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Annoying housemate
101

Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 14:22

I’d absolutely love some advice on this.

for financial reasons I’m living with a housemate and not alone. There is so much good about the situation and it took me a long time to find suitable accommodation. I was living in a hotel for a while and in a rented mobile home for a while after my marriage ended. Accommodation is very expensive and I don’t want to move out. Moving out is not the solution I’m looking for. Believe me, I’ve been through the mill with housing.

but …

my housemate is driving me around the twist! He was so many totally annoying traits. I don’t mind that I do almost all of the cleaning, it’s not that kind of stuff - I can tolerate that, it’s his personality. He’s the argumentative sort, which is the last thing I need after a long day massaging my boss’s ego in a hot kitchen (I’m a chef) & his other extra annoying trait is making a huge deal out of it any time he does anything nice or good for me or anyone else. It almost takes the good out of it that he goes on so much about how great he is for doing something! The third thing is he never ever leaves the house (just to buy food and that’s it!). He has no social or romantic life whatsoever.

so you might wonder what my question even is . Does anyone have any tricks or tips for dealing with this sort of person? I keep busy and I work long hours so I’m not there all that much but he’s my housemate so I still see him more than anyone else and it can be the tiniest annoying text from him that triggers me! Any time i’m there he’s there

tips? Help? Please?

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 14:25

has so many annoying habits (not was)

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ABugsLyfe · 03/08/2022 16:58

Just ignore him?
When I use to house-share in Uni, I never got on with some of my housemates and ignoring was the best medicine.

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FangsForTheMemory · 03/08/2022 17:29

Grey rock him. You say he has no romantic or social life. What if he's expecting you to fill the gap?

Exactly.

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TheHideAndSeekingHill · 03/08/2022 17:41

  1. spend more time in your room. Get comfy stuff in there like nice cushions, maybe a telly etc so you can really relax after a tough day. Even a little fridge and kettle if you have room.
  2. ignore most of his texts til a time when you can deal with them. And have a friend you can laugh with when he's being ridiculous about how he's emptied the bin "for you" or whatever

    If I ever went back to house sharing my main thing is I would never move in with a male housemate again. I used to love living with men but as they get older they get sooooo much weirder in my experience.
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StrawberryFurl · 03/08/2022 17:43

I really think you are better off finding somewhere else. I know it’s not easy to find somewhere to live in some places, but honestly if you apply yourself I’m sure something will turn up. Could even be materially a lot better. One thing about private renting (tryna be positive) is that you are free to move if the environment is not to your liking! I’d be taking advantage of that if I were you.

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 18:27

@StrawberryFurl thanks for responding but Moving out is not an option for several reasons. I don’t want to move out. I want to find a way to tolerate my situation as there are many advantages to it and I’ve done enough house sharing to know there are very few perfect strangers out there!

@TheHideAndSeekingHill
thank you very much. I’ve been told I can be too friendly with people so I think a bit of distance would be a great idea. My room is HUGE, which is one of the big advantages of staying so I guess I need to spend more time there working on hobbies and less time with him watching telly. I don’t want to spend all my time in my room though as it’s unhealthy and I know I have to interact with him. I don’t hate the guy. He’s just annoying AF!

@ABugsLyfe Thank you.
i respect him and I don’t want to be rude. He’s not a bad man so I wouldn’t ignore him but I suppose when he tries to argue EVERY F-IN POINT ABOUT EVERY F-IN THING, I could just disengage and say ‘the weather is nice today.’

@FangsForTheMemory
thank you and yeah, you’re right. He’s made it very clear that he’d like us to hang out and he tells me regularly how attractive he finds me. I haven’t as much as kissed a man in years (sadly!!) since my marriage ended but I’m sure it’s clear I ain’t interested in this guy romantically 🤨🤪

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 18:29

I just really need to figure out a way to communicate civilly without being so triggered and wound up by him. It’s impossible to avoid someone who is there EVERY MINUTE OF EVERY DAY and i’m naturally friendly so I like to chat but even the way he responds to small household-related texts is annoying!

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StrawberryFurl · 03/08/2022 18:41

Sure I understand your point - sorry I didn’t read your OP properly. You really don’t want to move or unable to move. Understood. (But you know, remember, if things get too bad, you always have a choice 😉.).

meanwhile, obviously shorten all contact, don’t reply to texts (tell him you’re too busy), and don’t watch tele with him.

However the fact that he keeps telling you how attractive he finds you … just that alone is another reason to get outta there, at least to my mind…. It’s creepy!

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FullBush · 03/08/2022 18:49

Sorry OP but you’re clearly in denial. In my experience, people who are annoying don’t become less so, it just gets worse until you end up in a very focus atmosphere. Also if he’s already made it clear he finds you attractive he probably isn’t going to like finding out that’s not reciprocated at some point.

It also sounds like you’re cleaning up after him / more than him. That’s another recipe for contempt…

You do seem hell bent on staying there though - which seems like insanity to me. Not being able to relax and be left in peace at home would be my worst nightmare.

My only tip would be to get out - I know you don’t want to hear that, but that’s the reality if you want a happy home life.

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FullBush · 03/08/2022 18:50

toxic atmosphere

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 20:41

I cannot move out as I cannot afford to move out and there is no other available housing. Houseshares in my area are full of students in their 20s getting drunk. I was so desperate at one point I was going to move into one but once I told them my age, they said ‘I might not appreciate (their) lifestyle.’ Trust me on that please - i spent a whole year looking and being ‘shortlisted’ for shitty houseshares while living in a hotel and then a mobile home! I’m not ‘hellbent’ on staying, I’m just all too aware of the alternatives of which I explored as a second job for a year.

I Just really want some advice on ways to deal with him or cope with him. I’m looking for advice on ways to deal with a person like this. Some may work with someone like this or some may have someone in their family like this.

he knows I’ve no interest in any romance with him, I’ve made that infinitely clear.

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 20:46

@StrawberryFurl
Yeah not watching telly with him is probably a start. I love telly to unwind but I waste so much time watching telly too so maybe I should see it as a good thing! I think it’s cause my job can be fairly full-on and all I need at home Is pure chill-out. I don’t need someone asking me if and why I believe in God or asking me all-too-personal questions!

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Homewardbound2022 · 03/08/2022 20:51

One way of coping is shutting down conversations. No eye contact!
Reply with "oh right", "that's interesting", "good to know, thanks".
Wear earphones, sing when he's in the vicinity.
Pretend you need to make a call or use the toilet when he's in full flow.
Make it into an entertaining game so you don't lose your mind.

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 20:55

@Homewardbound2022
Thanks. Yeah those kind of phrases might help. ‘Good to know, thanks.’ ‘Interesting.’ I have a tendency to engage a lot so getting on advise on how to politely engage less is helpful

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 20:57

I meant politely disengage

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saraclara · 03/08/2022 21:08

Whose name is on the rental agreement? Or does the landlord rent out each room individually?

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EarthSight · 03/08/2022 21:54

so you might wonder what my question even is

Not everyone has a question. Some just want to vent, and that's ok. I sympathise - I've lived with some disgusting and strange people for years who've brought me to tears. Way worse than your housemate.

Despite your natural tendency to chat, you're going to have to start being more self-disciplined and start not communicating so much with him. It's not like you're best friends is it, so he'll hardly miss it.

There's some of your post that is making me wonder if you are fixating on him for some other reason. Do you think you are taking all of your frustrations out on him that you were not able to express at your boss?

You say he has no romantic or social life whatsoever. Do you? How often are you in the house when you are not in work?

It sounds to me like like you also simply need to have a place to yourself. Not everyone is suited to living with others.

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EvenMoreFuriousVexation · 03/08/2022 22:19

This might sound counter intuitive, but try "praying" for him. Focus your goodwill on him and wish him happiness and peace.

When I have to deal with someone annoying, it helps me remember that their annoying habits are often driven by an unmet need. That doesn't mean I have to meet that need myself, but I can have compassion and genuinely hope they are able to get that need met in a healthy way.

I would also reduce the amount of time I spent with him and take up a hobby or study that kept me in my room more 😉

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Paintsplat · 03/08/2022 22:41

If you're spending time in the living room and don't want to engage, read a book. If needed, with headphones! If you take a few seconds to reply, and have to look up, maybe with a 'sorry what did you say...?' then he might get the hint a bit more

Re him always trying to start an argument - either grey rock, or point it out to him. Eg answer politely the first time, second time 'i feel like you're trying to start something here, I've had a long day, I'm not going to get drawn in ' if he takes offence he's likely to try arguing that he's not - 'again, I've had a long day, that's all I've got to say for now'. If he persists leave the room.

With the 'nice' things he does and points out - politely, 'what do you want me to say to that?'
If he says 'nothing' - 'ok' , and carry on with whatever you're doing
If he says he wants thanks/you should thank him 'ok, but if that's the case I'm wondering why you don't thank me when I did X Y and Z yesterday'
Again if he tries to start an argument, keep calm and just say I'm not going to get drawn into it.

None of this is with the intent to antagonise, just trying to get him to think, gently asserting your own boundaries and disengaging
Essentially treating him like a stroppy teen, because that is how he is behaving!

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TheHideAndSeekingHill · 03/08/2022 23:25

Ah bugger if he’s saying he finds you attractive etc I also think unfortunately you’ll have to start planning now to move out. Even if it takes another year you’ll end up in a better situation.

I doubt you feel very safe living with a man who never goes out and seems a bit obsessed with you.

you don’t owe it to him to be his friend.

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 23:26

Thanks for the responses. I like the idea of ‘praying’ for him and I agree that it’s all to do with unmet needs. He has a lot of compensation going on and acts like a complete ‘know it all’ even about things specifically to do with my job which he really doesn’t have a clue about … but talks like he does. I feel I can understand why he is the way he is but it makes him no less infuriating. I do need to work on compassion for him but fick it’s hard when he’s being so condescending and/or needy and/or THERE!!!

I do need to use headphones & read books more often. Why the heck am I hanging out in the living room with him watching tv? What a waste of time . Maybe I need to take this as a sign to work on myself more . He just gets under my skin.

thanks for the tips on how to respond to his CONSTANT self-gratification … ‘what do you want me to say to that?’ is a good one. I cleaned the whole house from top to bottom on my last day off work and he never thanked me yet he makes a huge song and dance about the tiniest little things. He acts like he’s doing me a favour when really he’s just doing normal and I might add, Tiny everyday things.

thanks for letting me vent and as a PP said, venting is necessary!

im not dating these days but I do have a good life otherwise (for the most part … crazy boss aside 🤬). I would like to date but online didn’t work for me and few other opportunities to meet men.

it’s the disengaging bit that I struggle with … I really need to disengage. I keep thinking ‘oh he’s actually a lovely guy’ and then we get into a proper conversation, and I feel like I’m going insane!

he does a few other insanely annoying things but they’re so unbelievably unusual and specific that I didn’t want to write them in the OP for fear of outing

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 23:31

I just saw your post after I posted @TheHideAndSeekingHill I feel safe thankfully but I have had to tell him a few times that I didn’t want to go out with him. He didn’t ask me out officially but asked me if I’d like to go to dinner etc as friends but I said no very clearly. I’m so glad I’m able to say no. There was a time when I wouldn’t have been able to.

Interesting you say I don’t owe it to him to be his friend because that’s exactly how I feel. I feel like I owe him something.

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saraclara · 03/08/2022 23:36

I cleaned the whole house from top to bottom on my last day off work and he never thanked me yet he makes a huge song and dance about the tiniest little things.

Then say that. When he wants gratitude and attention for the tiniest thing, say "I cleaned the house from top to bottom on Thursday, which took most of my day off. I don't recall you even noticing, never mind acknowledging it, thanking me, or expressing gratitude"

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Forgiveitall · 03/08/2022 23:42

Thanks @saraclara I guess I could be more assertive with him all right but I’m afraid that’ll just make his argumentative side worse. He’s the type that could (& would!) argue that black is white. It’s funny … I think back to my STBEXH and at times, rose-tinted glasses go on because he seems less annoying by comparison … but the grass is always greener and it is not that simple of course

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Forgiveitall · 04/08/2022 11:07

Hello! Just to give ye a very current example - please bear with me - a friend/colleague has asked me if I'd like to stay in hers for two nights as she needs a hand with a few things in her house and I could also do with a break so it's win-win. So I texted him to tell him I wouldn't be home for two days and he replies saying 'That's no problem at all. No worries at all.' Like who replies saying that to that? He treats EVERYTHING as if he's doing me a favour!!

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