“Its really hard to be roommates with people if your suitcases are much better than theirs.”~ J. D. Salinger
For those of us who feel the necessity for a roommate, whether it is for reasons of trying to save money and cut down on the cost of living, or maybe getting a little extra help on outrageous rent, or if it is for the purposes to feed the need for socialization and not feeling alone, selecting a roommate should be a very selective and tedious process. Especially if it is you who is head of household.
One has got to do their homework and yes, even research people whom they might think be potential roommates, because you never truly know what you are going to get.
Throughout my stay on the farm this past week, I’ve seen first hand how important and just how true this really is. I entered into a house out in the middle of nowhere, that already had four people occupying it.
I will attempt to break this down:
- head of household
- cousin to head of household
- boyfriend to cousin
- personal attendant to head of household
So in a sense, you have three that could be considered as “family” and one other. The head of household is a disabled person and a veteran and was in need of help. But deep down, I believe that not only did he need the help, but he needed the social interaction in his life. So when he hired the personal attendant to come live in the house, rent free… he also invited his cousin and her boyfriend to come help out as well.
The problem was that the head of household didn’t tell each individual that the other was coming. And they all lived in one house. It probably lasted less than two months in total.
I had been communicating with both the head, and with the personal attendant prior to my visit to the farm. The personal attendant kept swearing up and down that the house was a miserable place to be, and that she was lonely. The head of household kept trying to get me to come back for another visit, but I had a terrible and boring experience back in April and that just lasted a weekend.
Nonetheless, I foolishly went back. Started to have a better time just hanging out and doing whatever. But the personal attendant was not all that she had made herself up to be, and the situation inside the house was a powder keg, ready to explode.
But I took an entirely neutral stance on the situation. Whenever things were showing signs of getting heated a little bit, I got out of the way. None of this was my fight in any way.
It seemed a bit crazy in there. The boyfriend and girlfriend I thought were rather loud in the house. I thought that perhaps a little volume adjustment in their voices would behoove them, and things would become easier for everyone. They were in their early 20’s. Kids, basically.
The personal attendant though, in her mid-40’s, was a complete and totally different story. A story of talking like one person, but behaving like another.
For a couple of days though the couple was gone out of the house. It was just the three of us for a while. It seemed more relaxed. The couple were the youngest ones in the house and it had seemed like the atmosphere had changed to a more adult and mature thing.
But what I was missing from the very beginning was the fact that the personal attendant would stay hidden and holed away in her bedroom while the couple was there. Once they were gone, she emerged. (And she said she was lonely?)
While they were gone, the three of us drove into town and went to the grocery store. There was this issue about who was paying for what and who had what money and these sorts of things. I had been told by head of household that I would NOT be expected to pay for anything because I was a guest in his house. So I intentionally left my wallet at home. So the debate of who was going to be paying for food was between the two of them.
Eventually, that got settled as the attendant took care of the grocery bill herself.
Yet throughout the entire time that she and I were by ourselves in the aisles, she would complain about the other two. How dirty they were, how they didn’t do anything to help, how lazy they were, and so on. But I DID notice that she wouldn’t say anything to the head of household, who was essentially– her boss.
I honestly couldn’t see her point of view. How was it “miserable”? She was laughing and having fun and everything in between… as long as the kids weren’t there. But once they showed up, she took refuge back into her bedroom. And honestly, I tell you, she did not come out unless she was called for by the head of household. Not even for meals would she come out to the table to eat. She had always given some excuse as to why she would not join the rest of us.
So allow me to continue. While at the grocery store, she bought FOR HERSELF, a can of pineapples. This is something that she wanted for herself. She didn’t want anyone else to have it. I heard it, the other guy heard it.
The biggest key factor was that the couple didn’t hear it because they were not there.
The very next day, that can of fruit that only cost 79¢ ignited the powder keg. Fueled by the fact that the three of them were drinking heavily that evening.
They had taken the can and blended the pineapple into a wild cocktail. Then the head of household went knocking on the attendant’s bedroom door to offer her a drink that had her pineapple in it.
I was in the next bedroom online, and checking messages, when all of a sudden the personal attendant came up from behind me and started whispering in total anger. Her face turning red as she tried to keep the volume of her voice down low enough so that the “others” couldn’t hear.
Something was said. The shouting began. And I knew it was coming. I tried to hang on and ignore it but there was really nowhere to go to avoid what was brewing.
A few more times the attendant would storm into the next bedroom where I was on the computer and just start bitching and moaning. The others noticed this. The cousin finally called her out, drunk as a skunk.
Let me also add that every single day that I was there, whenever I was in a situation where it was just myself and the attendant alone in a room or space, she would complain about the others, mainly the couple. Always complaining about the same things repeatedly.
My answers finally were “Go talk to your boss.”, she did NOT heed my advice, at all. She kept coming back with “He won’t listen to me. But he’ll listen to you because you’re his buddy.”
I never really saw her TRY. Whenever she had some kind of worry or complaint, she came to me. I was not there to be anyone’s ombudsman or referee.
Now the cousin kept getting louder and louder, and more vulgar towards the attendant. The attendant actually never did fire back that I recall. She just decided to keep coming into the bedroom where I was and talk to me. I didn’t care for it because my back was towards the door and I couldn’t “see” her coming. The door didn’t have a lock either so I couldn’t gain that privacy that way.
Eventually the head of household came down the hallway and I expressed that I was not appreciating her barging in on me like she was. That she needed to talk to him. So he was the one that made that move first, instead of her.
She shouted out, “I want my money that I am owed for being here, and I’m gone. I’m outta here. I’m done.” Well, there was no arguing that she had made up her mind. She had said it loud enough for everyone in the house to understand her. Then she finally took off in her vehicle and went some place. Nobody knows where.
She stumbled back into the house later around 3:00 AM. We heard the door open. Actually, the house has a pretty nifty security alarm system that beeped whenever ANY door that led to the outside was opened. You couldn’t get away from it.
I ignored her as I played video games with the others. I finally went to bed closer to 4:00 AM, exhausted… stressed out… and nervous. And it proved that I had every right to be.
I laid down on the couch where I was sleeping in the back living room. There was NO privacy at all there. Anyone in the house could walk through there. I would eventually open my eyes momentarily and there stood the personal attendant, next to the bed hovering over me. Scaring me to death!
She then climbed into bed with me. She again took another opportunity to whine and complain and I kept telling her “Talk to your boss!!”. Over and over again.
Then she was pissed off because I would not allow her to stay in bed with me. It was already 6:00 AM at that point when I told her to leave. I heard her say as she walked away, “I guess nobody wants to be around me.”
Well ummm.. no, not really. Not with you acting like this. Not with you just standing there over me while I sleep and then also climbing into bed while I am sleep, uninvited. Plus, I don’t know who you are!!
This was all done probably was because the night before, I was sleeping soundly and I woke up to roll over and she was right there in bed with me… snoring.
From the six nights that I stayed in the house, she crawled into bed with me while I slept four nights. And everytime- uninvited.
How terrifying to have someone standing over you, waiting for you to wake up while you are sleeping in the middle of the night!!!
By the time this fight had escalated to the level it had, all I kept saying to myself was “one more night…. just one more night.”
The fighting continued Friday night as during that day, everyone but the attendant went into town. The head of household got a money order for the attendant for the amount that she was told the VA was willing to pay her. Wrote “Final Check” on it and had given her five days to leave.
She didn’t want to leave. She kept saying that she was saying it because she was mad. But the head of household took her serious when she said she was done. So he gave her a money order. Got gas for her vehicle too so she could make it into town to fill up.
But she really didn’t want to leave. Again, she slipped into my bed to wake me up and complain about this, when she should have complained about it to someone else. She vowed that she would “fix everyone in the house”.
The guy’s parents (my neighbors) were coming and I would return home with them. That was supposed to be Friday morning. They didn’t show up. Instead, they arrived Saturday morning. But I thought that I would have that buffer to get away from her while this guy’s parents were there.
For the most part, she stayed in her bedroom on Saturday. Not all day, but most of it. I took advantage of the fact that she was holed up in her bedroom and took a nap. She had stolen so many hours of sleep from me those nights just keeping me awake so she could complain.
Around 3:00 PM, I heard thunder. Actual thunder. I stirred in bed and then I heard the rain just pouring!! And because the entire state is in such a drought… I ran outside and sat in it. Yeah, I probably could have gotten sick but I obviously didn’t think about that.
I was just enjoying it so much because I had not seen it in so long that I went out into a field and stripped down naked. Yep. B A R E – A S S E D N A K E D ! ! !
(Some of my blog subscribers are probably blushing right now. And a few others are probably attempting to get a mental picture. You’re welcome!)
It rained for a while. A couple of hours I would say, it would let up but kept raining. We all had noticed that the attendant had left. She didn’t say a word to anyone. Just left. And by that point, truth be told that nobody cared or mentioned it or questioned it either.
By 11:00 PM, my neighbors had gone to bed. The cousin was sleeping. The head of household and the boyfriend to the cousin were outside on “an armadillo and snake hunt”.
I was at the kitchen table using a laptop. Then I heard a knock. The doors were locked for the night and it was the attendant. So, I let her in. She then began to tell me this tale about how the father had sexually assaulted her in her bedroom.
PRETTY SERIOUS ACCUSATION.
She said she was scared to even be in the same house as the man. But then I thought about this:
- There are two steps that are built in a corner to gain entry to her bedroom.
- The details of her story of where it happened exactly kept switching from the desk in her bedroom and the closet in the back of the room.
- The man she was accusing of doing this to her, is in his mid-60’s and needs the use of a walker for mobility and his health is fading pretty quickly, especially this past year.
- The time of day in which this had happened, everyone was in the house but she said that nobody else was in the house.
How could he have gotten up those stairs without being detected? He’s pretty slow. WHY then didn’t she scream when he came after her?
Never made much sense. Until I remembered that night of the fight where she “promised to fix everyone”.
Whether it was a plan for her to really cause a stir and try to divide one against the other, or it was actually TRUE that it had happened, I took it upon myself to go outside and tell the head of household that she was accusing his father of this action.
It was over. The guy went back into the house, around 12:00 AM and knocked on her bedroom door as she was sitting there like she had been for days and nights. He started to scream “GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY HOUSE!”.
She looked at him like she didn’t know why he was screaming. She reminded him that he had said she had a few days to get out. But he changed his mind because of this accusation. He kept screaming “GET YOUR SHIT AND GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY HOUSE!!”.
It woke up a lot of people. Then he went into the bedroom in which his own parents were asleep and informed them that she was accusing the father of this action.
The argument between head of household and attendant didn’t transpire for much longer as she left the house. When she did, he called the law enforcement and had them send out a county Constable.
Naturally it took him a while to get out there. But by the time the Constable arrived, she had returned to the house with a neighbor from down the road and dragged him into this situation. She even lied to him about WHY he was there in the first place.
She began to gather her things and move it out to her vehicle. One piece at a time. Nobody helped her. The Constable ended up speaking to the head of household, the unsuspecting neighbor, the attendant, the father who was verbally being accused, and me!
Actually, I was the second person he spoke to. And I told him what had been happening since the moment I walked in the door that Monday evening. The roommates simply could not get along was the meat and potatoes of the entire situation. And I spoke of the creepy things that she was doing, like standing over me in bed.
The last two people that the Constable spoke to was her and then the father. But then the Constable called for me again. And I thought that she was going to try and drag me down as well. Scared me to death. But he only asked me what happened during a situation at lunch, which was nothing compared to what was going on already.
Finally, the Constable assisted her in removing her things from the house. He followed her out. I saw and read the copy of the report. She signed it and it said that she understood she was never to return back to the property. If she did, she could be charged with criminal trespass and in this state, that means that she could spend up to 1 year in jail and/or pay a $4,000 fine.
I was home the next afternoon.
This totally long and lengthy story should serve as a warning for those who have potentially put themselves in a situation where roommates do not get along with one another. Always be sure to check out the people whom you are considering as a roommate. Find out more about them before you commit to it. Never allow yourself to be uncomfortable where you live. Especially if it is YOU who are the head of the household. And even if you are not, do not allow yourself to be bulldozed by those who are. Make sure you can get along peacefully with one another. Do not be ashamed or scared to actually do a search on them prior to giving them a set of keys. Find out if they have a past and it will save you so much grief in the long run.
I was no referee to anyone. But I sure was an eyewitness to everything.