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Monday, April 23, 2012

The Horny Roommate - Part 3 (Sometimes It Gets Worse Before It Gets Better)

Dear Bro Jo,

Thought I would give you a summary of how the rest of the semester played out...

Things got worse.

The making out got heavier, and she started doing things because she knew it would bother me. Like making out heavily with the blinds wide open, and when we would walk into the room, she wouldn't stop.

She knew the sex talk and jokes bothered me, so they would talk about it even more. Many other stupid things happened, like when I suggested we all take 5 minute showers on Sunday morning (she had been taking really long ones and the rest of us would take ice cold showers), the next morning she took half an hour and when I confronted her as kindly and friendly as I could "hey, would you mind, you know, maybe taking a shorter shower next Sunday? Like, 5-10 minutes? We all took ice cold showers and it would just be nice if we could have some warm water.." That blew up in my face, and it was really dumb.

From that point on for the rest of the semester she gave me the silent treatment.

That's also when the deliberately trying to push my buttons with the making out and sex talk started. The relief society president told us both we should try to be of service to one another. I would be nothing but nice, offer her cookies I made and clean the bedroom, but there would be no response. I knew I was doing the right thing though, so I kept it up.

Long story short, her behavior only got worse.

I went to the bishop (the previous one had been released, so even though I talked to him, the new one did not know about this), and just kept up my patience. The bishop told me I was doing everything right, I've done all I can, and thanked me for letting him know.

Things were bad.

We did have one or two more confrontations (always involving them being on top of one another heavily kissing under blankets so you couldn't see past their necks and me not being able to tolerate being in the same room as that....) and it was just plain awful.

Every time "Mike" would be in the apartment when I was, he acted like a guilty dog. He wouldn't make eye contact, kept his head low, and avoided me like crazy. It was almost funny, but really the whole thing was just bad.

But now I am out of the apartment. I am rooming with the girl who was the relief society president. I never have to see her again.

In my heart, I forgive her for her behavior, and I have made things straight with the Lord through repentance.

I did apologize to her for anything I said that may have been rude, and for getting frustrated. Of course she said she doesn't forgive me, but that's her problem. She also let all the other roommates know she doesn't like me.

Oh. Well.

I feel like I have learned so much. And though I am now somewhat paranoid (every time my roommate speaks, I keep bracing myself and putting my guard up, thinking it will be Jenny with something rude to say, and every time I see someone with similar features to Jenny, I think "oh no, not her"), but with time I will get over it and get used to not having to share a room with a manipulative roommate.

Living with roommates and missionary companions prepares you for marriage, and helps you grow to (hopefully) be a better adult.

Thanks for your help with this.

-V.E



Dear VE,

Do you have any contact with "Jenny" and "Mike" at all? When are they supposed to get married?

I wonder if they will . . .

They may be truly in love and just unable (or unwilling) to hold back on the physical stuff (that's, again, still not an excuse), but if the physical stuff is all that amounts to the substance of their relationship . . . well, let's just say that if they do get married they're in for some very rough times ahead.

I'm glad you stuck to your guns on this.

I'm glad you got out of that apartment, too. This type of stuff happens WAY MORE OFTEN at the Y and Y of I than people tend to talk about - you're certainly not the only one that's ever had to deal with this. So "thank you" for sharing the stories and giving us an update.


Best,

- Bro Jo



Dear Bro Jo,

Nope, no contact. "Mike" removed me from facebook who knows how long ago, I removed "Jenny" the day I moved out of the apartment, and "Jenny" only texted me once back in February to tell me she's sorry for her behavior (the silent treatment), but then rebutted that with a long explanation as to why I should be sorry too and how it's all my fault.

I worry for them, and I pray for them.

I can almost guarantee that the first several weeks, perhaps months, of their marriage will be awesome for them, because they'll be in honeymoon mode. But it won't last. (Nor should it, but I have a bad feeling there could be a nasty crash from this.)

But the arguments they had - I don't remember if I mentioned that in the previous email - they argued over everything... loudly.. from who's making dinner, to stupid things/disagreements about their classes, to him not wanting to wear a condom on the honey moon because they're uncomfortable. (I have no idea how he knows that, not my business, and TMI.)
Sometimes her sister would come over. They treated each other like dirt. It was shocking.

I know when I had my foul relationship and was not doing things right, I stepped back and realized I had not been very kind to my siblings, either. The same thing with my older sister, when she was in a poisonous relationship, she was just plain mean sometimes. We've all long since forgiven each other for this, but I sensed the exact same negative spirit in Jenny and Mike that I did with myself in that bad relationship.

It made me depressed, stressed, and scared.

My parents told me that like a recovering alcoholic is highly aware of when others are drinking, because of my experiences, I'm extra aware of when people around me do not have pure intentions for their physical behavior.

I just worry for them now.

Earlier in the semester when she was still talking to me, she told me "sometimes I get a little scared for myself about this... it doesn't feel real. I can't watch movies or read books with romance in it, because I start to make that my reality and lose track of the real reality, and I can't tell if this (the relationship) is real or not."

I don't know about you, but that raised red flags for me. And it scared the crap out of me for her.


They got married in the temple last (date withheld). I saw pictures on Facebook, so that's what I'm assuming.

Now it's up to them, and hopefully the Lord blesses them with help and ways to get through any struggles they come across.

Thanks for the tips, and thanks for the assurance. It's always appreciated, and very very very helpful.

Most of all, I'm just glad it's done. It was a learning experience I was definitely not expecting to have. But I'm glad I had it. And I'm eternally grateful it is over.

Thanks again,

VE


PS ..and by the way, thanks for responding to those comments. They... hurt. Of course they don't know me, but gosh I'm just sensitive sometimes.

I thought it was funny that Anonymous mentioned him coming before hours/staying late, and porn being left around. Too many things happened to list, but many times Mike would come over in the morning, to take care of her when she was "sick".

I would step out of the shower and guess who's there! My roommates would walk out of their room
straight from bed with no bra on under their shirts to get cereal and whoa! There's a guy here.

At 9 in the morning.

Blah. So glad it's done.



Dear VE,

I'm sorry. I wasn't going to publish some of the comments, and thought about running some of them by you first, but then I figured that the discussion needs to happen.

I've actually received letters like yours before from girls (mostly at the Y of I of . . . interesting, huh?) who've been in the same situation. They're typically freaked out and don't know what to do. I think your willingness to speak up will inspire them.

Thanks for facilitating the discussion and being thick skinned.

- Bro Jo

2 comments:

Frank Pellett said...

I'm glad for the discussion this has generated, and a bit sad for the turnaround of those who felt the need to condemn the one asking for advice. As Bro jo said, the issue is not so much (and not only) of being uncomfortable or deciding how to handle others crossing the line, but more of deciding to cross the line in front of others. You'd feel uncomfortable with your parents making out (and doing other pg-13 things) in front of you; you'd be more uncomfortable is your single parent did those things in front of you, even if it was with a fiancee. And to the respondant with the non-LDS roommate who didn't feel a loss of the spirit with pg-13 to r rated items displayed on the walls - good for you. Not everyone can, so please don't assume everyone should be able to handle what you can. However, I seriously doubt you'd feel the spirit with you if your roommate decided to do sexual things with you in attendance.

VE did the right thing in talking to her roommate about her (VE) being uncomfortable with her (roommate)'s actions. The reaction of the roommate, being defensive and justifying, was inappropriate. In a marriage, you should be able to talk about things that make one or the other of you uncomfortable and work out the right course of action together; rommates are no different.

For reporting to the Bishop, I think VE took the best steps. She talked to her roommate, then went to the Bishop with her concerns since there was no resolution with the roommate. Since the roommate was unwilling to fix the problem, it is certainly acceptable to go to your Bishop and say "Bishop, this is happening in my home, I'm not able to get it resolved, and I need help". While there is a "chain of command" (VT/HT, RS/EQ Pres, Bishop), in the case of sin, not everyone needs to know, just the one given the keys to handle it. Adding more people (no matter how well intentioned) just promotes gossip.

Thanks again for the letters and excellent discussion, BroJo and VE.

Kendra said...

I admire VE for her actions and applaud the way she handled it.

Having just left a very similar situation at BYU, I know how it feels to be in an apartment with a roommate and her fiancee who are,to say the least, very affectionate with each other. It was very awkward and uncomfortable for me.

I did not confront my roommate about her actions, because I didn't want to stir the pot in the apartment. I had spoken to my other roommate (it's a 3 person apartment, by the way) about the situation, and she told me she did not feel uncomfortable. So, I did not want to confront anyone when I knew that my opinion was outnumbered.

I wish I had been as brave as VE and said something, but now that we are no longer roommates, I think the situation is out of my hands and wish them the best.

Hopefully things work out for VE with her new roommates! :)