View Full Version : Asking someone to move out, please help!

12-27-2011, 10:34 PM
Hi :fishy

I'm not sure if this post belongs in this forum or the Indie forum, but it's definitely related to my general interpersonal skill issues..so it's "relational"

I am in graduate school and have lived in the same apartment for several years. This past summer was the first time I had to get a roommate I did not know previously (had been living with a friend before).

Per my usual perspective I figured that my feelings of the situation not working out was/is "my fault" (I'm too picky, I'm not nice enough, I don't have enough tolerance, I'm basically no good).

BUT, I cannot tolerate this situation anymore and here are a couple of reasons:
:bounce Lack of boundaries (emotional and physical) comes in my room without asking, tells me details of her life I don't want to know, tells me she feels depressed or suicidal, she hates her life, she hates her job, knocks on my door at night because of nightmares
:bounce I am no longer leaving my room (avoid kitchen, living room, even the bathroom for as long as I can!) so that I don't have to talk to her. I avoid coming home until late late at night so I don't run into her
:bounce She's got some serious mood issues, and while I really feel for her, I do clinical work for graduate school, and I cannot do it at home too. It's just too much. It's too much!
:bounce I've asked her not to talk about weight/food before, and she continues. Constantly. She says she's f*t, she wants me to do weekly weigh-ins for her (I said no! go me!), etc.
:bounce Because of her depression she doesn't pay bills on time, forgets to clean up cat vomit (her cats, I step in it), doesn't clean regularly
:bounce Her comments about how often I work, that I'm not around enough, or that i'm not listening to her, make me hate myself. I feel so guilty.

Even with these reasons I still think I'm a horrible person for wanting her to leave. But I have some blessing of an opportunity with a friend, I've known for about a year and half, who needs a place to live in early Feb. I want to ask this roommate to leave the apartment. We're both on the lease, so technically I cannot force her to move out. Worst case scenario though, I would move out, and live with this new person somewhere else. This place has been my home for several years, but I am would leave it.

I have not expressed my distress to my roommate...because I avoid. I avoid conflict at all costs. So I'm definitely at fault. But at this point, I have no interest in trying to make this work. It's been several months, I think she's got significant issues not likely to change anytime soon, and I just cannot do this.

How would you proceed in this situation? Any advice would be so helpful. Please, please.

12-27-2011, 11:17 PM
Hi Tamar,

The way I see it and remember leases and roommate drama, if you're both on the lease, neither one of you really has any power over the other one. How much longer is your lease? If you move, could you find someone to sublease your spot?

To me, if you haven't addressed any of these problems, then you haven't tried to make it work up to now. She might not want to change, but you might be able to set some ground rules as far as chores, getting permission to enter your room, etc., that will make this much more tolerable. To me, it seems like far less hassle to at least try to express your issues than it is to move and find a subleaser to take your spot.

If you don't learn to at least addresss roommate conflicts, then what are you going to do when you move in with someone else, even someone you've known for a long time, and you learn that they have certain habits or flaws that drive you crazy?

12-28-2011, 12:55 AM
Hi agree that learning to address conflict as and when it happens is really important. For every part of our lives.
However, from what you say it does seem unlikely that she is going to turn into a model flatmate.
You obviously can't turn her out unless she agrees to go and you also cant leave unless she agrees to that. And either way you do need to look at the legal repercussions of that. If her name is on the lease then she will still be held liable for what happens in the flat even if she isnt there. That is really tricky.

So I think these are the things you need to consider:
If the agency is open to changing the lease. It may help your cause to tell them that she has problems paying bills on time.
If it is then you need to discuss this with her and see of she is willing to to do either one or the other. If not then you will have to wait until the lease is up.

I would maybe say that even though you care about her as a person the living arrangement is not working for you. That you hope she knows that you dont mean this personally.
She will inevitably ask why and i think you need to tell her but in a tactful way.
That you understand her vulnerabilities as you have some of your own. And unfortunately as a result you cant really cope with both and an intense job. That you are someone that needs a lot of personal space. That different people may be better for both of you.

If she wont move I recommend going over some ground rules and doing so honestly, openly and directly. Sadly people arnt mindreaders.

12-28-2011, 01:20 AM
Thanks for these replies. They are really challenging and make me think...which is good. There are a lot of legal/technical pieces to this that I really need to have thought through and planned out should I move forward.

:hugon bellydancer :hugoff
You make some great points. A lot of which I've thought about frequently in the last couple of months. I have expressed some of my concerns with her, and the truth is I haven't tried to make it work, for me at least. I've tried to make it work for her and I think it has.

Lease is up at the end of the summer. I think I could find someone to sublet, I would work really hard to do so at the very least.

If you don't learn to at least addresss roommate conflicts, then what are you going to do when you move in with someone else, even someone you've known for a long time, and you learn that they have certain habits or flaws that drive you crazy?
This is a great question. And I think my response to it is that if it were just habits or flaws that made me crazy, I could deal. I've had roommates like that, and have had some successful conversations. The part that is so hard for me to handle is the "if you weren't my roommate I'd kill myself" or "I'm so overwhelmed, my life is horrible, I haven't left the apartment in two days." I guess these are quirks, and she's aware that it overwhelms me (at least she professes to be), and it still doesn't stop.

I think a lot of what I'm mulling over is that, I can tolerate anything. I have for most of my life tolerated whatever was dished out to me. That's what I do. I just take it. Part of me feels like this is saying, nope, not going to tolerate it this time. Living here makes me want to hurt myself, I feel trapped, like I cannot escape and miserable, and responsible for someone else's well-being. Someone I don't even know. The other part of me wonders if this is ultimate avoidance, or some well-devised escape plan that will blow up in my face. I don't think I have enough experience setting boundaries to know the difference.

:hugon dermaline :hugoff
Thank you for your reply as well. You gave me some very helpful information. I hadn't thought about the minute details, and I should probably know those before making any moves (literally or figuratively!)

Also I'm not sure she ever did sign the lease....or anything of the sort. I cannot remember.

I hate this, I hate this, I hate this. I feel like i'm losing my mind. Which is usually a good sign that I need to table this thinking for now. :winky

I can definitely tolerate this until my lease is up. I do not have to do anything to change anything.

Thanks. :love

12-28-2011, 01:35 AM
I would certainly not just take it that you need to tolerate this. It sounds v unhealthy and I have my doubts about how much she can change.
I do think you need to learn to take care of your own needs as you go along - that is really important - but I do think if it was me I would try to get out of this now.

Blackmailing you with suicide - which is essentially what she is doing - is not ok.

First find out whos name is on the lease. If she signed it. And what the agency or landlord is open to. You can do that discreetly and then make your next decision. It may well be dead easy to deal with this.

I dont know if this will interest you or not but I think one can learn from good management techniques with a lot of things.

When managing staff a great way to start is to discuss all possibilities right at the start and preferably put them in writing. No sugar coating or avoiding. After that if things come up one can refer back to the list and that makes it less personal. if flatmates both do this at the start it can avoid a lot of hassles later.
Addressing things early helps as it is then just a small issue rather than leaving it which then results in it being much bigger.

You deserve to take care of you and I am glad you are starting to think of doing so.

12-28-2011, 01:40 AM
:hugon dermaline :hugoff

Thanks. All of those thoughts are helpful. All of them. :happy

I will go to bed (because I'm now starting to panic).
I will call my landlord in the morning.
I will check lease agreements in my state.

I will do all the other normal stuff I have to do tomorrow too.

I'm ok. nothing horrific is going to happen to me. I am ok, I am ok, I am ok.

12-28-2011, 01:48 AM
This is a situation that a lot of people find themselves in and you are not alone. And it may be very easily dealt with.

And you will be ok regardless of what you decide to do.

Take one small step and then work from there.
well done!:yay

12-28-2011, 11:00 PM
Thanks for the support. :love

I did stick up for myself, I sent my email.

She was enraged. I should have expected. She gets angry fast.

I called her. Backtracked, took it all back. She's not angry anymore. I think it was a decent conversation.

I wish I hadn't done it. Because now I'm anxious. But I did do it. I stood up for myself, at least for a little bit. A couple of hours even. :winky

I guess that's some progress.

And then I had a conversation with her...more progress I guess.

12-28-2011, 11:39 PM
Well done to you. :yay

Are you now ok with her and you continuing to live together?

If you are can you sit down with her and the two of you write out a casual set of ground rules? You can wrap it up in a less offensive way by saying that you want the two of you to get along as well as possible and this will help that. That it will safe guard your relationship.?

If she continues to invade your boundaries then what are your next steps?

if you are not actually ok continueing to live with her then what are your plans?

12-29-2011, 09:04 AM

In your email, did you actually ask her to move out, or did you just say that you had some issues that needed to be discussed?

12-31-2011, 03:07 PM
Thanks :fishy for your thoughts and replies.

I do not want to leave my place...I've been their for several years, since the start of my PhD and would like to finish up the last year there, so moving out with a year and a half to go feels, just blech.

She did acknowledge the issues I mentioned in the email, issues she's aware of and mentioned before, but she claims that she can and will change. I just don't see this as likely, as I think she's really struggling and these are more than quirks, but serious issues that will take a lot of work for her to overcome.

In my email I suggested that she move out. I didn't forcefully say "get out" since I do not have that authority, but I did strongly suggest that this would be a good decision for all of us. I talked with a lot of people before I did it, and most of my friends & family were thrilled I was taking this step. It's been just awful. I gave plenty of time, offered to help pay costs, etc. What she got most angry about was that I potentially already had someone to "replace" her.

As soon as I spoke with her, and reassured her, the anger was gone "poof." So when I say I back-pedaled, I mean I basically threw myself under a truck. I'm sorry this, I'm sorry that, I should have thought, I didn't mean to say X.

I feel scared to move back in (after being on break), incredibly anxious, and hesitant at the very least. I'll just have to suck it up and do it though. It is my home too. My lack of holding my boundaries needs to stop.

01-02-2012, 06:13 PM

You sound like you started out really well and that was a huge step for you so credit to you!

But then when she got upset you put your own feelings and needs aside again.

I hope that you can follow up on this if she does not contain her behaviour. If it comes to a head and you do feel you are giving in it may be best to say that you give her a week to demonstarte all changes rather than just saying ok.

Good luck.