For the last 2 years, when I've explained my living situation to people most times they shake their head and call me crazy. Not that this is a unique reaction to just my housing predicament, but it's one I'm used to in that regard. In roughly December of 2009, my marriage was emotionally over. For financial reasons, we decided the paperwork needed to hold off until we could get a few things handled. We would live like single people under the same roof. Weird to you, practical for me.
Sometime in April, I believe, my ex-husband had been with his new girlfriend several months when she lost her job, her apartment, and he car all in a 6 week period. She had nowhere to go. None of her friends would take her in. Even her parents told her that she wasn't welcome in their home as anything but an occasional guest. She ended up in the storage room of her best friend's mom's house. It was cold, cramped, and hardly fit to be a bedroom.
After a few weeks of fighting over who had to watch the animals because we were both spending so much time away from the house, I asked Fuzzy if it would make his life easier if she moved into the house. That way, they could be together, the dogs would have someone to watch them, and I could continue to cavort. See? Practical. Besides, I didn't dislike her at the time. We were actually, surprisingly pretty good friends.
In the end the requirement we'd struck with regard to her living in the house without a job wasn't met. I have many thoughts on the matter, but the least inflammatory thing I can say is that she ended up being a co-dependent freeloader with a martyr complex. Once the financial loose ends were tied up and the paperwork signed by a judge, they moved out. The last item on the place it dispensing with the house. And those gears are churning as we speak.
Now, those who know me might stop and ask "Um, sweetie, isn't your current roommate unemployed?" Well, yes. No. Wait. Back up. He WAS when he moved in. The deal was, I wasn't paying the mortgage, so charging rent was a little absurd. Between now and whenever I am forced to move, he's got time to find something. For now, help around the house, someone to keep the dogs company and attended to, and someone to share a meal with now and again is what I'm asking. Those needs are being met so I'm happy. It's the barter system. That, and he starts new employee orientation for his part time job on Tuesday.
I suppose some might ask why I put up with people living off of me. Well, I don't see it that way. Nor do I see it as charity in an effort to feel better about myself. I see it as I have something I can offer that does me no harm to share. It is a risk/reward situation I'm comfortable with. If you really want to pick at it, I suppose you could tell me that it's a form of usury on my part. Ok, I can see that. And I can be ok with that being the perception. However, symbiotes exist in nature as they do under my roof.