I need a new roommate and one of my coworkers has made it clear that she’s looking for a new place and needs a roommate too. I like her…well enough, but I don’t know if I want to live with someone I work with. It’s either her or a Craigslist stranger. Which is the lesser of the two evils?
A coworker roommate? Listen to me very very carefully. DANGER.
PELIGRO. PERICOLO. DANGER! (That’s danger in French. It’s a cognate). Danger, Will Robinson, Danger. And if you won’t listen to me, listen to the robot:
God, that’s an old-timey reference. We’re all way to young for that. Let’s try something a little more contemporary:
Still not so new. Oh well. I gotta play to my strengths.
Okay, but what if you’re not convinced yet? Well, two roads diverged in a yellow wood…
Road number one: You move in with coworker. Let see how this shapes out.
You and coworker won’t have separate work lives, social lives, or home lives. You’ll stare at one another in uncomfortable silence because you’ll exhaust all potential conversation topics either at work or on the commute. If you want to socialize with ANYONE else in the office, you’ll have to include her. And she’ll have to do the same. Does this sound petty? Probably. But if you don’t become best friends forever, then you’ll at least resent each other a little bit. It’s just too much togetherness. Eventually you’ll be carpooling to and from work, which is a win for the environment, but probably a loss for your sanity. Doesn’t sound like you two are kindred spirits already, and living together is not going to help.
Road number two: You find some Craigslist stranger to be your roommate. Let’s take a look.
You meet them before you decide to live with them (this is key). Maybe both of you ask for a couple of references (to prevent Craigslist killer scenarios). Keep in mind; in this scenario you are someone’s potentially creepy Craigslist roommate. You are under NO obligation to share a social life with this person. You won’t see this person during working hours. You can complain to this person ad nauseam about your job and coworkers (if you feel the need). If you really really hate this person, you just have to live out the lease and then leave. No harm, no foul. You’ll never have to see this person ever again once you move out. Maybe this person is terrible. That is ALWAYS a possibility. If so, well then you get the pleasure of bitching about them to your coworkers and developing a more exciting social life in order to avoid seeing them. Maybe you start going on more weekend vacations because you don’t want to spend downtime with terrible Craigslist person. Even the worst-case scenario with Craigslist roommate is superior to being stuck with you coworker in ALL aspects of your life.
Looks like you need to take the road less traveled by and pick the Craigslist stranger. Sorry, it’s just math. Craigslist stranger is still superior to coworker roommate. Go ahead and let your coworker down easy.
Feature drawing by Meagan Guild