Clean a Conflict for Men

Libby Hill

Libby Hill

Dear Libby,

My roommate is a complete neat freak and I am not. This makes it incredibly hard for us to get along.

At our apartment, luckily, we each have a bedroom. Mine is a pit, the way I like it, and his is immaculate, the way he likes it.

The problem is the shared living space. I would like to be able to leave some things in the kitchen, living room and bathroom that I feel I have a right to leave in these spaces, since they are half mine. However, anything short of the couch and the sink needs to be, in his mind, put away.

Do you think it’s unreasonable for me to want to leave my shoes by the door instead of in my room? And a magazine or newspaper on the coffee table? And a tube of toothpaste on the bathroom sink?

If so, let me know so I can change my ways. But if not, how do I make my roommate see that this is a normal, healthy way to live?

– Guest in my own home

Dear Guest,