If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
DEAR HARRIETTE: I am 22, and I am dating a 30-year-old man who is a residence life coordinator at a dormitory for a large Midwestern university. A part of his benefits is that he has an apartment attached to the dorm, so if the residence assistants need him, he is there.
This apartment does not have any rent attached to it.
I was about to move in with him when he told me that I needed to pay $1,000 a month to him as “rent.” I was shocked when he told me this. I have full knowledge of the fact that he doesn’t pay rent and that he is just planning on taking $1,000 from me every month. This has made me rethink not only moving in with him, but dating him in general. What do you think I should do? I thought that he was going to be the one, but unfortunately, this event has shaken my confidence in him. — Not a Good Fit
DEAR NOT A GOOD FIT: If there ever was a red flag, this is it. You could simply walk away, but if you are curious, ask him why he thinks it’s a good idea to charge you for rent when he is paying none. Perhaps he has bills he needs to pay. Maybe that extra grand will help pay for something essential in his life. If that’s the case, he should state it up front. But that kind of need is best worked out through a transactional relationship — a roommate with no benefits. Since you two are in a relationship, one would presume that you wouldn’t be expected to fund his dreams. Find out why he thinks it’s a good idea to charge you. Hear him out, but if I were you, I would move somewhere else. Oh, and be sure to take your heart with you!
DEAR HARRIETTE: My fiance and I moved in together at the beginning of October, and he is terrible at cleaning up after himself. I have OCD, which he is very aware of, yet he still doesn’t see the importance of putting away the dishes or picking up after himself. He does take out the trash and the dogs, but other than that, I am constantly cleaning up behind him. While dating, I never knew it was this bad. How can I tell him that he needs to be more intentional about keeping a clean house without sounding like a parent? — Clean Home
DEAR CLEAN HOME: Perhaps you can allocate an area of your home that can be his to treat however he likes: his man cave, so to speak. In that space, he can throw his socks around and be as untidy as he wants. You don’t have to ever go in there. That is his space. Outside of that, ask him to follow some basic home hygiene rules. Make a list of what you want him to do to keep tidy. Invite him to work at establishing a routine that will help him to honor his agreement. Know that he won’t always be successful, but if and when he tries, thank him. This will reinforce the good habit.