Most of us have lived with roommates at some point, and while it can be helpful financially, the majority walk away with complaints about the experience.
These complaints frequently involve shared responsibilities around the house or utilizing shared spaces, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Because the living room did not contain any furniture, Redditor lavenderloverr discussed with her roommates the possibility of installing a pole to practice pole dancing, to which they agreed.
But once they began to move more into the space, the Original Poster (OP) was furious when her roommates wanted to redecorate.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my roommate my stripper pole is staying in the living room?”
The OP wanted to start up a new hobby, using the living room she shared with roommates.
“A few months ago, I (20 Female) decided I wanted to take up pole dancing.”
“I told my roommates Amanda (20 Female) and Holly (26 Female) that I was thinking of getting a stripper pole and installing it in the living room, and they said go ahead.”
“We had no furniture at the time, so this pole was installed in an empty living room.”
She was frustrated when her roommates later wanted to update the room.
“A little while later, since nobody else was getting furniture, I got a couch off Facebook Marketplace.”
“Holly also got a TV for the living room.”
“Right after we got the TV, Holly demanded that we move the pole out of the backside of the living room so that the TV and couch could fit in the corner where the pole already is.”
“I was confused by her request because the couch was already placed close to the center of the living room and there was an outlet available for the TV to go in front of the couch.”
“I asked Holly why she wanted to move it into the corner, and she said because she wants a ‘cozy little nook.'”
The OP had reservations about the change.
“I told her that the pole is quite difficult to move and install, and the pole being in its existing spot gives me enough room; the new spot she suggested would have me slightly in the way of the hallway, and I couldn’t tell if there was a stud where she wants to move it to.”
“Because of those reasons, I told Holly kindly that I wouldn’t be moving the pole. and the couch can stay where it is on the other side of the living room.”
“Partly because I own the couch, and since she simply asked me, I’m allowed to say no.”
Tension rose between the roommates.
“She didn’t respond well to this. She contacted our rental company and told them that we had an ‘unauthorized stripper pole’ in our unit that no one agreed to.”
“An administrator came to our unit and told me that the pole needed to be removed.”
“I was obviously p**sed she snitched on me, so I told Holly if she still wants her ‘cozy little nook,’ she can get her own couch. I’m restricting her from using mine.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some called the OP the AH because she wanted the pole in a common living area.
“It is a communal space. They all pay to use that space. That’s all that matters here.”
“When I used to live with roommates, I often wanted things done my way in the communal spaces, until I got into a big fight with one of my best friends over it (I wanted him to keep the communal space clean).”
“I realized that it is not just my space, even for something like keeping it clean up to my standards, but that he paid for that space too. If he didn’t mind a dirty floor or the occasional wrapper being left out, I had two options, either deal with it or move out, because I couldn’t punish him. I wasn’t his mom. It wasn’t only my house.”
“I think it’s YTA for the OP because it is not just her space. Her roommates are paying for that living room too, they each get an equal say. It sucks, I get it, but that’s living with roommates. You don’t live with them because it’s better, you live with them because it’s cheaper. You don’t get to take up a part of the communal living space unless everyone agrees.”
“And they can also change their mind whenever they want because they pay for that space with you. You would not have that space without them.”
“So she told her roommate ‘no’ when she asked to rearrange the living room. It’s not her space to solely dictate how it’s arranged, regardless of if in the past the roommates agreed to it. This is why people think she’s TA.” – LongwellGreen
“The pole was fine at that time because nobody had furniture, but the room isn’t just yours, and a d**n pole in the middle of the room is just bad. Put the pole in your room, not in the common space. They have all the right to ask you to remove the pole now that the furniture is here.”
“You are mad that they snitched? Then next time, don’t be an a**. Take your pole (which is illegal it seems) and your couch to your room, and good luck trying to use the TV now.” – SadLikeAWall
“The living room is a common space. And you had it installed before the furniture was put in, to me, feels like you’re trying to stake your claim on the whole room. If I was Holly, I’d be annoyed too.”
“Feels like you girls won’t be living together for that much longer.” – defein88
“The pole had to be installed (permanently attached) to the unit and you didn’t get permission from the landlord.”
“You didn’t think about the fact that SHARED spaces can have their usage changed and roommates can change their minds at anytime.”
“And you acted like a spoiled child by not compromising on a SHARED space and then banning the usage of property in a shared space.”
“Just a suggestion: get your own place.” – Traditional-Rain-574
“I think if I were one of the roommates, I would have said ‘yes’ to the stripper pole, not thinking that it would be considered a permanent, unmovable fixture. I’d be saying ‘Yes, for now,’ not ‘Yes, forever.'”
“The OP is essentially claiming rights to the whole room on the bulls**t argument that everyone agreed to this. They did not. They agreed to the stripper pole being in the living room at a time when no else was using the room. They did not agree that they would have to permanently give up their rights to the living room to accommodate the OP’s enjoyment of the stripper pole.”
“‘Living room rights’ include being able to set up a cozy little nook when the space allows it.”
“Now, I kind of think the ‘cozy little nook’ roommate was ballsy to want to commandeer the OP’s couch for this particular goal. She can go find her own furniture to create the nook. But she’s not wrong for wanting to create a nook. Her rent entitles her to use the living room, nooks and all.”
“A stripper pole shouldn’t have primacy over that right. The living room is not the OP’s personal workout studio. I don’t see why this is being treated like rocket science.”
“YTA.” – autotelica
“OP, I pole dance as a hobby, so I understand the kind of space you need when you install a pole.”
“And I’m going with YTA. It’s a shared living space. Even if you bought the couch, it’s not only your space.”
“I have a pole up in my house, that I own with my fiancé. I would have significantly more space if I put the pole in our living room. But I would be an AH to expect him to deal with a random pole in the living room when that’s the place you usually entertain guests. So, my pole is in another room, and while it’s not the space I would like, it’ll do.”
“Find a pole studio and ask to use their space if you can’t deal with the space you have.” – Celestial_Unicorn_
Others found everyone in the situation to be at fault.
“I’m confused about all the Y-T-A comments. The living room is a communal space but no one was using it which is why OP set up the pole. Now when she bought a couch, Holly decided to buy a TV.”
“OP had no issues with Holly using her couch and was fine with the setup until Holly decided to want to move the couch into OP’s space because she wanted a ‘cozy little nook’ and not for any practical reason.”
“Instead of trying to find a compromise with OP when OP said that Holly’s solution to move the pole would make the pole more of an issue by being in front of the main hallway, Holly decided to tattle because she didn’t get her way.”
“While OP could’ve handled this situation better, Holly brought it to a whole new level. So OP has every right to not allow her on the couch she bought if Holly isn’t going to treat her with respect.”
“ESH.” – ILoveMyExistantSon
“You’re TA because you are unwilling to compromise in a shared living space. The pole was okay in the living room until you got furniture, now you don’t have an empty room, so it makes sense for your roommate(s) to want to use the living room for its intended purpose.”
“Your roommate is TA because she went to property management instead of trying to work with you on finding a compromise.” – Bold_Phoenix
“ESH. I don’t get the Y T A votes.”
“You asked first they were fine with it. They didn’t want it to go away, they just wanted to move it into the same room, but neither of you were willing to check if it was movable. She could have offered to do the leg work for you.”
“No one else bought furniture so it’s unreasonable for one person to dictate where your furniture goes. It’s a communal area so placement should be agreed upon, but it does sound like where the couch is, is the more reasonable placement.”
“You both suck for your pettiness but since she lied to the leasing office and could have gotten you fined or kicked out, I don’t blame you for being petty honestly. I wouldn’t want her lying butt on my couch either, and I definitely wouldn’t be moving it around so she could gain her nook when she did all of this in such an entitled way.”
“I’d just sell the couch though, because next she won’t let you use the TV, and it will be harder for you to prevent the couches use than her the TV’s.”
“I don’t recommend resigning the lease for another year.” – empathetic_tomatoes
“ESH. You’re all immature and obviously don’t know how to communicate.”
“Yes, they did initially agree, but you ALL live there. It’s an open living space, not to mention you weren’t even allowed to install one there…”
“But your roommate was also very immature. She’s acting like a child when they don’t get what they want. But so did you, by not allowing her to use the couch. Like, seriously?”
“You all suck here and need to check yourselves. you’re acting like children and you clearly won’t last living together.” – pikaiiichu
“ESH. You both seem super immature and I feel bad that Amanda has to live with this silly pettiness.”
“The living room is a shared area. Your pole wasn’t a problem at first, but now it is, and you have to reassess the situation to accommodate for the people who pay to use this shared space.”
“The pole is difficult to move, but not impossible, so you’re just being lazy.”
“Holly should have had a grown-up conversation with you about the pole and instead of snitching the second you said no.”
“For the sake of your living arrangement, find a way to make nice with Holly. If you restrict her from the couch, she will obviously restrict you from the TV. Do you really want to deal with drama every day?” – Hippopotapussy
“ESH. Look, I’m a pole dancer, my sister is a pole dancer, and heck, I work at a pole studio. I do have a pole in my living room, but it took a lot of talking to my sister for us to find a good place for it.”
“Yes, it’s your couch, yes, it’s your pole, but the living room is a common space. You don’t own the entire living room.” – Neither-Candy-545
Though everyone could understand the OP having a new hobby and wanting to be able to practice it in her home, they also understood that she was living in a shared apartment and wanted to keep her hobby in a communal space. If she wanted to have the pole in her bedroom, her roommates would arguably have nothing to be upset about.