Dear HelloGigglers, please excuse my absence for the last couple of weeks. I have been moving home – from a flatshare with a friend to a new place with my boyfriend. Bit scary, isn’t it? Anyway, the move went reasonably well but only thanks to my (and a bit of his) super-organisation and to dedicating all my time and energy to getting ready. (I just found this article on The Real Girl’s Guide to Moving Out of Your Apartment - I wish I’d read it before I moved!)
I’ve been doing lots of thinking about all the houseshares I’ve lived in, and all the roommates I’ve had. This has been triggered by the move, heightened by the recent HelloGiggles Roommate edition live show and also because I recently attended the (lovely) wedding an old Uni housemate. Sometimes living with flatmates works out, i.e. when you attend their wedding ten years later, and sometimes it doesn’t. God knows I’ve had both types over the years.
Please let me know if you identify with any of the below – and if I’ve missed any off the list!
The best friend
Moving in with your best friend can make or break a relationship. I’ve never done it, but I’ve seen it go well – and badly.
Maybe when you move in with your best friend you’ll sit and drink coffee in your nighties in the kitchen, like the girls in the photo. Maybe it’ll be all late night chats and fun times. Or perhaps you’ll discover all his/her bad habits and row a lot. I suppose it’s a bit like getting a job at your friend’s work – best not done unless you are *really* confident in how well you already know them.
The wannabe best friend
This situation is a bit awkward. She/he’s the one you moved in with because you just had to move into a house share but who you just don’t have time to be friends with. It’s no offence to them – in other circumstances you could have become good mates – but you already double-book yourself every Friday night so there’s no time for a cosy roommate night in with her.
Obviously, the opposite of above and, oh my, I’ve lived with this girl before. She was lovely, kind, clever and funny – and had no interest at all in being my friend. Not in a way that was particularly offensive or that made me lose confidence in myself – she just had more going on than I did at the time. It took me a while of dancing around her, sending myself flowers and chocolates before I realised she just wasn’t interested. And until I realised I wasn’t Cher trying to snag a guy in Clueless.
The recluse is sort of the best type of housemate, but can also be the worst. Generally it’s fine, but sometimes you realise you haven’t seen them for a week and you wonder whether you should knock on their door to check they are okay. You spend your time 70% happy to have the peace and quiet, 30% worried about them enough not to be able to enjoy the quiet life.
The socialite is rarely home. When they are there, they have a stream of guests in tow. It’s pretty much okay – you mostly get the living room to yourself – but sometimes can quite lonely. Suppose this one depends on your reason for living in a house share in the first place.
The roommate with the live-in partner
Pretty much always a bad thing, but can be fine if they pull their weight and/or chip in for bills…shame this only happens about 10% of the time. When I’ve been in the role of the semi-live-in partner (my boyfriend’s old place was in a much better location for, like, my life), I’ve tried to do more than mine & his share of cleaning, bought beer and milk as much as possible, and made the other guys brownies and sausage rolls at regular intervals. I hope that helped them not resent me. Now I come to write it down, I feel like I should have done more – which goes to show how much this situation can be hard on all involved!
The intellectual fills their room with books and shames you into changing the channel when they walk in during Neighbours. They always want to talk about current events and make you realise that buying the paper every day in order to do the (quick) crossword does not automatically make you smart.
Flatmate on a short fuse
This flat mate is generally fine to live with, but just, well, grumpy. She or he can usually not even speak within the first hour of getting home, and you absolutely could never suggest that they should pitch in more for milk and loo roll.
Moving in with your partner is always a good thing…or, well, that’s what I need to believe right now, as that’s what I’ve just done. Eek!
Image via Shutterstock.