I have this roommate. My roommate has this girlfriend. Sort of.
Even though money is tight and we can barely feed ourselves and stay ahead of the bills, over the last few months my roommate has let his sort-of girlfriend move into the house, bringing all of her stuff with her, and taking over a bedroom my roommate could have rented-out for at least $300 or $400 per month.
My roommate is not being "a nice guy." He Wants Something from this sort-of relationship. And he's not getting it. She won't sleep with him. She always has some kind of lame excuse.
She doesn't pay rent. She doesn't have a job. She's technically homeless. She gets food-stamp money every month, and spends it at the nearest grocery store ... but she also has five little nieces and nephews that live nearby, and most of the food ends up going to them. And my roommate has to go pick them up when she wants to see them.
When she cooks, it's for the kids. She never cleans up after herself, no matter how big the mess. She won't do dishes.
When she's in the house, she always has the TV blaring -- even when she's asleep. A couple days back she noticed some of the old record albums I have stashed in my room -- Aretha, Al Green, THE MOTOWN STORY. "There's some great old stuff here," she said. "You should play some of it."
"I would," I said, "if you'd ever turn the TV off."
She can be drunk by 11 a.m. She can go through a bottle of wine or vodka in a day, easy -- and start looking around for more. And when she gets a good buzz on, she won't shut up.
When she's really hungover, she spends all day in her room and never makes a sound.
She sometimes creeps around the house like a drug addict, sneaking in and out so no one can ever tell when she leaves or returns. Sometimes she leaves the TV turned up to cover the sound of her sneaking out. Sometimes she leaves just before my roommate gets home from work -- maybe so she won't have to deal with him...?
She's stolen money from my roommate three times. Last winter, a $1,000 electrical generator was stolen out of the back yard when she was the only person in the house -- she claims she never heard a thing. For awhile, I was constantly carrying my laptop and checkbook with me, because I don't trust her. I'm still carrying the laptop -- it's too easy to grab and go pawn-off.
My roommate has threatened to leave all of her stuff out on the front porch, has threatened to haul all her belongings to the dump. He wants her to go back to school, get her GED, go to college.
She'd rather stay home, get drunk, and stare at the TV.
My roommate drinks too, and when they're both drunk, it's something to see. She'll call his name every few minutes about something, and he'll snap at her. When he's REALLY hammered he calls her every name in the book. They can sit on the couch for hours sniping at each other.
She's never around on weekends, because she's out partying with someone else, people we don't know about and have never met.
She's young enough to be his daughter.
What I want to know is What does he get from this "relationship."
When he's drunk, my roommate can talk for HOURS about all the people in his life who have screwed him -- from his parents and his family to his co-workers to his roommates. EVERYBODY'S out to screw him over.
And he must have a real martyr complex, because he's setting himself up to be screwed again.
When I ask what he gets from her, all he says is "It's better than being alone."
No. There are lots of things that are worse than being alone. One of them is being stuck with someone who doesn't love you, doesn't care about you, doesn't respect you.
I've told my roommate he's being used, and he just blows it off. He's in denial. Unless he's really drunk, and then it comes out in the ugliest possible ways. He knows what's going on....
When they get after each other, I usually go hide in my room and try to ignore them. Sometimes it's like they want me there to play referee. I won't do it. They argue anyway, and sometimes I don't get much sleep.
But there's been no violence, so far. Lots of yelling and abuse, but no violence.
Everybody has issues, but Jesus. After seeing these two go at it, I'm surprised anyone ever gets close to anybody, anymore. Do they think this crap is "Normal"?
What do women want? What do men want?
It's hard enough trying to figure out what I want.