Living with roommates is stressful, and even more so when you think you’re falling for one of them. What’s more, rooming with an individual that you think you’ve developed romantic feelings for is tricky, as they may not reciprocate those feelings, your friendship could be ruined, and living with one another can become awkward. However, if it works out, it could also be one of the greatest relationships you’ve ever been in.
Essentially, when dealing with such issues, you want to take a step back and fully assess the situation prior to making any decisions, and you certainly want to think everything through for some time. So, to help you complete the “what now” process, here are some tips for dealing with your romantic feelings for your roommate.
1. Make a list
In situations in which you have different options, but you’re unclear as to which way to go, making a list is a great way to fully assess the repercussions and benefits. A pros and cons list allows you to fully map out the positives and negatives of any decision you can make and to visualize which decision would be best.
When dealing with romantic feelings towards a roommate, you’re entering a large gray area in which there is no right answer. So, assess the situation in whichever way works best for you, but make sure you’re thinking through every possible outcome. The more you are prepared for any outcome, the better prepared you will be to make the right decision for all parties.
2. Gauge their feelings
Just because you’re feeling a certain way does not mean that they are feeling the same. This is a difficult situation where you’ll want to ensure feelings are reciprocated before making any grand gestures. You can either ask them point blank about their feelings or simply ask some pointed questions to assess the situation a little better.
The way that you approach this subject with your roommate largely depends on the nature of your relationship, so determine what the best course of action is for you and act accordingly. Just make sure that whichever method you’re using, you’re considering their feelings in addition to your own.
3. Think short-term
When you’re deciding which option is best for you, make sure that you are first thinking of the short-term effects. What is your current relationship status? Is this the right time? Are the two of you on the same page? What would this mean for your current living situation?
Basically, you will want to assess the entirety of the situation in its current state, and how things would change if you were to move forward with whichever decision you make. This is the easiest component to think about, as you’re thinking in terms of the immediate future.
4. Think long-term
Though it’s the more difficult thought-process, thinking about long-term repercussions is essential to determining whether or not you’re making the right decision. You want to think about how long the two of you will be living together, and what that will mean if things don’t work out down the road. You’ll want to think of both of your future goals -- would this decision even make sense? Or would the two of you grow apart anyway?
Basically, you’ll want to again compare the benefits and the risks for the long-term and determine which decision would be best for you in this case. Then, you’ll want to compare your short and long-term results to make a decision that’s right for you.
5. Make a decision
Utilizing all of the above steps, you will want to make a decision one way or another. However, when making this decision, keep in mind that you must be firm in your decision, and can’t be wishy-washy. Essentially, you are making a decision that, based on your thought-process, is the right decision. This will not change down the road unless situations change, in which case you should reassess all information and avoid making a snap decision.
For this reason, when you make a decision, be sure it’s the one that’s right and stick to it. Don’t go back, just move forward with whichever decision is right for both you and your roommate.
Developing a romantic interest with someone you’re living with is a sticky situation, to say the very least. It leaves a lot up in the air and brings forth numerous questions that could have a drastic impact on your relationship with one another.
However, in following these steps and truly assessing the situation for what it is, you can avoid all drama and miscommunication. You certainly don’t want to step into the situation full throttle without first assessing, and you’ll want to avoid drastic decisions as well, just in case.
The tricky situation can easily be navigated so long as you follow these steps and ensure you’re making the right decision, not only for you but for your roommate as well.
By Victoria Robertson, Uloop