Change is the only constant in the whole universe.
Stars explode, planets die and flowers grow.
So, what happens when the circumstances of someone’s life change rapidly and you’re left holding the bag?
That was the issue facing Redditor and Original Poster (OP) aita1231 when he came to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for judgment.
“AITA for evicting a tenant because they got pregnant?”
OP began with a disclaimer.
“Yes, I know the title sounds awful, but please do hear me out before making a judgement. I will accept whatever judgement I’m given.”
Then he gave some important background.
“I (30 male) purchased a 3 bedroom condo in Toronto, Canada 5 years ago when I was in my second year of medical residency.”
“Soon after the purchase, I rented one of the rooms to my roommate (female 29) to offset the costs of the mortgage.”
“I live in one room, she lives in the second, and the third is my study/office.”
“She has been a great roommate from the beginning. We aren’t necessarily friends (as in we don’t do things together for fun), but we get along exceptionally well.”
Everything was fine, until…
“The entire roommate/tenant relationship has gone swimmingly up until recently.”
“A couple of weeks ago, my roommate broke the news to me that she is pregnant.”
“The father was a fling of hers, who does not want anything to do with the child. My roommate has decided she wants to keep the child anyways, and raise it on her own.”
“To me that seems like a huge challenge, and I admire her for it.”
“The issue is, while I don’t necessarily dislike children, I have no desire to live with a baby.”
“While the condo is a fair size, I will most definitely be woken up by the babies crying at night.”
“My condo is also where I like to come home to and relax, like a haven after a long work day, and the idea of coming home to a baby honestly seems absolutely chaotic.”
“Especially since this isn’t my own child (ie one that my girlfriend and I decided to have/was mentally prepared for).”
“As difficult as it was for me to do this, I told my her essentially what I’ve written here, and that it would be best if she finds somewhere else to live.”
“I am not rushing her out or anything like that, I have given her 6 month’s notice, since any later than that will come too close to the birth.”
OP did try to see things from his tenant’s perspective.
“She was honestly quite taken aback by this, and thought that I was being cruel.”
“Her primary concern is that rent has gone up substantially in this city since she signed on with me (I haven’t increased her rent since she moved in, so she’s essentially paying 2015 rent).”
“She works as a waitress, and will likely need to find a lesser apartment to keep within the same budget.”
“A couple of other considerations are that she was out of work while restaurants were closed, but I did waive her rent for that period.”
“All of the furniture is also mine (aside from her bedroom), so she would need to figure something out on that front as well, aside from all of the child expenses.”
“I understand her position, and I feel horrible about the situation, but I honestly can’t do it.”
OP was left to wonder,
“AITA for this?”
Having explained the situation, OP turned to Reddit for judgment.
Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors decided: NTA
Some wanted to help.
“If she’s not super attached to her current employer, rent is way cheaper in Hamilton.”
“(I know because I live in Hamilton but grew up in the GTA).”
“There are tons of restaurants downtown, we have a great food scene so I’m sure she could get a job here fairly easily.”
“And her rent is more likely to match the value of the space she’s living in than it would in Toronto.”
“I live downtown just a 5 min walk from the GO station and it actually takes me less time to get to Union from Hamilton than it did from my parents place in R. Hill.”
“I hope she’s able to find a good place soon! If Hamilton is something that might work for her, message me and I don’t mind helping her look for a place here!” ~ tonks2016
Not everyone was so compassionate toward the roommate.
“The roommate is an asshole. Anyone who chooses to be a single parent when they can’t even afford their own apartment is an asshole.”
“She actually expected to raise her child in a single rented room? That poor child is going to have a shitty life because of her shitty choices.” ~ Vallaris24
“I’m not gonna call her an AH but I don’t understand why someone would have a baby in these circumstances before we’ve even seen the light at the end of the tunnel with respect to Covid.”
“I’ve lived in Toronto, NY, LA, and Tokyo and Toronto was by far the hardest city to live in, I can’t imagine being a single mom waitress in that city AND DURING A PANDEMIC.” ~ tequilaearworm
Some were very direct.
“There is no money or friendship in the world that would make me live with another baby.”
“I’ve had two, and only stayed with them because they were mine. They suck.” ~ Gibodean
“It’s your property and you can do with it as you like – within reason.”
“You are living in the same building and don’t want to be disturbed by a newborn.”
“Six months is a huge period of time to find a new place to live.” ~ abyssalcrisis
OP did return with several updates.
“Thank you to everyone who has commented.”
“There have been two great suggestions on how I can make this situation better, which I have taken to heart.”
“I haven’t been able to give life much thought lately, as work has been quite busy.”
“Firstly, I have a friend in real estate, and I’m going to see if they can help her try to find some affordable listings.”
“Secondly – as I don’t plan to take on another tenant after her, and can afford to do this anyway – I have decided I’m going to waive her rent for the remainder of the tenancy.”
“This will hopefully give her a bit of a boost to get on her feet”
“I’m just checking on this for the first time today.”
“My god, I was not expecting anywhere near this many replies.”
“Thank you to everyone who has commented. I am about to head into surgery, but I will do my best to get back to as many people as I can later today.”
“I am honestly overwhelmed by the amount of attention this has gotten.”
“Thank you everyone that commented, regardless of your opinion.”
“I was planning to reply to as many posts as possible, but honestly seeing as there are over 2000 comments, I think I will have to just address some common questions here.”
“I also have an update on the situation, and I wish everyone that’s commented so far could receive notification to read it.”
“To anyone asking about the legality of the matter, I consulted an attorney to be 1000% sure, and this is perfectly legal. Since I live in the unit, the eviction laws are much more lenient.”
“To anyone that said I should allow her to live with me anyway, I challenge you to consider what the alternative would be.”
“If this doesn’t happen now, then when? Her baby will become a toddler, and a toddler eventually becomes a school-age child.”
“Will it really be any better to do this later on? Or do you suggest that I let her raise the child here until they are 18?”
OP even came back with a final resolution.
“Finally, the update:”
“When I came home from work today, I told her that I wanted to discuss the overall situation.”
“Before I even began, she actually apologized to me for how she spoke to me, and for expecting that I would be okay for her to raise her child here.”
“I told her that her apology is totally unnecessary, as her reaction was completely understandable considering the uncertainty of her future. I then told her that what I told all of you;”
“That I would waive her rent for the remainder of her stay to help her get on her feet. She pushed back on this at first, but after I urged her to think of her child, she graciously accepted.”
“Aside from this, I also told her about my friend who could help her out with finding some affordable listings in the area. I thought I might be overstepping there, but she was actually extremely thankful and said she would take me up on there.”
“Finally, I want to thank u/tuttipeachyfrutti for probably the best piece of advice that I’ve read (I’m sure there are many more people that I should be thanking, but I honestly don’t think I’ll be able to read everything here).”
“This was that I could help her obtain a more reliable work position at my hospital, nothing fancy as she doesn’t have any schooling, but it will be much more secure than waitressing (and once you’re in, there’s always ways to work your way up).”
“There would also be benefits/maternity leave that I don’t think restaurants usually offer.”
“This was probably my biggest risk of overstepping, but when I mentioned the idea to her she was actually over the moon (tears were shed…).”
“I do agree that I acted in self-interest here, so I think it’s the least I can do to make sure this soon to be mother and her child have some sense of security in their lives.”
“Thank you again to everyone.”
“***This isn’t an edit, but more of a request. Does anyone here know if it’s possible to change your title to include something like ‘updated’.”
“I really want everyone that commented to know that they all made a huge impact on a new mothers life. I can’t thank you enough, very glad that I made this post.”
Change is the only constant.
We can only do our best to keep up with it, to plan for it, or to mitigate it.
For us and those who rely on us.