Clueless roommates

siniang

MyPTSD Pro
^^^^ But it’s a catastrophe waiting to happen once a home becomes multi-family. Because it demands that everyone follow 1 family’s rhythms & preferences, rather than each being able to follow their own, and then come together as those rhythms allow

This ^^^ really can't be reiterated strongly enough. Because gawd damn is it true. When we were living in my grandparents' house (hah... you can already see the problem by my choice of words), we did have two completely separate apartments. But... it was always my grandparents' house. It was never 'our house'. Which they never failed to point out every now and then. And while they defined the rules for all common spaces, it really always were 'their' spaces, not 'our' spaces, and they consistently tried to push those boundaries even into our own apartment.

I've spent sooooo much time temporarily living in other people's homes over the years. When visiting family/spending summers with them. During exchanges. During internships abroad. When starting school abroad. You name it. No matter how many pictures and string lights I put up in 'my' room, it never became a 'home away from home'. Because outside that room you had to follow your host's rules. And even inside your room you were limited with what you were allowed.

Add on the layer of living with family - that you aren't married to (because as Friday mentioned, it does naturally come with a different dynamic). There is a reason that multi-family housholds aren't really that common unless they function on the basis of one very dominant patriarch/matriarch who makes ALL the rules for EVERYONE. Because no matter how much you like a person and how much you're related, living together is a different beast.

And even if you cleared out space for your sis and nephew for them to make it theirs, to them it will continue feeling like they're living in someone else's house. And you yourself will continue feeling invaded. Because this scenario just isn't really natural. They also know - or at least hope - this is only temporary and if you already know something is gonna be temporary, even if you don't know how long that 'temporary' actually is going to be, it's really effing hard to make yourself feel at 'home'. Which always puts a sublimial level of tension on onself because you never can truly relax as you would be able to in your 'home'.

Until recently it's been working really well

Chances are that in addition to your anniversary season starting early they've also probably tried to put in more effort to be on good behavior themselves. Because they just continued feeling like guests, no matter how much you tried to make them feel welcomed and help them make it their home too. But one can keep that up for only so long. Add in that we're starting the 'dark season' that's really hard on a lot of people. Add in a friggin f*cking ongoing pandemic. Add in all those things your sis is struggling herself regardless (you mentioned illness. She's also probably keep having financial worries). Your nephew is coming up to teenage years if I remember correctly?

Creating space. Like Friday, I think that's really the only true solution to get along with room mates. And if it's just now starting to become a problem, even if you already gave them space that is their own? Maybe time to revisit that whole topic *with them*.

having a day of actual fun (I cinema, ice skate, cabin away) has also helped ease the tension

I also wanted to touch on this one. Because from my experience, while it very well may help ease some tension ... it can also really tremendously backfire. I know for me it more than once actually made things worse when we tried to 'do' something to take our minds of conflict. Because it felt forced. It didn't solve the problems. I felt pressured, not only to go when I maybe didn't actually feel like it but being polite, but also because I felt like I was expected to be better, afterwards, to somehow have the conflict just go poof. I also fare fairly poorly when I *know* something is only done as a proxy/result of something else and not out of its own initiative (going ice skate to ease tension instead of going ice skating because we wanted to go ice skating and nothing else, not deeper motives, no strings attached)

Just a word of caution ^^'
 

ruborcoraxxx

Sponsor
I feel ya on this post @Freida . Honestly I don't know much myself as I don't have enough positive experiences to share.

But definitely having space for everyone and space that allows self care and relaxation too. My guess is that your hubby is your best ally in this as he knows you well and could be able to share his experiences with her and make it more understandable.

Because when we explain it ourselves it really can come accross as very self centered, demeaning or aggressive. Even when we don't mean to, the discussion is taxing and the feeling of being misunderstood impossible. Also the fact you can't really share what's on your mind because it's just horrible and people will feel attacked by the trauma itself.

I try to make my room a space where I can resource myself and work and eat as well. I try to maintain it tidy and welcoming. Like a home in a home. I've worked years on having a good sound installation, a projector, a bed and a sofa. The world-in-world type of space makes me feel protected and therefore less of a PTSD bitch queen (I really like the title though).

When the rest of them are away I try to clean things and make sorts of physical offerings of that sort to compensate. Not in an exaggerated fashion but just to show that even in the worst period I still do care, and to be fair cleaning works as an excellent distraction against the flashbacks.

Hoping things go well for ya'll
 

scout86

MyPTSD Pro
I'm glad you started this. There's some really good insights here that I appreciate. Even though I live alone, dealing with "people" isn't my best thing. (Dealing with them day in & day out that is. Which is why I'm grateful I don't have to these days.) Anyway, this has given me some interesting things to think about.

A couple things. First, "anniversaries". I understand that this is a big deal for some people. Personally, they are a thing for me, but not a big thing. One of the most useful, and annoying, things my T ever said to me was "You might want to find a better way to think about that." Okay, he's actually said that more than once. So is there any possible way to find a better way to think about anniversaries? It can't be a great thing to have your life controlled by the calendar. And, really, and anniversary IS just a date on a calendar. It has the power we give it. Maybe there are ways to CHOOSE how much power you give it?

And then, on the guests/space thing. How ARE all of you looking at that? Are these people guests in your house? Or, do you want them to feel it's their home? And what would that mean? The only times I've ever really felt like I had a physical home have been times when I owned the place, for the most part. When I was a kid, I was living in MY PARENTS home. They made the rules, I abided by the rules because I was too young to be able to get a job and pay my own way and I knew it. During periods of visiting and/or couch surfing, clearly I was living in someone else's home. So, thinking about the grandparents who made clear it was THEIR house @siniang , I can see it. It WAS their house, was it not? I can see where they'd feel they needed some feeling of control. I can see where all of this brings up some potentially complicated interpersonal relationships. ESPECIALLY of all parties aren't seeing things the same way. Are they guests or truly part of the household? What does it mean, to EACH of you what being "part of the household" or "a guest" is? It might help to sit down and have a kind of basic discussion about that sort of thing. (It might not too. LOL)
 

Friday

Moderator
Because when we explain it ourselves it really can come accross as very self centered, demeaning or aggressive. Even when we don't mean to, the discussion is taxing and the feeling of being misunderstood impossible. Also the fact you can't really share what's on your mind because it's just horrible and people will feel attacked by the trauma itself.
Superlike.

And so durn useful.
 
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