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Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014

Ask Angela: I want an apartment with no booze and no boys

By Angela Trusty, For the Deseret News

Published: Fri, Sept. 5 8:19 a.m. MDT

 Angela Trusty responds to a reader who is concerned about her living situation.

Angela Trusty responds to a reader who is concerned about her living situation.

(Shutterstock)

Dear Angela,

I recently moved into an apartment where the listing specified, “Looking for women with LDS standards.” I met the girls and moved in believing the other roommates in the apartment would be adhering to the Law of Chastity and Word of Wisdom. But it’s been nothing but booze and boys since day one.

All of the other girls have lived here for at least a year and as the new girl in the house, I don’t feel like it’s my place to change how they live. But I feel very uncomfortable and I’d like to live in a place that is and feels peaceful and clean. I’ve signed the lease, I’m obligated to live here for at least a year, but I’m feeling like I can’t make it another minute. Help?

Thanks,

New Roommate

Dear New Roommate,

I don’t blame you, and while you’re right — you can’t change how they live — you still have options in this situation.

Option No. 1

Talk to your roommates. It may be uncomfortable to talk to all of them at once so I’d speak with whoever was your main contact during your initial move-in. Tell her in an honest (not condemning) way that the living conditions aren’t working for you so you’re looking to move someplace else.

Offer to sell your contract on your own (you can use KSL.com or Craigslist or even Facebook to do this) but give her the option of choosing your replacement. Since you’ve signed a lease, I would also talk to your landlord to make sure you're aware of all of your legal and financial obligations.

Option No. 2

Have a roommate “family home evening” to discuss house expectations and etiquette. Use some of the time to talk about what’s not working for you and collaboratively come up with ways to improve. There’s a chance that other roommates are feeling similar discomfort but aren’t sure how to bring it up. This meeting could be really positive and could be the catalyst in creating that clean and peaceful environment that you’re looking for.

If option No. 2 doesn’t work, you can always go back to Option No. 1.

Remember that these things happen, it may feel really stressful and dramatic but it doesn’t have to be. Be kind, calm and honest and whatever you choose, the Spirit will help out.

Love,

Angela

Like the Ask Angela Facebook page to learn more about New Roommates' experience and visit the Ask Angela Blog for more advice.

Angela Trusty is a millennial writer who lives and writes about the young single adult Mormon experience. Twitter: askange_column

Recommended
1. Coyoteghost
Saint George, UT,
Sept. 5, 2014

As a grandfather with a beautiful, sparkling, LDS grand-daughter entering the U this year I congratulate you on your well-reasoned suggestions.

2. Doklove
Quincy, IL,
Sept. 5, 2014

While I agree with Angela's advice on how to resolve the situation, I also think that the contract was signed under false pretenses. If the ad states that they are Seeking someone with LDS standards- it is a reasonable expectation and assumption that LDS standards are going to be observed. There can be a lot of interpretations of what LDS standards mean on some issues, but immorality and alcohol are pretty clear standards of the church. If the Angela's advice doesn't produce results, I wouldn't hesitate to point this out and demand out of your contract.

3. Dot
Smithfield, UT,
Sept. 5, 2014

This happens so much in Utah -- and elsewhere -- to church members. When we lived out of state, we knew a gal who joined the church in high school. She was so excited to come to Utah and live in Orem and go to one of the universities there and moved into an apartment. She came back home after the first semester because the gals were such bad examples. I know this happens everywhere, and not just today. Fifty years ago it happened too because I lived in an apartment with two gals who frequently brought their boyfriends home for the night. It was a hard situation to live in and thank goodness I only lived there for 7 months. Sad to say, none of us were brave enough to bring it up with the other roommates. Don't be afraid. Be bold and do it. You are paying the same rent/utilities they are and your wishes have to be considered as much as their's!

4. toosmartforyou
Farmington, UT,
Sept. 5, 2014

Consider finding an apartment and then some roommates that share your desires. Be proactive and find a better place. Then everyone will be happier. No need to lower your standards with associated guilt and stress, just take positive steps to live the way you choose. Surely there are others that fit your situation----you just need to find a couple of them and move in together.

It wouldn't hurt to let the landlord know why you're moving out, either. They may not be aware of what is happening.

5. george of the jungle
goshen, UT,
Sept. 5, 2014

I think that the odds of a really bad guy going in, is pretty good, do what you need to do to keep yourself safe. Why risk it.