View Full Version : What to Do About My Roommie and His Girlfriend

04-18-2009, 12:49 AM
Ok, it's the end of the school year. In two weeks, I'll never see the guy again. But I have a moral issue that I still have trouble with: how he treats his girlfriend/fiance/whatever they currently are.

He basically just verbally abuses her all the time. Every time he is talking to her on the phone, he's calls her stupid, tells her to "Shut the fuck up", dumbass, etc. etc. Apparently, he told her to call him around a certain time today, and she called mad late, because she was at work or something. So he berated her on the phone, calling her stupid, lazy. Told her he's no longer going to visit her tonight. And this is typical of what always happens. He just yells and yells at her. Loudly. My neighbor, a RA on my dorm's floor, can hear it, but she never says anything. One of the last times his girlfriend was actually over, I was out. I later found out he got so loud while yelling at her that multiple people called Public Safety (campus police) and my RA told him to shut up and wrote him up (a.k.a. slap on the wrist that is laughable).

So yea, I feel bad for her for putting up with it. It sounds like they've been together for a few years, and she likes him enough to get engaged to him, but still, I don't think anyone should put up with that kind of abuse. What should I do?

Evil Queen
04-18-2009, 12:52 AM
If she's dumb enough to stay with an ass like that, she probably deserves him.

Yes, I know, that was mean to say but by now HER friends have probably tried their damnest to make her see the light. How long have they been dating? Or do you know?

04-18-2009, 01:07 AM
How long have they been dating? Or do you know?

Years is all I know.

Evil Queen
04-18-2009, 01:21 AM

Greenday. I believe she may be a hopeless cause.

God, I can't believe I said that. :no:

04-18-2009, 01:25 AM
Unfortunately there's probably not a lot you can do. You can tell him what you think of the way he treats her, and you can tell her she deserves better, but in the end it's their lives. For whatever reasons, they've learned that this is acceptable behavior, and that's a hard thing to change.

04-18-2009, 01:28 AM
It's very hard to get involved in something like that. Really you'd be doing her a favour if you got her to see the light and leave, but she won't see it that way. It's just interfering. EQ is probably right that HER friends have already tried to make her see. She won't want to hear from her boyfriend's roomie.

If you're never seeing these people again in two weeks time, I guess just don't worry about it. Maybe, at most, if guilt drives you to say anything, mention to her quietly if you ever get a moment alone with her that you'd never treat a partner the way he does, or stay with someone treating you the way he treats her. Not as "advice", just as "conversation". At least then your conscience knows you did *something*. Said *something*. If he beats her to death in two years time, you know you didn't just walk away and leave it.

04-18-2009, 01:34 AM
I wasn't thinking of saying anything to her. I was thinking more of saying something to him.

04-18-2009, 01:43 AM
I wasn't thinking of saying anything to her. I was thinking more of saying something to him.

Go for it if you want. I wouldn't have too much hope of it making any difference, but most people probably just look the other way. He deserves to hear what an asshole he is.

There's also the whole disturbing the rest of the hall aspect...

04-18-2009, 02:00 AM
There's also the whole disturbing the rest of the hall aspect...

Eh, it's not like a 24-hour quite dorm...wait a second, it is!?

04-18-2009, 02:12 AM
Eh, it's not like a 24-hour quite dorm...wait a second, it is!?

Even if it's not, there's a little something called common courtesy. The dorms at my college had quiet hours from 11pm (midnight on Friday and Saturday) until 8am, and starting at midnight on the Friday before finals week it was 24-hour quiet hours until finals were over. Even so, we mostly tried not to be unreasonably loud the rest of the time (well, most of us :rolleyes:).

04-18-2009, 02:28 AM
Well, I picked this dorm because it is a 24-hour quiet dorm. I enjoy the piece and quiet. All the other dorms, have quiet hours from 10pm-10am Sunday through Thursday and 12am-10am Friday and Saturday. But when it's not quiet hours, we have something called courtesy hours, which is all the time. Courtesy hours basically means if you can ever be heard two doors down, you are too loud.

04-18-2009, 02:34 AM
Honestly, from living with several roommates that I didn't really like, all you can do is wait it out.

IF you want to say something, maybe try striking up a conversation about it after he calls her one time. Maybe asking about how he talks to her.

Warning, it may make the rest of your living together a real hell, and it's awkward when the person you're sharing a tiny bedroom with 24/7 and you don't get along. Trust me, I know.

It might be easier for you to not say anything, but if you feel the need, approach with caution.

Irving Patrick Freleigh
04-18-2009, 02:39 AM
I'd say nothing. I don't think anything good could come from saying anything.

Chances might be good you'll end up coming to blows, and your roomie's attitude toward his girlfriend wouldn't change.

04-18-2009, 03:22 AM
There's not much that can be done for her unfortunately, because you can't help those who can't help themselves.

04-18-2009, 05:22 AM
There are ads here on TV about domestic violence and getting over and getting help. The guy on a particular one says he abused his wife until his mates had the balls one day to say "Hey, bro, that's not okay". They talked about what he did, and he came to realise what he was doing and why it was so wrong. He's very proud that his mates actually stood up and said something to him rather than letting it go.

Now, that said, he's probably a minority. In 99.9% of cases, telling the abuser how you see their actions will only lead to an extreme defensive mode - and what's the best defence? You know it.

So what to do? Say something? Not? I agree that if you have to share a very small college bedroom with this guy, not pissing him off is a strategic game plan. Maybe hold it in for the last day. While you're packing up to leave, mention to him what you think of how he treats his girl, and wish him the courage to be a real man, even if it means getting help. If he reacts badly, you've got about 3 minutes left with him anyway. Just leave.

04-18-2009, 05:53 AM
If it will make you feel better to call him on it, call him on it. Just as long as you understand that it won't do a thing to change things. Because it won't.

04-18-2009, 12:29 PM
Abusers rarely change and if she's been with him for years he has her convinced he's the best she'll get and she can't get along w/o him.
I was able to see the light and get out, but many don't.

04-18-2009, 12:53 PM
Keep in mind that anything you do say to him, will almost certainly rebound on her. She's his dumping ground for everything bad that has ever happened in his life, and if you criticize his actions, he'll take it out on her. He's probably abusing her physically as well as verbally, because she's letting him treat her like shit. It's all too easy for me to imagine what he'd do to her.

If you do say something, I agree with those who suggested doing it on your way out. Speak to him in a low voice, don't invade his space, and let him know that you've seen the way he treats his girlfriend, that this isn't the way you behave with someone you love, that you're worried for both of them, that neither of them will ever be happy as long as this behavior continues, and that if he ever needs to talk about things that are bothering him, he can call you. It may just save her a beating... or save her life.

04-18-2009, 01:05 PM

Greenday. I believe she may be a hopeless cause.

God, I can't believe I said that. :no:

It may seem cold and heartless...but I agree. If she stays...its her problem.

She's a volunteer, not a victim.

04-18-2009, 02:22 PM
You can't help those who won't help themselves. The sad truth may be that there is not a damn thing you can do.

That being said, before you look out for her or him, you have to look out for yourself. So if you do say something, say it on your way out. My suggestion: on the last day, as you hoist your last bag over your shoulder, tell him just what you think of him and his behavior....and then walk away, knowing that what you said probably will have no effect and you will probably never deal with these two ever again.

04-20-2009, 05:40 PM
In the same line as Jester, wait till you're leaving and say

"You know, it's not my place to say anything, but I can't help but wonder what in the world your girl sees in you. If someone spoke to me like you do to her, I'd kick them to the curb"

And then just keep walking.

04-21-2009, 03:50 AM
Yep, he's not going to change, and she's an idiot for staying with him. You can't help those who won't help themselves.

Of course, there's always the *reverse* situation. I knew a guy in college, who had a girlfriend...who would beat the crap out of him. Seriously--it seemed that the smallest things would set her off, and she'd not only scream at him, but usually hit him as well. Not really much we could do...and yes, it did get worse. Junior year, she nearly choked him :eek:

Did he dump her ass? Of course not. Things got even more bizarre after that. What was odd, is that if they were alone, both were fine--they were pleasant to be around. It was only when they were together, that trouble started.

The most bizarre event...had to be towards the end of our sophomore year. Seems that he was working in one of the computer labs one night, and for some reason, the building's door got locked. His G/F was looking for him, and rather than wait until he was off work....climbed the fire escape in order to be with him :eek:

I wish I was making that up, but several people told me about it...including one of the security guards! Anyway, for the rest of the year, we couldn't resist imitating Beavis & Butthead "Fire, fire fire... heh heh..." Did they get the joke? Of course not. Hell, they even did it with us!

I mean, we tried to like him, respect him, etc. But, it was difficult, simply because he (and pardon my French) needed to grow some fucking balls.

From what I understand now, they're married and have a family. I have no idea if things have settled down, but I've heard rumors that they haven't. In fact, a few people have told me that their roles have flip-flopped :(

04-21-2009, 05:26 PM
Yes, they probably won't change, whatever Greenday says.

However, I know some of us (definitely me) would not have changed our destructive behaviors without family, friends, aquaintances, strangers & brutal realities kicking us in the teeth repeatedly.

Greenday, do what you choose to do, not for them, but because the kind of person you want to be will not walk on by in silence.

04-21-2009, 09:11 PM
Unfortunately, there's really nothing you CAN do, unless you've seen him hit or physically abuse her. Then you could call the cops. But unless that happens, it's up to her to do something about it.

04-21-2009, 09:38 PM
Your roommate and his girlfriend didn't happen to move from Vermont did they? I swear you're describing one of my ex-roommates.