Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Dear Internets,

What are your thoughts on roommates? I have lived alone by choice since college graduation. Despite a sometimes tight budget, I haven't really considered getting a roommate. But... a friend just asked me if she could stay with me for three or four months until she can move into a house with another friend.

I am wary of roommates, mostly because I'm terrible at living with other people. During college, I tried living with a roommate three times. My first roommate was essentially a stranger (we technically met each other while visiting the college as high school seniors, but didn't really get to know each other until we lived together our freshman year in the dorm). The roommate relationship was OK, mostly because she was super easygoing. (I was a terrible roommate - somewhat messy, depressed and weird, boyfriend around all the time, etc.) We kept in touch off and on after we moved out of the dorm, but lost touch after I transferred to a different school.

My second roommate was my high school best friend (now forever known as Psycho Ex-Roommate). She was bipolar/borderline personality with a boyfriend who was over all the time; I was stubborn yet conflict-avoidant and going through a messy breakup. The living situation (and the last remaining shreds of our friendship) ended with her throwing a rock through my living room window. We don't speak.

My third roommate was a coworker. She was a neat freak, so I did my absolute best to curb my messy tendencies. She was mostly good-natured about my few lapses (including unknowingly tracking tar all over the apartment), and I did my best to be a considerate roommate. She did have a lot of friends stay over on our couch (including my ex-boyfriend), but overall, we got along OK. Although neither one of us wanted to renew our lease, we're still friendly.

I thought I was done with my roommate days, but I guess I'm considering it again. I don't know if I want to live with another roommate, though, even for a few months. My friend has cats; I'm allergic. She has told me more than once how annoyed she gets by roommates with boyfriends; I have one of those as well. I'm fairly sure her clothes collection (she has more than will fit into her 10'X6' walk-in closet) will not fit into the tiny closets in my condo. While I like fish, I'm not sure her 100 gallon aquarium will fit in my tiny living room, and it's definitely too heavy for the flooring upstairs. Also, I have a history of alienating roommates, and don't want to jeopardize our friendship.

On the other hand, I don't want her to be in a tight spot, and I wouldn't mind a little more flexibility in my budget for a few months. But I think I still have to tell her no. Does that make me a terrible person? Be honest, Internets.

Love ya,

1 comment:

SavingDiva said...

Say that you wouldn't mind having her live with you...but....
-no cats (allergic), but I don't think you can reasonably get out of the fish tank (without sounding a bit nutty...I've been there)
-mention that you have a bf that stays over every night (even if that's not true, she'll at least be prepared for the worst)

Good luck!