Author Topic: Roomate Having Several Guests Over Update #33  (Read 9418 times)

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Adelaide

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Roomate Having Several Guests Over Update #33
« on: June 03, 2014, 12:14:05 AM »
I moved in with a friend and signed a lease for a small, two-bedroom apartment for two and a half months. At the time she was single and we didn't discuss guests much, but she mentioned that she'd like to have a couple of friends over since she has an air mattress. Again, we didn't discuss it a lot and the only thing I really remember is that she said that she wouldn't bring "random people" over to play scrabble. Additionally, she got a girlfriend while we've been down here and after the girlfriend stayed a night with us my roommate said it would likely be "a few weeks" before she came back. At one point, my roommate left her girlfriend sleeping in her bed-that meant that I couldn't leave for a few hours, since I don't leave strangers alone in my apartment.

It's been three weeks and she's already had three different people (one of which is the new girlfriend) stay over for about eight days total. The girlfriend is a smoker, which means that whenever she comes in I have to leave the living room/common area if she's in it-I have asthma and I start coughing if I'm around her when she's been smoking. (At this point she's being careful not to sit on the furniture in the living room and I don't smell smoke in the apartment.) I was woken up on Saturday by the sound of one of these friends puking into a bucket, and when I got up and went to sit on the couch I found said friend sprawled out there because she'd refused to sleep on the air mattress in my roommate's bedroom.

I'm getting sick of all of these people coming in and out and I feel like my space is being invaded at this point. I moved in with someone who was single and wanted to have "a couple of friends over" and I feel like I'm slowly being taken advantage of. However, I don't like people in my space and I know that it's causing me not to think rationally about the situation. Has anyone else dealt with this sort of issue with a roommate? I don't know how to approach the situation. I was thinking about sitting her down and asking to negotiate a set number of days she'd have people over-after all, we're only down here for two more months. But I wasn't sure, and worse case scenario is that I get total push-back on the idea. I don't even know what a reasonable number of days to have people over would be. (For the record I'm not going to have anyone over myself, but I'd like a hard limit for her or I feel like she's just going to keep coming in, visitor in tow, and saying "Oh, so-and-so's spending the night!"
« Last Edit: June 18, 2014, 09:14:27 AM by Adelaide »

purple

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2014, 02:51:26 AM »
So, you have only about 8 weeks left?

I don't think you'd be wise to make a fuss, honestly.  Just hole up in your room when you're home and move out as soon as the lease is up.  Take it as a life-lesson.  You know what you did wrong now, by not discussing and laying out clear house rules.

IMO, generally, people are better off living in a smaller or not-as-nice place that they can afford alone than with any kind of roommate.  That's the way I've always done it.  I've never shared accommodation with anybody and I've seen plenty of good friendships and even family relationships fall apart when people try to live together.  IMO, it's not worth it.

sweetonsno

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2014, 03:15:32 AM »
I wouldn't make this a Big Deal, but I do think that you would be perfectly within your rights to ask that she clear it with you before leaving guests unattended in the apartment and/or allowing them to sleep in shared areas.

"Roommie, it made me uncomfortable the other day when I came out and found someone sleeping on our couch. My understanding was that your guests would be sleeping on the air mattress in your room. Can we discuss our 'guest policy' sometime?"

blarg314

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2014, 03:45:36 AM »

Given that you've got a limited time left, I'd just address the big ones.

For me, that would be

- overnight guests need to sleep in roommate's bedroom, not the common areas

- no puking in a bucket

- no visitors, including girlfriend, in the apartment when your roommate isn't there

And yes, you're being taken advantage of.

Ceallach

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2014, 04:03:21 AM »
This is actually an incredibly common issue in flatting / share house arrangements.   You are not being unreasonable at all, nor is she wrong to want to host her friends.  The issue is a difference in what you originally agreed, and differing expectations in what's reasonable.  That can only be resolved through communication and compromise I'm afraid!   And in many cases, by the end of the arrangement and both moving on to roommates who are a better match for their social style.
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dirtyweasel

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2014, 04:15:43 AM »

Given that you've got a limited time left, I'd just address the big ones.

For me, that would be

- overnight guests need to sleep in roommate's bedroom, not the common areas

- no puking in a bucket

- no visitors, including girlfriend, in the apartment when your roommate isn't there

And yes, you're being taken advantage of.

Yeah, even though your lease is going to be up soon I'd at least address leaving guests alone in the house while she leaves.  I wouldn't be cool with that especially if I don't know the person and my door has no lock on it.  That's just asking for trouble.



Another Sarah

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2014, 06:41:07 AM »
So, you have only about 8 weeks left?

I don't think you'd be wise to make a fuss, honestly.  Just hole up in your room when you're home and move out as soon as the lease is up.  Take it as a life-lesson.  You know what you did wrong now, by not discussing and laying out clear house rules.

IMO, generally, people are better off living in a smaller or not-as-nice place that they can afford alone than with any kind of roommate.  That's the way I've always done it.  I've never shared accommodation with anybody and I've seen plenty of good friendships and even family relationships fall apart when people try to live together.  IMO, it's not worth it.

I don't think that's quite fair - lots of people get on fine living with room mates - I've lived with friends and moved in with strangers and in 11 years of living with roommates I've had maybe two issues, one when I was a college student and one recently. Sure you might get an odd one here and there but that doesn't mean it never works.

OP I think the key here is communication - the worst thing you can do is stew about the issue because it will become bigger in your mind than it needs to be. When you are alone with your room mate ask for a quick chat - explain that you think people have been over a bit too often recently and ask her to cool it down a bit. I wouldn't hesitate to ask her to make sure her guests go before/when she does because you're not comfortable leaving people alone in the flat.
BUT
Yes you moved in with a single person - but she got a girlfriend. It happens, and it wasn't done to take advantage of you and it's natural for her to want to spend time with the girlfriend. You also need to be ready to compromise, especially over this issue - if her smoking is a problem, set smoking rules (although it sounds like she's already trying to be considerate which is a plus) rather than ask her not to come round.

Above all, remember that your friend is a reasonable person - that's why you're friends, after all - so approach it from a "let's resolve this miscommunication" stance not a "you're doing stuff I don't like" stance.

Ceallach

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2014, 08:00:56 AM »
So, you have only about 8 weeks left?

I don't think you'd be wise to make a fuss, honestly.  Just hole up in your room when you're home and move out as soon as the lease is up.  Take it as a life-lesson.  You know what you did wrong now, by not discussing and laying out clear house rules.

IMO, generally, people are better off living in a smaller or not-as-nice place that they can afford alone than with any kind of roommate.  That's the way I've always done it.  I've never shared accommodation with anybody and I've seen plenty of good friendships and even family relationships fall apart when people try to live together.  IMO, it's not worth it.

I disagree, I formed a lot of my adult friendships through house shares.  Yes, there are friends I wouldn't live with again, and there were definitely times where the living arrangements had to change for the sake of the friendship surviving, but there are so many wonderful memories that form when living with somebody, it can be a great communal experience.
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Yvaine

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2014, 08:55:41 AM »
So, you have only about 8 weeks left?

I don't think you'd be wise to make a fuss, honestly.  Just hole up in your room when you're home and move out as soon as the lease is up.  Take it as a life-lesson.  You know what you did wrong now, by not discussing and laying out clear house rules.

IMO, generally, people are better off living in a smaller or not-as-nice place that they can afford alone than with any kind of roommate.  That's the way I've always done it.  I've never shared accommodation with anybody and I've seen plenty of good friendships and even family relationships fall apart when people try to live together.  IMO, it's not worth it.

I disagree, I formed a lot of my adult friendships through house shares.  Yes, there are friends I wouldn't live with again, and there were definitely times where the living arrangements had to change for the sake of the friendship surviving, but there are so many wonderful memories that form when living with somebody, it can be a great communal experience.

I've had both. I've roomed with a near-stranger, ended up living there for two years, and we're still friends seventeen years later. I've roomed with friends and had it kill the friendship. I feel like I've actually had more luck starting out with people I didn't know well--maybe it made us more considerate of each other, and friendship developed. Rooming with people I was already friends with, maybe we presumed too much on each other, made too many assumptions. Or my memory might even be faulty, I'm not sure.

JenJay

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2014, 09:02:22 AM »

Given that you've got a limited time left, I'd just address the big ones.

For me, that would be

- overnight guests need to sleep in roommate's bedroom, not the common areas

- no puking in a bucket

- no visitors, including girlfriend, in the apartment when your roommate isn't there

And yes, you're being taken advantage of.

I agree on all points

Sophia

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2014, 09:26:19 AM »
You also shouldn't have to restrict your movements.  So, if you want to watch TV in the living room and the roommate's guest is on the couch?  Jiggle her awake and tell her to go back to your roommate's bedroom, then sit down on the couch and turn on the TV. 

TootsNYC

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2014, 09:42:14 AM »
I would focus on the smoking and asthma part. That's serious.

As for not leaving, bcs you consider your roommate's girlfriend a stranger?

I think that's over the top. Especially since your roommate is the lease-holder. She's not a stranger; she's someone your roommate knows. I think she's entitled to say, "this person that I know is OK to stay in my home when I'm not there.


   If this bothers you, insist on getting a locking knob for your room, so you can be sure your stuff is secure, and *so that none of her guests can be falsely accused*.

Otherwise, I consider this to be relatively normal use of one's home.

Maybe the sleeping on the sofa is out of line, since there *is* an air mattress.

JoieGirl7

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2014, 10:00:09 AM »
I think it would be reasonable to ask that your roommate be present when any of her guests are in the apartment; that no one sleeps in the shared space; and that if the girlfriend is there 3 days a week or more, she needs to pitch in on the rent and utilities, especially if she is using the apartment without your roommate present.


Celany

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2014, 10:06:38 AM »
So, you have only about 8 weeks left?

I don't think you'd be wise to make a fuss, honestly.  Just hole up in your room when you're home and move out as soon as the lease is up.  Take it as a life-lesson.  You know what you did wrong now, by not discussing and laying out clear house rules.

IMO, generally, people are better off living in a smaller or not-as-nice place that they can afford alone than with any kind of roommate.  That's the way I've always done it.  I've never shared accommodation with anybody and I've seen plenty of good friendships and even family relationships fall apart when people try to live together.  IMO, it's not worth it.

I disagree, I formed a lot of my adult friendships through house shares.  Yes, there are friends I wouldn't live with again, and there were definitely times where the living arrangements had to change for the sake of the friendship surviving, but there are so many wonderful memories that form when living with somebody, it can be a great communal experience.

I've had both. I've roomed with a near-stranger, ended up living there for two years, and we're still friends seventeen years later. I've roomed with friends and had it kill the friendship. I feel like I've actually had more luck starting out with people I didn't know well--maybe it made us more considerate of each other, and friendship developed. Rooming with people I was already friends with, maybe we presumed too much on each other, made too many assumptions. Or my memory might even be faulty, I'm not sure.

I've also lived with roommates for years and I've been offering at least one bedroom in my apartment for the past 5 years on AirBnB. I've met some of the most amazing people through AirBnB and roommates. And in the 15 or so years that I've lived with other people, I think it's gone wrong 3 times. All 3 times, I can pretty safely say that the friendship would have fallen apart eventually anyways; living together just make it happen a bit faster & messier. But not having to deal with those 3 situations in exchange for not having 15 years of mostly amazing experiences...totally not an exchange I'd be willing to make.

As for the OP - you moved in with your friend, right? You're not the primary lease-holder on the apartment?

Honestly, her behavior sounds very normal to me & not like she's taking advantage of you. However, it sounds like you have very different ideas of what you expect in a living situation. Have you lived with roommates much? It could be that you're not someone who does well living with other people OR, you'd do well with people who have ideas about living together that are closer to yours. You've said that you really don't like having people over - did you make that clear to her before you moved in? Did you also make it clear to her that you don't let people who you don't know stay in your place alone, & make it clear to her that it needs to be *her* responsibility to stay with them?

About the asthma - did you disclose to her how severe it was when you moved in? If someone has severe enough asthma that being around a smoker who recently smoked would set them off, I would be annoyed that my new roomie didn't disclose that to me up front. However, if you *did* tell her, and she was fine with it, then she *should* be being more proactive about making it clear to her friends, girlfriends that smoke that you *do* have this issue, and she has decided to accommodate you on it.

Overall, I'd say that if you're going to have roommates, you'd really benefit from having a much more in-depth conversation about expectations than you did. And put it in writing! When I have had friction with roommates about people coming over, we hammered out a reasonable agreement (and it is reasonable of you to want to have a conversation about this that involves both of you compromising on what you want) and then one of us sent an email to the others, so that we all it in writing & there would be no future confusion about the rules (pertinent to your situation, one of my previous roommates *really* hated having people over, so we made a rule that we could only invite people over if we gave him notice that people were coming. If I was having people over, I'd shoot him an email about it as soon as I made a date to have people over. If it was spontaneous, I'd still shoot him a text letting him know as soon as I knew & giving him at least an hour's notice. In the end, living together didn't work out for us, because what we wanted was too different, but we parted on excellent terms because we talked everything out civilly.).
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Margo

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Re: Roomate Having Several Guests Over
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2014, 11:08:57 AM »
I think you need to sit down with her to discuss it.

From what you say, it sounds as though things have changed a good bit from what you agreed to when you moved in, so it is reasonable to raise this with a view to agreeing new arrangements.

For me personally, I would see it as reasonable to ask that no-one sleeps in the common areas without prior agreement, that no-one (other than roomie's girlfriend) is left in the flat alone without prior agreement,  and that you agree together on how frequently people can stay over.

The smoking thing - as an asthmatic myself, my experience is that the extent to which being around someone who smokes affects me varies a lot - it has to do with how heavy a smoker they are, how recently they have had a cigarette, how large / well aired the room is, even down to their hair and clothing as this makes a big difference, not to mention my own state of health at the time they happen to be visiting . I would absolutely make  any room mate aware that I was asthmatic and that I needed to be in a non-smoking house.  but I would then expect to discuss on a case by case basis if there was someone who caused problems for me - it seems as though a big issue here is that it is the girlfriend who smokes, so it has much more of an impact than if it were a casual visitor who was only there for a couple of hours, one evening. 

I'd try to reach a compromise - visitors limited to 3 nights a week, for instance (except with prior agreement)

The puking in a bucket thing is unpleasant but I am not sure how you could enforce a rule like that. I presume that someone was either taken ill, or had been drinking - either way, it may not have been something which roomie could have known in advance. Are there 2 bathrooms? If so, i agree that it would be reasonable to ask that any guest who is taken ill uses roomie's bathroom rather than a bucket, but unless you have ongoing issues with her having guests back who are, or who get drunk, I would be inclined to assume that this was a one-off, and not make it a big deal,.