Living with someone is hard

I’ve never had a roommate.

It was a very conscious decision to not move out of my parents’ house until I was able to move into a place that I did not have to share. When living at home, I was a hermit. I came out at dinner time because it was expected of me. All other hours of the day I was busy pretending no one was there.

At the ripe old age of twenty-two I left home, moved into a decently-sized but extremely run-down apartment on a busy shopping street. It was fantastic, even when my upstairs neighbour copious vomiting was so clearly audible that I got nauseous myself. And when the hatch to the basement rotted through, forcing everyone who came in to take a massive leap as they stepped in the front door. It was my apartment and I did not share it with anyone. Well, I shared it with cockroaches so big that pest control did not believe me when I first called, but at least I did not share it with humans. Cockroaches are scary-looking critters, but they’re not judgmental. Or very sociable. And I could throw them off the balcony without risking a police investigation.

In other words, I took to living alone like a duck to water.

So, when the time came that Beloved and I started talking futures together, and he mentioned going back to the US. I wasn’t worried about staying with him. I wasn’t worried about moving across the ocean. I worried about living with him.

For the last nine months we’ve shared a house (his). I’ve gotten better at it. I’ve (mostly) stopped feeling like a visitor. I’ve mostly stopped treating him like he’s my guest and expecting that he treats me like I am his. We both threw stuff out. Some of my stuff is here. Some stuff we bought together to make the house accommodate both of us. During his three week work trip, the place felt as much my own as the previous placed I have lived.

Still, I suck at relaxing with another person in the house. Whenever there is someone else around, a part of me always remains focused on them. It wears me out. It makes for regular supplying Beloved with coffee and tea and cuddles, but it’s not very healthy for me. I’m pretty sure a large part of my long-term tiredness relates to this inability of mine.

I better fix it. Have any tips?

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