Roommate Drama – Request for Advice

Ok there has been some major drama going on at my place lately between me and my roommate.

She’s just too immature, self-centered and irresponsible for me to live with much longer. She doesn’t clean anything (I take care of 95% of the work around the house on a regular basis) and then complains the single time I don’t take the garbage out to her liking. She talks to me in a condescending way and tries to make me feel bad.

She uses my things without asking and takes advantage of me and my generous nature in numerous ways. She even makes me take care of her when she’s sick and give her MY medicine! She always wants to split costs “to be fair”, but only when it suits her. She’s currently pulling that stunt with my BBQ tank and I’m  pretty pissed off.

Anyway, there has been tension for a while. On Friday we had a rather nasty text message exchange (initiated by her because she can’t be bothered to speak to someone in person) which just sort of pushed me over the edge…

Since I’ve been on my antidepressants I’ve been growing my spine back. When she started living here I would let her walk all over me and bottle everything up. Now I’m starting to crack. I think she is noticing the difference and not liking it. I’m standing up for myself more and not taking as much of her shit.

Anyway, I spent the whole weekend furious over her and the whole situation (despite best efforts of myself and my bff to keep my mind off things). I’ve got a lot of pent up things I want to say to her and have been planning it since Sunday, but we have yet to cross paths at home.

Among the things I wanted to say was that she needs to either shape up or ship out. I’m tired of her attitude and irresponsibility. Tired of everything.

Rather than kicking her out right away (as my friends suggest) I was planning to let her stay if she could shape up… While regularly I wouldn’t need her half of the rent to carry my apartment, for the next few months having it would be much easier… I have to start repaying my surgery loan from my Granny which will be a big chunk of my budget (28% to be exact!) every month.

She did send me an “apology” email, but I don’t believe it’s very sincere. I didn’t really reply to it other than to ask if she was home soon so we could talk. Here it is for your viewing pleasure:

“Hey, I wanted to talk to you tonight. I just wanted to say sorry about Friday. I feel pretty bad about it, and the whole spiel was entirely unnecessary. I feel crummy. Don’t want any bad blood between us. I could be more understanding, and I’m working on it. We live together, being in harmony is a way better option than being hostile and tense all over. I want things to be good between us, and I apologize.

And I hope you have a stellar week next week.”

Now, for the twist

My roommate wrote a cryptic status update on her Facebook wall this morning, then followed it up with a comment in another language. I translated this comment and discovered that she’s planning to move out in Feb and hasn’t even told me yet!

This is a huge complication for me!

Here is what she wrote:
Roommate: yes, the eclipse is working its lunar magic. And I’ve made a decision.
Friend:
an eclipse today or yesterday?
Roommate:
already been! sorry, I’ll write about Berlin. I first wrote the e-mail with people to make reservations. I need to ask your advice about Apartments in the room or I’ll rentovat. you just can stay with me, and then we shall understand how much to pay. All write! I’ve got a crisis now – I’m trying to decide whether to move to my new Apartment in February or not. I think so. Have you ever moved in the winter?

At this point I don’t really know what to do. We have agreed to meet in person at home on Wednesday evening to sort things out between us, but I don’t know how to handle this situation.

Do I confront her about wanting to move out? I mean… I DO want her to move out, just not straight away.

Do I start in with a conversation about the lack of work and consideration she has, and then see what she says? (Oh… I’m planning to move out)

Is there a compromise in there somewhere? February is a crappy time to move. I would like rent for a little longer and she would likely want better weather to move. Do I suggest that we agree to live together until March or April, and then split amicably?

WHAT DO I DO???

4 thoughts on “Roommate Drama – Request for Advice”

  1. Well, the apology seemed somewhat sincere if taken alone.

    It sounds like you do need to talk, but I would strongly advise against it becoming an airing of grievances. Although you both seem to have issues with one another, from what I can tell, neither of you will probably be very responsive to what the other person has to say and despite best intentions, I don't see such a conversation ending well. I have been known to be wrong, though.

    I would, though, try to calmly discuss the entire moving situation. I would probably avoid the entire line of thought that's centered around 'I want you to move out' because if those words or any that sound like it come out of your mouth, you can probably forget about her hearing anything else at all. You do need to find out if she is planning to move in February, and if so, to get her to be honest and forthcoming about her plans.

    I would also encourage you to spend some time, before you talk, trying to put yourself in her shoes and see why she may be feeling and acting the way she does. Maybe she really is just completely immature, but I guess I'd really encourage you to be honest with yourself and see if there's anything that you have done or said that might make it where she doesn't feel she can openly talk about moving or that may have led to some of the problems the two of you are having. If you start off putting her on the defensive, that's probably going to lead to a bad conversation from the get-go, but if you start off with a 'hey, I know we both could have done things differently and here's what I wish I would have done different', that has a better chance of leading to a calm and honest talk.

    Good luck.

  2. Yikes, I'm sorry you're having roommate drama. Never fun. But things will all work out okay in the end, don't worry.

    My take would be to follow Money Beagle's advice. You may wish to talk about the problems you're having together, but I agree that since you don't seem very happy to hear she's potentially moving out in February when actually faced with the possibility, it would probably be wise to focus on her public Facebook comment about moving then and ask her about it. Because you won't convince her to stay longer if you don't get her to talk about what's going on with that.

    But keep in mind that she doesn't HAVE to stay and she doesn't have a responsibility to you to stay. Her main concern is not likely to be your budget. This is just one of the drawbacks of living with a roommate and you need to accept it gracefully if she's already made her decision. If you truly need another roommate to help out financially for a little while and your roomie does move out in Feb, then maybe you'll just have to get someone else temporarily. Surely your granny would be reasonable under the circumstances and perhaps let you make a lower payment schedule while you try to find a new roommate or perhaps just skip a payment for one month or two and make it up later?

  3. Seeing as Festivus is on Thursday, I suggest airing of grievances. :)

    In all seriousness – it's hard to say based on the limited and one sided nature of this post, but I tend to agree with what others have said: focus on what she said publicly on FB but be honest in how you feel. Chances are she doesn't realize just how you feel about the cleaning etc.

    And in the heat of the discussion try to be as open as possible. Use "I" rather than "You" as much as you can, it will help keep her off the defensive.

  4. I'd definitely ask her about her moving comment – it's really important that you know. Try not to be too aggressive, though. I know you haven't had great luck with her (or your last roommate) in the past, but being angry isn't going to make anything better. Also keep in mind that Mercury is still in retrograde, so things can be easily taken out of context or misunderstood. Seek to clear up the problem and be as open as you can, then see what steps can be taken to move forward.

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