stuff he's hauled from his old house & all these building projects that pretty soon it'll be so full it will be hazardous to his health.
We've had many discussions about keeping the apt picked up and neat (he has weekly maid service who vacuums & cleans the bathroom, but it's getting to the point there isn't much floor space to vacuum); he says he'll do better, but he continues to accumulate stuff... newspapers, magazines, two mounted deer heads that are over 30 years old (he wants me to sell them for him); tables are covered with stuff, his bed has clothes piled on one side and he just surrounds himself with all these "things". I'm getting close to telling him I won't come visit anymore because being around all this causes me a huge amount stress & worry. The apts are 15 minutes from my house and when we moved him there I envisioned stopping by frequently to visit, but the reality of who he is and how he lives is just so stressful & talking to him about it does no good. He has an excuse & reason for everything and he refuses to modify any of his habits. He's perfectly happy living there with all his stuff piled up around him; and now with his building projects I can only imagine what's next!
How can I let him be who he is, not let it upset & worry me about how he's turning his nice home into a "thrift shop", and also convey to him I can't come there if he's going to continue down this path?