I applied and got accepted for a 5 months job in a new country. A lot of people applied but 6 got chosen and we were all going to share the same flat. I was optimistic about it all. I am the type that likes my comfort (I will give anything to be comfy…) and I love my personal space. I met the others and we all helped each other get acquainted to the new city during the first weekend. We could clearly notice that there were already groups forming (2 groups of 3). The whole group was made up of 5 girls and 1 guy. Not even up to one month later, we had some serious roommate issues that got to the attention of our director and they were trying to find the best solution to the issue. Under our contract, we were not allowed to move outside of the University hosting us so the options were:
- Move to another flat (who wants to do that after settling and making the small space feel like home)
- Be grown ups and resolve it
By this time, the groups became blurry. There was still clearly a group of 3 (but now it was a different group of 3) and a group of 2 (myself and a friend I will call Nini) and then there was that one person who was not sure where she stands. My friend Nini found a room off campus and moved out (this girl no dey understand rules). The problem got resolved on face level but let’s just say people clearly were not speaking to each other.
Nini, on the other hand, was loving her new place and her roommates. She lived in a house with 2 guys, a girl and a couple. I visited her a couple of times and let’s just say her roommates were not people I saw myself being friends with. Due to this, my visits became non-existent. We still spent a lot of time together at lunch breaks, traveling or catching up on weekends. This is when she told me she got home one night late and she did “the do” with one of her roommates and it has been awkward since then. I instantly told her that it was a bad idea. I don’t think she liked that but my mouth tooooooo dey sharp sometimes. The conversation went something like this:
Me: “so what happened after that?”
Nini: “well, it has been weird since then.”
Me: “what do you want to happen?”
Nini: “I need to tell him that it was just a one time thing and….”
Me: (I just jumped to solution) “well you need to sit down and have a grown conversation with him that it was a one time thing and it won’t happen again. Clear the air with him.”
After that we did not spend much time together anymore apart from lunch breaks. Then one day after class, we decided to catch up and that is when she told me “we have been knacking like every night”. I just rolled my eyes. I knew there was a reason why she has been avoiding spending time with me. Why couldn’t she just tell me? Oh! I know why. I already opened my mouth and gave my opinion.
The next Friday we had dinner, finished a bottle of Tequila and went out dancing. The next morning she called me to check on me and after 5 minutes on the phone I asked “but why are you whispering?”. Her statement started with “mmm because my boyfriend…..” Boyfriend ko? Roommate ni? Since when?
She explained that after our drunken escapade, she went home and after the usual knacking, they became official. At this point I went to supportive friend mode. I said something like “aaaaawwww that’s good. I just think that dating a roommate is not such a good idea because that’s your space and it might become irritating if you can’t go home because you need your space or you can’t do anything else because you are constantly spending time together. Just make sure you are still the spontaneous and outgoing Nini.”
That was the last night we spent time together outside of work. Recently she came to talk to me at work. She did not seem herself so I asked her what was wrong. She started by apologizing for not being a good friend. I did not understand the need for the apology. I mean we have had some failed plans but that was on both of our parts. But her apology became more clear when she explained what has been happening.
“He is obsessed with me. I can’t do anything anymore. I don’t even talk to my friends or family because he is always around me. Even when I go to the bathroom he will seat by the steps and talk to me. It’s like I am being watched 24/7. I don’t know what to do. It wasn’t like this before.”
But it was.
The thing is, Nini thought it was cute at the beginning stage and now the same thing she found cute is completely turning her off (and that is exactly what I told her). When they were in the first few weeks of dating, she would always call him and ask for “permission” before she went anywhere. Most of the time he said, ‘no’- he was on his way home so she would end up just going home. She let him take that role and now she hates that about him. He has made somewhat anti-social in less than 3 months of dating (well she let him). She comes to work, then goes straight home. On weekends she only goes places that he takes her to and he does not care if it interests her or not (these are her complaints).
But this is what I wanted her to avoid. You can move in with a boyfriend after dating for a while, but I don’t think deciding to date a roommate is a good idea. As in her case, it seems you have to account your every move, phone calls and lateness. Who wants to do that and the person is not even paying my rent (even if)? In this case, it’s also a matter of what you allow. Maybe the girl is just flexing in front of me and deep down that’s what she is actually doing to him. I am not sure but I still strongly believe that it’s just not a good idea to get into a relationship with a roommate.
What are your thoughts?
Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Orangeline