A homeowner who was branded “selfish” after refusing to let his friend and his fiancée move into his three-bedroom house has won the backing of the internet.
Writing in a post shared to Reddit under the handle primeisok, the 28-year-old man said “the idea of living with someone, let alone two people, does not sit well with me.”
“I love the feeling of coming home to an empty house. Everything is as I left it, and I can properly unwind. Also, living alone makes it easier to bring girls over.”
There may be some merit to his desire to keep things neat and tidy too.
In 2021, a study conducted by OnePoll in conjunction with the laundry company Rinse found people who live with roommates tended to be messier than those who live alone.
According to the poll of 2,000 U.S. adults, just 67 percent of respondents who lived with roommates felt on top of their chores. By comparison, 89 percent of those who lived alone said they regularly did chores.
The situation detailed in the Reddit post was more complicated though.
The Reddit user wrote that his friend, Tom, and Tom’s fiancée, Kat, are unable to pay their rent after encountering financial issues. They have one of two options: either live with the user who stays close to their mutual friends or stay at Kat’s parents’ house which is two hours away, making it a difficult commute.
However, the man is hesitant to give up his space. “I have one bedroom where I sleep, the other two bedrooms are my home office and my library,” he said. When he explained this to Tom and Kat, “they were not happy.”
“They called me selfish for not sacrificing for them,” he wrote. “They said a true friend would help.”
Eager to further clarify his stance, the man decided to deliver some “blunt truth” by admitting that while he would “be happy” to live with Tom, he was less keen on the idea of Kat staying in his house as she “doesn’t work” and has dogs that stay inside all the time.
“I told them that Tom has told me privately he gets frustrated that he comes home from work and still has to prepare dinner and do most of the chores,” he wrote, adding, “I told Kat, she’s lucky she is with someone who tolerates her and loves her, but I’m not like Tom.”
Kat branded him “evil” for the remarks but many online felt he was within his rights to refuse their stay.
Diane Gottsman, national etiquette expert at The Protocol School of Texas told Newsweek: “It’s not a matter of true friendship, more of lifestyle, changes, and sacrifices.
“If it were only his one, good friend, for a weekend, or a very limited number of days, I am certain the friend would be happy to help,” she said. “However, this is not the case. It’s a big ask of anyone to change their entire lifestyle. [And to] add to that, the girlfriend does not work and it’s basically an invasion of space. As adults, it’s our responsibility to find what works best for everyone concerned and it seems that moving back with the parents for a short time is the best option. It is not the friend’s responsibility to take care of two grown adults and their pets.”
That sentiment was echoed on social media. User Saddwitch commented: “You don’t owe anyone a place to live. And honestly, I would never, ever let them stay even [temporarily]. Kat seems like the person who would make you evict her to get her out once she gets her claws in.”
Another, writing as _mmiggss_, warned: “Tom and Kat aren’t looking for a place to stay for a couple of weeks in an emergency, they’re looking for a long-term place to live. They got kicked out of their old place because they couldn’t pay the rent. They’re not magically going to be able to afford to rent a new place.”
Elsewhere, PerkyLurkey said: “Tom puts up with her sitting at home, not helping the household, but it doesn’t mean you need to also support her. It’s not negative to point out what is actually happening.”
Newsweek reached out to u/primeisok for comment. We could not verify the details of the case.
Are you and your friend stuck in an argument? Let us know via email@example.com. We can ask experts for advice, and your story could be featured on Newsweek.