Living with roommates, like most things in life, definitely has its pros and cons. On one hand, you always have someone to binge-watch Friends with for the 144th time, or someone to split groceries and chores with. On the other hand, if you don't get along or your roommate's partner is always over (much to your dismay), things can get a little rocky, especially if you didn't establish boundaries early on. But fret not! Just because you didn't set those boundaries when you first moved in, doesn't mean there isn't a way to do it when the situation arises. Though, ideally, experts say you might want to establish those rules early on.
"Organize a meeting of all the roommates," bestselling author and relationship expert Susan Winter tells Elite Daily. "Include the discussion of partners along with any other matters such as noise, housekeeping, and joint responsibilities. By adding in other topics of importance, the roommate with the partner won't feel singled out or put on the spot. Get a feel for how each person evaluates the situation. Are you the only one with the problem? If so, focus on practicality and functionality. Is the bathroom hard to access? Are the common rooms too tight to enjoy? Do any of the roommates feel uncomfortable with a certain person in their space?"
One thing that's important to know before you approach your roommate about their partner being over too often is why it bothers you so much, Shula Melamed, MA, MPH, and well-being coach, says. "Is it that you feel you can't use the common areas as much as you would like? Is it because it is messier? Anything else? Come to them with the reason and specific examples — avoid being blaming or shaming," she tells Elite Daily. If you know why, then your roommate may be more understanding because they know specifically where you're coming from. It's not that you just don't want their partner over — it's that you have an actual reason.
Once you've established boundaries for when or how often your roomie's bae can be over, Céline Sauvet, French certified dating coach extraordinaire and administrator of Facebook group, High Vibe & Highly Sensitive Single Ladies looking for Mr Right, suggests one thing. "Write down the main points you discussed," she tells Elite Daily. "It is always a good idea to have evidence to refer to." Another thing that may help keep the peace is to stress that these rules apply to everyone, yourself included. "Adding another person to your home takes up space and resources," Winter explains. "All roommates need to be mindful of each other's needs and comfort levels."
There's a chance your roommate may not take the news that you don't want their partner around as much very well. And while you may be tempted to react angrily if your roomie does, try comforting them instead. "Listen to them but also try to have them recognize that this is one of the caveats with sharing space with people," Melamed says. Ask them to "find other places to spend time with each other or find a way to spend more time in [their] designated bedroom space." It may be hard to compose yourself when you feel like you're the one who should be upset, but the more level-headed you are, the easier it may be to get your roomie to see why you're setting boundaries now.
Your roommate is in the middle of this situation, so try to bear with them. They have to be the middle-person between their partner and their roommate, so they may feel stressed out about having to find something that works for everyone. "You have to communicate and get to understand each other and find a respectful solution for all, including you," Sauvet says. "Take some time to see what solution would be the best in this context, to bring back more serenity in your home, which is important for your [and your roommate's] well-being."