An un­wel­come guest

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - YOUR DAILY BREAK - An­nie Lane

On one day’s no­tice, my hus­band’s col­lege friend — let’s call him “Will” — asked whether he could “crash” with us for two nights. I as­sumed that meant he was com­ing to town on other busi­ness and just needed a place to sleep — which would have been OK, even though I’m up against a work dead­line, be­cause I wouldn’t have had to be a proper host.

When he ar­rived hold­ing a suit­case that looked large enough for a month­long cruise, I got a lit­tle ner­vous. Now he’s been here for five days. And aside from a cou­ple of hours here and there, he hasn’t left the house. He’s just been hang­ing out in our liv­ing room.

I work from home, and he keeps com­ing into my of­fice to chat dur­ing the day and ask ran­dom ques­tions. He’s a nice, funny guy whom I would en­joy spend­ing time with un­der other cir­cum­stances. But I feel as if my per­sonal space has been in­vaded, and that’s a big pet peeve of mine.

After Will had been here for a day, my hus­band pri­vately com­plained to me some about his be­hav­ior (putting his feet up on the ta­ble, ly­ing on the couch, leav­ing a mess in the bath­room), but I told him to let it go. Now I’m the one who’s an­noyed, and my hus­band has pretty much tuned it all out. Yes­ter­day and to­day I asked him, “Isn’t Will leav­ing to­day?” He just shrugged.

I don’t want to be rude or in­hos­pitable to a friend of my hus­band’s (though it turns out they were never that close and have hardly kept in touch since grad­u­at­ing). But I re­ally would like some pri­vacy back. How can I tact­fully drop the hint that he’s over­stayed his wel­come? — No Va­cancy

Some­one needs to take the bull by the horns here, be­fore that bull turns your whole house into his own per­sonal pas­ture.

You have two op­tions. You can tell your hus­band that it is time to tune back in and tell his friend that he has to find an­other place to stay by the end of the week, or you can tell Will your­self. Any­one who would say he is stay­ing for only two days and then stay for five (with­out leav­ing the house at all) doesn’t seem the type to have an exit plan un­less he is pushed to. So push him. It’s time for this house­guest to find an­other nest.

I’m writ­ing in re­sponse to the let­ter from “Smell You Later,” as well as your re­ply, which, for the most part, was a good one. For quite a few years, I suf­fered from hav­ing bad breath. It was very dis­con­cert­ing, see­ing as I was con­stantly brush­ing my teeth. It turned out that a lack of brush­ing was not the is­sue. It was the fact that I was not floss­ing. I never re­al­ized that the food that got stuck between my teeth was the cul­prit — rot­ting and caus­ing my hal­i­to­sis. Once I started floss­ing and us­ing a proxy brush, the prob­lem dis­ap­peared and has never re­turned. Be­sides stop­ping the bad breath, the prac­tice also put an end to all the cav­i­ties I used to get. I al­ways thought I went to a good den­tist, but ob­vi­ously he was not good enough to em­pha­size the im­por­tance of floss­ing and clean­ing between my teeth.

You have two op­tions. You can tell your hus­band that it is time to tune back in and tell his friend that he has to find an­other place to stay by the end of the week, or you can tell Will your­self.

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