Allowing a friend or a family member to move into your home is a sensitive enough subject on its own.
But when your roommate goes through a major lifestyle change, the situation may become much more difficult to live with.
Reddit user "JumpyTicket4" thought she had worked out a decent living situation with her little sister.
But as she shared in the "Am I the A$hole?" subReddit, a stable arrangement can go from good and workable, to an expensive headache, in what feels like a heartbeat.
"So I feel terrible and guilty but I also feel like I have no choice. Looking for advice and unbiased judgment."
"I have a younger sister (26) who's disabled. I won't get into it but she's unable to work a full time job and is on disability, which isn't much. She's been living with me for ~3 years. I pay for nearly everything including groceries but she chips in for utilities or takeout once in a while."
"Last year she started dating a guy and got very serious very quickly. He's underemployed with social anxiety and lives off of a little money his parents send him each month. He also moved in with us a few months back. I live in a larger house so didn't mind 2 more people at the time."
But it turns out, their relationship was more serious than she realized.
"Two weeks ago my sister told me she was pregnant. I was shocked. She said she's around 1.5 months along and they're excited to be parents. I didn't know how to react and sat on it for a few days before approaching both of them and saying that I can't have them raising a baby in my home."
"I basically support both of them at this stage, letting them use their own money (again, not much) for leisure things like movies or video games. I asked them how they plan on paying for a baby and they didn't think it was a big deal. I imagine if the baby comes I'll probably end up paying for all 3 of them."
She decided to confront them, but the conversation didn't go the way she expected.
"In the end I told both of them that they can stay with me until the baby comes, but I don't want a baby in my home and the huge amount of responsibility that will probably fall to me. My sister cried and her bf accused me of being two faced, because they have nowhere else to go."
"I offered to help them pay rent for the first few months and budget for them but they're resistant. My sister is now saying I'm essentially forcing them to give up their baby by kicking them out. I feel bad but I feel like if this keeps going I'll be supporting an entire family on my own for who knows how long. AITA?"
She also clarified in the comments section that their income was not the sole concern.
"The issue is it isn't just money either. They're both incredibly dependent on me driving them places, buying their groceries, running everyday errands."
"My sister can't drive and her bf can't leave the house most days. They would have no way of getting their baby to basic doctors appointments much less anything else. They are also extremely untidy people and can't cook to save their lives. I have no idea how they could even raise a child and never expected them to jump into parenthood like this." - JumpyTicket4
Her fellow Redditors were quick to tell her she was not in the wrong for asking them to find a new place to live.
In fact, most thought the situation was more telling of how the couple was taking advantage of her.
"[Not The A$hole] (NTA). They're manipulating you straight up." - 612957151520
"They have 8.5 months to figure something out. Given most places need a 30day eviction process they will be fine. Recommend finding support from low income assistance programs and tell then to have fun."
"OP even if you are reading this if (goodness forbid) something happens and she is no longer pregnant don't back down! Tell them the end date is the same. Otherwise she will miraculously not tell you if she is pregnant again and will say she was afraid of your response." - pyneapplepyro
"7.5 but I agree. That's long enough to figure something out. There's a lot of assistance programs that will help with rent and groceries." - acembsss
"No no no no NO."
"They have exactly 5 months to 'figure something out'."
"Does anyone SERIOUSLY believe these people won't use "we can't move she just went into labor" as an excuse?" - ColdSnowyPeeked
"This is a very well-spoken point. They really did show you their true intentions of just trying to mooch off of you and, from what I'm reading, don't seem to want to accept any responsibility for their lives (evidenced by them not accepting your offer to help them move out and pay for the first few months)."
"This is a time for tough love and you're literally giving them well over 7-8 months to figure something out. If that's long enough to create a whole human, it's long enough to find another place to live and set up conditions to support that new human. Wish you the best, and NTA." - imsohungrydude
"Especially because they'd supposedly have to give up the baby if they move out. If you have to give up the baby to live by yourselves, you are admitting that OP would HAVE to pay for the baby to some extent. NTA" - buggle_bunny
Boundaries are very difficult to enforce when friends or family live under the same roof. But when income sources are blended, and a new baby is on the way, it's important to discuss how the new arrival impacts the entire household.
In some cases, the situation may still be workable. But for this Redditor, hopefully she'll be able to use the feedback she received to confidently discuss with the couple a solution that works for everyone.
In this case, that probably involves living under more than one roof.
The book Where to Draw the Line: How to Set Healthy Boundaries Every Day is available here.