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Seriously, how do you live with people?

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really trying posted 2/19/2014 23:29 PM

My mom passed away 2 years ago and I've lived in her house with my adult son since. The house is left to my brother and I.

He and his wife moved in a month ago, saying he wants to save money. We are going to revisit the situation in 2 years. Don't ask me why 2 years, but that's the time frame.

I'M GOING CRAZY! I feel like I'm in a fish bowl, and whether they intended to or not, they have taken over the house! I'm stuck in my room, although I know it's my choice but the way things are, it's not comfortable for me to be out of my room.

I don't know. We're going to have a meeting on Sunday morning to go over things. I have a few items to bring to the table but wonder if they are all worth mentioning. Maybe I need to chill out.

Can you guys suggest any boundaries that are usually discussed with roommates? We discussed nothing in advance.

Thanks for any ideas.

Oh, my things are for them to turn off the damn lights around here (I constantly turn off the lights after them) and quit closing the back door so hard when they go in and out (which they do often because they smoke, BBQ, etc.) and to stop slamming the door when they fight.

I'd like to bring up distributing the mail, quit smoking in the garage so when my son goes to work out later, it doesn't wreak of smoke.

We finally talked about the frig situation because I said something passive/aggressive and it blew up but the end result was that it was talked about. I told them to rearrange the cupboards in the kitchen to their liking and they did.

I would love to sell the house and move on but he's not willing to do that and on the other hand, I'd like my brother to have the same opportunity I had in living here.

All suggestions welcomed


Dreamboat posted 2/20/2014 07:18 AM

In the meeting bring up your points.

With the lights, explain that you are trying to keep the electric bill down. See if there is a reason they leave the lights on (i.e., they do not want to trip in the dark) and try to find a compromise. Or they just might now think about it and just need that pointed out.

With the back door, I bet they don't even realize how hard it closes and that you can hear it in your room. Mention it and I bet they become more careful.

Tell them flat out that you do not want to be involved in their disputes and therefore announcing a fight by slamming a door is NOT appropriate.

Is there a reason they smoke in the garage rather than outside? Explain to them that your DS is trying to be healthy and working out in second hand smoke is definitely not healthy.

YOu should probably go over expectation for keeping common areas neat and clean, like no dishes left in the sink, no cups left in the living room, no dirty towels left on the bathroom floor, etc.

Good luck!

Williesmom posted 2/20/2014 08:07 AM

Sell the house. They can take their half and buy something that they can live in to their liking.

Look at it this way: if you only had 2 more years to live, would you want them to be like this?

really trying posted 2/20/2014 17:38 PM

thanks Dreamy.

I don't come across very well and I'm trying to learn better communication skills.

I guess out of everything that bothers me, it's the lights and the back door/fighting. And I think I can communicate that to them in a healthy way.

What I'd like to hear from them is..."What do you think about this... How about if we do this..."

I've brought up before how we've all raised kids, run a household, been the alpha in the home and that we don't need to do any of that here and they agrees but yet I feel like they're the parents and I'm the kid. They just do what they want!!!!

I wonder what's on their list

jemimapd posted 2/20/2014 19:18 PM

This can only get worse. Living with other people always does.

Please go and see an attorney and see what you can do about selling the house!

really trying posted 2/20/2014 19:54 PM

I know I can force the sale of the home but I'd rather not.


I'd love to know how people live happily with roommates.

I think the answer is for me to move out.

StillGoing posted 2/20/2014 21:43 PM

Replace all her eyeliner with printer toner.

Want2help posted 2/20/2014 21:48 PM

I'm sorry, I can't do it. my adult brother just moved in with us to save money for his move across state (which was cancelled).

We lasted less than a week.

really trying posted 2/20/2014 21:56 PM

want, we had words within a week too. Sorry your situation didn't work out. Did you guys try to set some rules/boundaries before hand?

We never talked about anything before hand, I guess we figured it would fall into place. UGH!

Nature_Girl posted 2/20/2014 22:28 PM

I cannot stand to live with people. I've only had a handful of roommates and it was always a nightmare. I love my children, I do love living with them. But another adult? I abhor it.

Whalers11 posted 2/21/2014 06:13 AM

I don't do well living with other people at all - whether it's family, roommate, SO... not for me!!

cvs2kkids posted 2/21/2014 07:44 AM

I know I can force the sale of the home but I'd rather not.

I'd love to know how people live happily with roommates.

I think the answer is for me to move out

2 families together are really hard. Due to an ice storm that cut off power in our area, had to live with my brothers family for just a week. They were great, no issues and treated us like guests, my wife despised it.

I would force the sale or have one of you buy the other out. If you move out, that 2 years would turn into forever. And if they D or S, you're royally screwed.

The sale of the house should provide the equivalent of 2 years mortgage or rent payments for your brother.

Undefinabl3 posted 2/21/2014 11:28 AM

I'd love to know how people live happily with roommates.

Really Trying - so, basically you just need to go back to step one.

Make House Rules. Period.

The bottom line is is that the house is EVERYONE's so really, no body gets to just rule the roost.

Make a list of common chores and other daily rules (ie slamming doors) and set bounderies. I am sure that you do things that they don't like, so be prepared to also make some changes.

While i think that your talking points are good, try to take it all the way back to 1. by suggesting that as a group you come up with house rules.

You will HAVE to compromise. Like - it's butt cold outside so they smoke in the garage. you telling them they can't will.not.fly. So, if there is a way for them to crack the garage door so fresh air comes in while they smoke and a little after? Or, they can buy a thingy that sucks up the smoke and neutralizes it (my grama had one, worked great actually).

The back door just needs to be fixed, and possibly add some weather stripping around it so that when it closes its not so loud.

Oh, my things are for them to turn off the damn lights around here

So a couple of things...

1. If the rooms are used alot, suggest a timer for lights. That way they will turn on at like 6pm, and then off again at say - 11pm.

2. If the rooms are used but can stay empty for hours (like a bathroom or laundry room, basement area, bedroom) then you could get some motion sensor switches that will automatically turn off after 20 minutes. Say they forgot to turn the light off in the kitchen on their way to work - house is empty all day.....so, the automatic switch just shuts off.

They can run you from 20-30 bucks at your big box stores.

I also think that you staying your room all the time is giving your brother and his wife the idea that its now theirs to use as they like.

Deeply Scared posted 2/21/2014 11:37 AM

(((RT)))

I'm sorry you're in such a stressful situation.

I think having your meeting on Sunday is a good start. Have your concerns laid out and ready to talk about. I think living together is doo-able but solid ground rules need to be in place...it's a community home between all of you and you should not feel like you have to isolate yourself in your room.

Stay strong!!

really trying posted 2/21/2014 16:02 PM

thank you both, good suggestions and encouragement and I need both of those.

Yes, I'm sure they have a list on me.

It's all just too much for me, I'd like to work it out, obviously, and every day I pump myself to walk through that door, that we can do this.

The other thing I was thinking is that this is a good time to get my butt out of the house. I could go back to school, take classes, second job, volunteering...anything.

So that's what I'm thinking about doing.

I am getting nervous for Sunday though.

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