Down-on-his-luck roommate turns out to be a hoarder

Published 3:19 pm Monday, August 17, 2020

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DEAR ABBY: Last month, I found out a friend of mine was going to be living out of his van. I couldn’t let him do that, so I offered him my second bedroom and put him on the lease.
He told me Uber doesn’t pay much, and he couldn’t afford half the $1,700-a-month rent, so we agreed he would pay what he could, roughly $200-$300 of the $1,700. I said it was OK because I didn’t take him in for money purposes. I did it to help a friend in need, and I had spare space.
I quickly found out that he’s a hoarder. His entire bedroom is full of his boxes of stuff (manga, anime, books, etc., not furniture or a TV), so much so that he’s been sleeping on my living room couch. He also spends all his time at home and Ubered only the last two days of the month to make the $200 to pay me.
I guess my question is, our agreement was $200-$300 a month, which he paid, but does finding out he’s working only two days a month to make it change our agreement? — TOOK IN A LOST PUPPY IN HAWAII
DEAR TOOK: May I point out that when you took this “puppy” in, it wasn’t so he’d be sleeping on your couch but in the spare room? He shouldn’t be using YOUR living room or YOUR couch for sleeping.
Because you put this freeloader on the lease — for what reason, I cannot fathom — you may need an attorney to get him out of there. Rather than working two days a month to pay that minuscule amount of rent to you, he should be driving enough hours to accumulate a down payment on a place of his own. To say that your kindness has been taken advantage of is an understatement.
DEAR ABBY: I am a 21-year-old woman who hasn’t been very lucky when it comes to relationships. My first real relationship wasn’t until I was 20, and it didn’t last too long. I have “talked” to quite a few guys, but they never went past the “getting to know you” stage.
I was able to figure out things I wanted and didn’t want in a relationship. My best friend for the last eight years has always been there to help me get through some pretty hard times. He has all the qualities I’m looking for in someone. He’s smart, funny, honest, caring and is literally a male version of me.
When we were younger, he told me he had feelings for me, but I only saw him as a friend. Everyone would tell us we should be together, but I ignored it. After years of knowing I didn’t feel the same way, he gave up trying to progress our friendship into something more. I always told him I didn’t want to get romantically involved because I value his friendship too much and I didn’t want to lose him.
He recently started a relationship with someone, and it made me realize I might have romantic feelings for him that I haven’t had before. I don’t know what to do. Please help. — TOO LATE IN TEXAS
DEAR TOO LATE: The longer you remain silent, the greater the chances that your friend’s new relationship could develop into something serious. Tell him all the qualities you think are special about him (minus the one about being your “clone”). Then follow it up with the fact that it wasn’t until he started this new romantic relationship that you realized you have those kinds of feelings for him. Better late than never.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
What teens need to know about sex, drugs, AIDS and getting along with peers and parents is in “What Every Teen Should Know.” Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $8 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Teen Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)

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