To be scared to leave my bedroom?

(28 Posts)
shouldnthavesaid Mon 17-Mar-14 18:31:20

I'm being pathetic, I know I am.

I share a flat with two girls. I've lived here 3, S 2 and D 1. D spends most of her time here, S spends a bit less and me the least as my mum lives just twenty miles away.

We're on completely separate tenancies, have a room each and share a bathroom/kitchennette. It's private halls basically.

At the weekend, I was out with my mum and got a sudden text from S.

She has been away for eight-ten weeks (not sure how long) on a placement. D has been in the flat. I have stayed in the flat I think 14 nights over 8 weeks.

In January - when S was away to leave for placement, D informed me she'd be moving away permanently too but not letting her room out til August.

I went to flat, figured I was alone for a couple of months and stupidly, left some stuff of mine in the lounge. I also moved a bookcase (which, as it stood, was full of my own property, pans and that) and cleaned the fridge out, cleaned behind cupboards and that. I put some books on the bookcase, couple of throws on the couch, cuddly toy and some candles. I also moved the couch as it was awkwardly placed. I also dried my washing on the clothes horse in the kitchen. I did nothing drastic - our furniture is all from Ikea, and on wheels so things can be shifted in seconds.

It was my full intention to put everything back quickly before S came back.

I also used the empty shelf in the fridge. Put three yogurts on it and nothing else.

My full intention was to work hard at uni, and stay at the flat for eight weeks.

Within 2 days D came back - decided against moving - acted normal, and we have been getting on brilliantly. Zero complaints from D about the kitchen. We worked together on keeping tidy etc. No problems at all and in fact we were getting on great. I was really happy. I didn't shift things as D wasn't annoyed.

S came back once or twice for weekends - normal, no complaints.

Bang goes my plans when things hit crisis at home 4 weeks in. Cat dies. Sister is sectioned. Mum unwell. I get D&V badly and struggle with uni. Lots of problems.

This weekend - S comes back full time without telling us. She texts me mind says she is not happy. I have apparently treated the flat as my own and she's angry. She and D are both fed up with me. Wants everything back in the places she left it immediately. No room for personal belongings in the kitchen at all. Reminds me she never said she was permanently going and it's wrong that I acted as if she was.

I text apologising, try to explain. I say I meant no harm. Say I feel awkward about coming back to flat now. She texts back that if I tidy up she will be fine.

I am in the city, so go with my mum (who was coming to visit anyway for cuppa) and tidy up as best as I can, as quickly as I can in Case they're waiting. Her parents are both stood in the kitchen talking and moving everything to exact way it was as S told them. I'm now mortified as realize they must have been discussing me too. D has seemed happy for ages, why did she say another thing behind my back?

I took hours to pluck up courage to come to my flat today. I'm now in my room, and don't feel able to leave.

I was bullied a lot at school and have an anxiety disorder. I don't do well with people my own age at all and struggle to say hello to my flat mates even. I was coping really well with talking to D and now I feel so stupid. All along she was fed up with me. I thought she bloody liked me.

I know I have to get out, I need to pee at the very least but I'm too scared. I'm waiting til I hear her and D go into their rooms and even then I'm not sure.

I've had problems in flats before - in my first year of uni I was fined by my flatmates if I ever left dishes in the sink and ended up having the flat under monitoring by halls staff as they said it was bullying/blackmail and that. In second year I ended up with severe depression and anxiety. Barely left my room for 8 months. In third year I moved in with a friend - who within 2 weeks, sent me a list 4 pages long of things I did that annoyed everyone. She used to follow me around the flat wAtching me clean and telling me when I wasn't doing it right. (though could write a book on experiences with her, was flat share from hell all round)

I'm probably an awful flatmate as I'm in and out so much. I have dyspraxia, I'm willing to admit I'm not spotlessly clean but I do my best. Both flatmates know I'm dyspraxic. D knows what it means as she's severely dyslexic.

I know I'm probably not much fun to live with at all, but I do try.

I don't know what to do. I'm probably totally overreacting and am prepared to be told to man up but I'm struggling. I'm between hiding here, anger at them, and anger at myself for being so stupid.

What am I best doing? I do need to pee so I should leave the room shouldn't I. But what about cooking.. And washing? Do I hang it in my room from now on (S frequently hangs hers in the kitchen too, we've done this for well over a year).

I'm sorry if I'm being over dramatic just feel knocked by this.

tulipsaredelicious Mon 17-Mar-14 18:40:07

Storm in a tea cup though I appreciate it doesn't feel that way now. What age are you? I had some dramas when I was sharing as well - egos, personalities, basically kids away from home for the first time. The best way to deal with it is to rise above it, if possible. It doesn't sound like you and these flatmates are friends, particularly - so why should it matter what they think of you? You acted with good intentions, she stated she wasn't happy, you sorted it out. Should be the end of the matter.

Act like there's no problem and soon there won't be.

MaidOfStars Mon 17-Mar-14 18:40:44

So, as far as I can gather, you thought you had the flat to yourself for a while so you moved things around, made yourself comfy etc. And now a flatmate has returned and complained?

So, she's being unreasonable to be so annoyed by this (it's a minor irritation, if that). She's being unreasonable to bitch about to the third flatmate. But you are being unreasonable to hide and act as if it's a major infraction. If all of you continue on your paths, living together will become impossible.

I appreciate that it's easier said than done, but in your shoes, I'd breeze out there and just say "Look, sorry, I didn't realise it would such a problem, I'll move the stuff back and let's have a grown up chat about what IS acceptable. Plus, I really need a pee and can't sit my room forever".

KiwiBanana Mon 17-Mar-14 18:41:26

The best thing you could do right now is face your fear and go for a wee, then go make yourself some dinner. I've learnt with anxiety that the best way to treat it is by facing it head on, otherwise you allow it to take over you.

You've got on not being 'friends' for a couple of years with these women, I'm sure you can carry on with being civil and rubbing along.

You don't have to do everything S says though. If you want to occasionally dry things outside of your room then you should carry on with that, just obviously don't take the piss with it.

MaidOfStars Mon 17-Mar-14 18:42:02

SOrry, you've already moved the stuff back?

Ok, "Look, I'm going to stew on this if it's not out in the open, can we have a chat about what's acceptable in the communal areas?".

spongebob13 Mon 17-Mar-14 18:44:49

don't be so quick to think that D has a problem with you .. S sounds overbearing and probably said D thought the same just to make a point.

Can I ask as don't want to trivialise how you feel but sounds like you struggle a bit .. why do you live away from home when you are so close to your mam ... would it not be easier just to be comfy and not have this extra stress while in uni? are you just very shy or is it something deeper to you think? you sound lovely ... please don't say you are not much fun to live with. sounds like S is the problem and you and D get on without her around.

spongebob13 Mon 17-Mar-14 18:46:36

what I meant was would it not be easier to live at home for the moment

shouldnthavesaid Mon 17-Mar-14 18:49:16

I moved what I could back - I couldn't get to flat until 7 on Sat night. The rest they have done themselves - I found a big bag of stuff in the bathroom they wanted tidied ( which was annoying as included shampoo with no lid on, make up and that, as well as rubbish that wasn't mine) and they've moved the fridge stuff around, seems I have a shelf full of stuff that's not mine but is either out of date or rubbish. Haven't checked freezer yet.

Could prove it's no mine as haven't been buying food, haven't been here to eat it.

Have managed to get out for loo, will nip to tesco for tea quickly as have no real food coming til later tonight!

I'm 22 - D is 19 or 20ish and S is 21 I think. They're both younger than me and both in 3rd year, I'm in 4th. In terms of maturity - both probably years ahead of me, I think.

I have a wee bit between my door and front door so can hopefully dry washing there.

Will see if I can mention it when I see them as I don't want to just ignore it, will take a lot of plucking up though!

Sleepyhoglet Mon 17-Mar-14 18:50:04

Wee in a cup. No, not helpful.

cardibach Mon 17-Mar-14 18:50:48

Why is S in charge of where things go? This - I have apparently treated the flat as my own and she's angry. She and D are both fed up with me. Wants everything back in the places she left it immediately. No room for personal belongings in the kitchen at all. Reminds me she never said she was permanently going and it's wrong that I acted as if she was sounds like someone who owns the flat telling tenants what to do. I sit hers? If not, this is a bit odd. I agree with MaidOfStars you should explain why you did it and ask what would be acceptable.

BlackDaisies Mon 17-Mar-14 18:55:56

Sounds like you are finding it all difficult. I agree that D probably doesn't have a problem with you. Also like KiwiBanana said, it's best to confront your fears. Have a wee, cook dinner and definitely say you'd like to sit and talk about what you'll all be happy with in communal areas. Take a written list if that's easier, just bullet point kitchen/ lounge and talk about what's ok here. Point out that you've all left washing here in the past so it needs talking about. Don't feel guilty or repeat your apologies. You really did nothing wrong and even if they think you did you've apologised already now. Worst case scenario hand in your notice if they continue to make you feel bad or left out. Some people do this to make themselves feel "big" and confident. It's their problem not yours.

itsmeitscathy Mon 17-Mar-14 19:07:27

I had some pretty hellish flat shares at Uni so I feel your pain. Maid of stars is right but I would say that it's not a case of asking what's acceptable, it's about all 3 of you agreeing what is acceptable. It's ridiculous to not be able to keep personal belongings in communal areas, it's your home for goodness sake!
Please don't let them walk over you, you're paying for the joy of living there too remember just as much as they are.
Hold your head high and don't hide in your room. Oh and maybe say something like "there's a load of out of date stuff in the fridge, shall I just chuck it out so we have more room? Just asking because it's not mine but it's obviously in edible now". Good luck!

whois Mon 17-Mar-14 19:20:44

Ok, they sound like total cows but there are probably a few things you can do to disengage.

Clear out all the out of date and ownerless crap from the fridge. Keep your food to your allocated are.

Be super clean and tidy, wash up immediately. Don't leave your personal stuff in the communal areas. Dry your clothes in your room not the communal area.

If you are messy but 'try your best' well, um, basically just sort it out and make sure you aren't messy at all in the communal areas.

Smile, be nice, be polite. Don't be scared to sit in the kitchen or sitting room - it's your flat as much as theirs. Maybe say something to the one you thought you were getting on well with (D) "I'm sorry if moving the sofa around and stuff annoyed you, I didn't realise. I wish you had said something ages ago when it annoyed you and you feel a bit ganged up on because she waited until S came back to tell you" something like that anyway.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Mon 17-Mar-14 20:02:35

I think you have said sorry enough. You pay your way. Three is an awkward number when things go wrong as you are finding.

A dream flatmate is someone who's rarely there. You say you only sleep there infrequently. If you do your share of cleaning, never interfere with personal belongings and don't let food fester untouched in the kitchen, I don't see how you've got their backs up!

Maybe while S was away and you stayed out D missed company. She should have talked face to face and aired any grievances not waited for S to come back. Perhaps like you she is nervous and unsure what to do.

(Btw if D has a boyfriend I can guarantee that the 'problems' she has with you are to do with hoping you'll move out so he can move in).

The usual hassles with flatmates are dodging shared chores, pinching milk or food and inconsiderate habits eg using all the hot water, playing music excessively loud etc.

It's tough when you're shy but try to say hi, or how's it going? and see you later or bye when you go. It unnerves people when they can't connect with you. In a sense that's their problem but a simple gesture paves the way for you to get along.

Look for some place else to live if you feel intimidated but don't creep about avoiding the others. Does S own the flat? You are sharing - that doesn't mean you jump when they dictate.

Fifyfomum Mon 17-Mar-14 20:42:10

Just let it blow over

NaturalBaby Mon 17-Mar-14 20:44:16

I remember feeling like this at uni. I had been there longest but the guy who'd been there the shortest length of time was the one I hid in my room to avoid - he ate my food, left our dishes in his room to go mouldy...the opposite of your girls!

You have as much right to be there as them - keep telling yourself that. There's nothing wrong with what you've done. Focus on your course, your friends and family and little things you can treat yourself to in your flat - nice biscuits, hot chocolate.

If they want to chuck a load of rubbish in a bag in the bathroom then let them deal with it. Leave a note on the bag "I don't know why you've left this bag of rubbish here, none of the contents are mine. I'll let you deal with it I wouldn't want to move anything that belongs to someone else." Why should you have to tidy up their mess?
If they want to behave like bullies then think about why they are behaving the way they are, rather than thinking that they're fed up with you. They are out of order, that's their problem!

gamerchick Mon 17-Mar-14 20:53:27

man it sounds like you know some pure tit ends. Why is she the boss of the place anyroad... you all live there?

Please don't be a creeping jebus sad you have just as much right to go about your business like the rest of them. Being assertive if you're not used to it takes some practice but it's easy to do once you start.

If you don't want to confront her (and I bloody would be over that bathroom bin bag alone) just go about your business. Please don't hide in your room dying for a pee... It's quite upsetting to hear that.

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 17-Mar-14 21:07:26

Bloody hell, some stuff got moved. She needs to get over herself if you ask me.

If she approaches you about it say 'oh that, no harm done, shall I put the kettle on?' and just go about your day with a 'nothing to see here' approach.

deakymom Mon 17-Mar-14 22:00:35

can't you move to a bedsit? if your not getting along living with people perhaps try living with yourself see how bad you really are?

btw if they dry their washing in the kitchen so can you bloody stick up for yourself on that one

namechangesforthehardstuff Mon 17-Mar-14 22:22:32

You sound as though there's more going on than just the flat stuff though OP ? Some social anxiety? Have you spoken to anyone about that ?

Floggingmolly Tue 18-Mar-14 12:15:12

You do need to talk to someone, op. She sounds like a complete cow; but she's obviously sensed a victim and has moved in for the kill.
Being too scared to come out of your room isn't really a healthy response, you must know that?

shouldnthavesaid Wed 19-Mar-14 21:15:56

Been a difficult couple of days. I've tried very much not to stay in my room, but it's certainly easier..

I haven't seen S once. I texted her once, to warn I was soaking a top and not to use the sink in the bathroom for a couple of hours. Haven't heard anything from her at all apart from that. When she leaves her room I basically just stay in mine as can't be bothered arguing.

Ive been in a mess though, myself. I've let dishes pile up in my room - shifted them all this evening. I've been eating through here - dyspraxia and bed eating doesn't mix. Landed up with a lovely pale orange stain on a brand new top and duvet. Duvet's had a wash, only lightly marked. Top came up fine thank God.

And then I spilt milk on the floor.. so scrubbing that.. And then melon on my bed (which from experience sours horribly) so had to change the sheet, and under sheet too. So now bed is stripped bare apart from pillowcases.. I have other stuff like sheets and that but not sure if I fancy changing it all at this time of night.

So I've had to do 3 loads of washing.

Tea went badly wrong tonight, was disgusting (tesco value stuff always is) so binned that and went round to tesco to see if they had sandwiches, they didn't.

So walked to chip shop, mile's walk. That was an achievement as I won't normally go out in the dark alone.

The only good thing in all of that is that a lot of it meant being in the kitchen. I was in there for a good hour and didn't worry or jump every time I heard movement.

I went to a flat viewing last night - meant to be for June but I landed up saying I will move in whenever she is ready, if I get the contract. The landlady said she'll discuss with her husband what they think - mainly because after July, I'd be paying council tax. I said I'm willing to pay that if need be. I really, really, don't want to spend longer than I have to here.

Of course, I'm being stupid though as I don't have a bloody job as yet. I know what I want to do but it's a case of finding the confidence to ring the person and discuss further. If I got that job I'd have more than enough for the rent which is good. All bills included in the flat, if I get it.. Plus a lovely garden.

I've also got an essay to finish, and my dissertation to work on.

My mum's got a breast lump as well, am worried over that.

I am convinced that if S so much as tries to argue I may end up sobbing or start throwing the bloody fridge contents at her or something..

I do have social anxiety yeah, have been seeing a psychologist for just under 18 months. That said, I haven't been going to the appointments. I missed one back in December and I now feel just too frightened to go back. GP theorised it was because I don't want the psychology to end but I don't think that's the case at all.

The good thing is that I have my GP a week on Monday, anyway, so can talk to someone then in real life. Not sure what to do til then apart from go on autopilot for a bit.

shouldnthavesaid Wed 19-Mar-14 21:16:30

Sorry, that's gone considerably off topic and a lot more than I meant to write! Feel free to ignore my venting!

cansu Wed 19-Mar-14 21:50:33

Sharing shouldn't be that hard. Sounds very OTT.

Thetallesttower Wed 19-Mar-14 21:54:40

should'nt it's a shame you are missing the appointments for your social anxiety as it really seems from what you have written that you need them. Uni can be a very isolating time and I personally hate flat sharing, but if you know you have social anxiety- why not get help? You won't be offered it forever on the NHS- services are often better for students than when you are older, so please take it up, i really think it would help.

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