It’s a classic for young people. Still in school, or freshly graduated, many young people will share their first apartment. Yet nothing says that this practical idea is exclusive to young people! It’s a good idea for all ages!
Housing costs are rising all over the world. For those who live alone, the financial burden of rent is enormous and sometimes disabling. It eats up such a high percentage of the budget that there isn’t much room left for other expenses, let alone hobbies. So many single people opt for a second job or move to poor-quality housing, which is not very good for the rest of the soul or the joy of the spirit. However, there is another solution that is not often considered when we get older: roommates.
Yes, it’s true, with age we become less flexible in our daily lives. We like to have our meals at a certain time, in a certain way. We have decorated our home to our liking; we don’t want to be disturbed too much. We don’t want to be told what to do, especially not in our house! However, many singles say they would like to get married. When this wonderful person comes into our lives, then we will have to compromise to meet each other’s tastes, adjust to each other’s schedules, and accept some criticism.
So why not practice right away! Having a roommate not only allows us to reduce our housing costs but also helps us to practice making compromises, and sharing our space and our daily lives. It’s also a great way to break the silence that can sometimes weigh heavily on singles and share household chores to free up our schedule a little more. And don’t believe that because you love your husband or wife that it will be magically easy to live with someone. The emotions won’t always be there; you will have to make many concessions also when you are married. So practicing with a roommate during our celibacy is extremely formative.
We are not saying you need to go live with a stranger! You can pitch the idea to someone you know very well. Have you thought of someone in your family? Two sisters can very well live together. Or maybe you have a nephew or niece who needs to be closer to their school. You could offer to host them, with financial compensation. You may have developed a good friendship with another member of your congregation, it could be very uplifting to share your home with another child of God. Obviously, to keep our thoughts pure and not fall into fornication, it is better to look for a person of the same sex as us. It’s also good to write down the rules of the house: a list that you will establish together, both making compromises. You can then review these rules together from time to time to adjust what needs to be changed.
Just because you’re over 40 or retired doesn’t mean you can’t do this adjustment exercise. Don’t dismiss the idea just because it would require too much sacrifice. God calls us to a life of sacrifice, and this, at all ages. And the benefits of this sacrifice are truly significant. So, at least take the time to think about it!