General Question

trinitymat's avatar

Is it okay if I beat my roommate up?

Asked by trinitymat (94points) January 21st, 2014

As you can see from my previous question, I’ve had enough. Your answers were very helpful. I have talked to her more than 20 times before and she never listens, and very recently my father talked to her asking for her father’s e-mail. She didn’t give it so my dad told her how disrespectful she is to me and that if it’s not fixed he will have to come. They talked a bit more. The annoying part is that she made fun of my dad, thinking I was asleep. Then one of her other friends came and she silently shut her door (so I couldn’t hear) and read my father’s messages and they all laughed out loud so bad. At the point I was shaking and I either was going to storm in her room and punch her in the face or leave. I left and stayed over at my friends house, all night thinking about destroying her room and beating her up so she would just be at least ‘afraid’ of me from now on and stop being toxic.

She wouldn’t call the cops on me because she hates cops more than life itself. I asked some of my older friends and they said that there’s nothing else you can do so you must do it. I don’t want to be the little puppy anymore who is living with animal cruelty. We are humans but even in our human life there can be dominant ones and passive ones. She has to understand my place.

For all of you, I am not allowed to move out it is absolutely not an option, and my landlord didn’t help at all.

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45 Answers

DWW25921's avatar

Personally, I have no problem with that. Before you do however I would advise writing down everything your roommate has done. A list of grievances if you will. Time and date are a plus. That way in court, it will look like you were merely defending yourself. The key here is to get your roommate to hit first. This way you will get to deck her right proper and have back up documentation.

ragingloli's avatar

Well, as captain Janeway said:
“When diplomacy fails, there is only one alternative: Violence.
Force must be applied without apology. It is the Starfleet way.”

Cupcake's avatar

No, it’s not OK. If you can’t figure out any other solution, then you are not ready to live on your own.

YARNLADY's avatar

Ha, in a wolf pack, that would work well, or maybe a chicken coop pecking order.

How do you even know such a radical move wouldn’t result in even worse retaliation on her part.?

You are only in charge of yourself, so make the changes necessary. What is this about getting your father and her father involved.

You seriously need to see a counselor.

longgone's avatar

Of course not. Are you being serious?

1) It will probably not be easy. Do you expect her to just stand there and take it? You may get seriously hurt.

2) You are putting yourself in the wrong. Civilised adults don’t call each others’ parents, and they certainly don’t try to earn respect by using violence. If you’re behaving like a child, no wonder you don’t get taken seriously.

3) Legally, you are not entitled to hit anyone unless you are defending yourself or someone else against physical violence. By asking friends and us whether beating her up would be okay, you are premeditating. Even if she hits you first, you are not allowed to “beat her up”.


gorillapaws's avatar

Violence is never an acceptable solution to working out your problems.

ucme's avatar

In the words of Whitney, “It’s not right, but it’s okay.”
But then she’s dead so…

creative1's avatar

First of all violence is never a solution to a problem, there is always a way out of any problem. You don’t say why you can’t move out and move in with your father. Even if your name is on the lease I would sit down with the landlord and explain the situation calmly and rationally. Tell him or her that your roommate is breaking her end of the lease by smoking both cigarettes and weed in the apartment and if it happens again you will be calling the police the next time she is smoking weed and that you will keep calling them every time she has pot in the house. I don’t think that any landlord would want repeated visits to his building from the police for it may make other tenants want to leave. I am sure the landlord would rather see you both gone than have problems with the authorities. I would start saving your money again for another down payment for an apartment if your not able to move back in with your father.

Good luck and remember there is always other ways of handling things than violence.

zenvelo's avatar

No. You can’t beat her up, and you can’t threaten to beat her up. And, despite you being his daughter, having your father try to intervene i snot right, either. It is your sitiuation.

I don’t know why you say you can’t move. It may cost money, but it is better than living like this until August. You need to not pay your “share” for anything in her name, cancel all services that she has access to (internet, cable, landline phone). Get a padlock for your door.

And start looking for another place to live and move out. Leave her holding the bag. As said above, let the landlord know about the smoking. Call the police the next time she is smoking weed. (You can leave the premises and then call the cops.)

longgone's avatar

I just realised…you asked a question about being abused as a child recently, didn’t you? Please see a counselor.

Pachy's avatar

Well sure—violence solves everything.

rojo's avatar

I don’t understand why the landlord has not responded yet. Keep hounding him/her. Send another e-mail; complain about the burn marks in the cabinet tops and the smell of smoke permeating the place, mention that you think some of what they are smoking may not be tobacco.

And, @zenvelo had some good advice about calling the cops if you cannot get the landlord to act.

I would hold up on the violence however, It might make you feel better for a while but usually leads to much more difficult circumstances down the road, including assault charges when your roomie or one of her friends calls the cops. Regardless of her professed hatred of them, she will do it if she thinks she can hurt you more.

jca's avatar

VIolence is not acceptable. You could end up in jail. Is it worth it? If you can’t think of a diplomatic solution than you have to move out.

Coloma's avatar

Sure, as long as you are prepared to face assault charges and possible jail time.
Insane question, clearly the answer is a loud NO!
Time to use the brain nature gave you, so far it doesn’t appear you have much gray matter to work with.

Rarebear's avatar

Sure. Be prepared to be charged with assault and battery

hug_of_war's avatar

I’m as concerned by your father’s insertion in this as your want to beat her up. Sure you should talk to your dad but why is he talking to her and wanting to talk to her parents? You’re adults! This is completely absurd. He should be advising you, not fixing everything for you, that’s not how you learn to grow up.

trinitymat's avatar

I am against violence too, but the only other option here is to move out and I can’t do that because I need to sublet my apartment first and nobody is renting it since I pay an over-the-top price. I already gave ads everywhere and no response at all. The landlord responded saying he doesn’t want to intervene with roommate issues even though I called him multiple times on the issue. I will try to get a lock for my door.

Nobody here approved of this action. I find it hard to approve it myself, so I understand.

You guys saying it was wrong for my father to intervene is wrong. I did all I could myself, and the only thing she is scared of is her parents knowing she smokes weed. At this point my father living 16 hours away by plane to me, concerned because her daughter is struggling with an impossible roommate who does all kinds of things. I am shocked to see how you still can say “you are adults you can do it.” You have no idea who I am dealing with. Not all people are well in the head, and she is certainly not. So the only thing left for me was to get my father to talk to her father. So her parents can take action and be aware of her toxic behaviors. She needs help.

1TubeGuru's avatar

I have never started a physical altercation and I would never recommend throwing the first punch. on the other hand if someone takes a swing at me I have no problem with doing what I have to do and finishing a fight. you should not involve your father with your living situation if you are no longer a minor unless he is the owner of the property where you two are rooming ,it sounds like you need to get away from your roommate.

bolwerk's avatar

Can you evict her?

If she hates the police so much, use them against her. They don’t like weed and love arresting people for trivial reasons.

CWOTUS's avatar

Along with most of the other more or less rational people giving you good advice in this thread, I suggest that you eschew violence while you can. Since you’re the one considering its first use, then obviously “you can avoid violence”. In that case, do that.

There are several reasons to avoid violence. From a practical standpoint, as at least one respondent has indicated, if you start a fight how likely is it that you will be the one standing after it’s over? You don’t want to be a martyr to a silly cause like this. And it is a silly cause, no matter how serious it seems to you right now having to live through it.

Another practical matter to consider is what happens if you’re “victorious” in a physical confrontation? Your roommate will be able to appeal to all sorts of authorities (not the police, if she so chooses) including your landlord and your own father and claim, justifiably and honestly, “She started it. She attacked me first.” At that point your victory turns to sound and certain defeat.

Nor should you threaten violence (or any other action) that you’re not fully prepared, willing and capable to carry to a conclusion. What if you start a fight and she escalates it? Are you prepared to kill over this squabble if that’s what you have to do to save your life after you start a fight? Are you prepared to be killed if your roommate is an unbalanced sociopath?

So violence should be off the table. (Never hesitate to defend your own life, but never choose violence if you don’t have to, either.)

Don’t also consider yourself “locked-in” to your current living arrangement. If your apartment burned down, would you still have to live there? If you broke your leg, would it be reset in your apartment? If you choose violence and someone (anyone) sends the police, who determine that you started it, will they lock you up in your apartment? No, of course “no” to all of those rhetorical questions. Leaving the apartment is an option. If it’s not a desired option for you, perhaps you can make it a desired option for your roommate. How much money would you need to offer her to make her go away? It’s worth consideration. In the bigger picture, a $10,000 cash payout (if that’s what it takes) is cheap compared to the cost of an attorney, trial and permanent criminal record for the rest of your life.

But that wouldn’t be my first choice, either – although you do need to change your mind about your “locked-in-to-this-and-can’t-move” mindset.

My first choice would be to force a conversation upon her, even if she’s snarky, snide, resentful (over what?), sarcastic and bitter. Even if it’s a conversation that’s unpleasant to you. TALK TO HER.

When all else fails, you can send a letter to the landlord (an attorney should help with this) detailing the “unsafe and illegal acts” which he refuses to even attempt to correct, and stating that this material breach of your rental contract enables you to leave without penalty. Definitely pay for an attorney to write the letter (and review your lease). He or she will know exactly what needs to be said, and you can probably be out of there in a week or less.

jca's avatar

When you go before the Judge, which you will do if you resort to violence, saying “I had no choice” won’t hold up. The only time “you have no choice” is when you are defending yourself from physical attack/harm. Any other time, you have a choice. So you can tell Fluther until you are blue in the face, but in the end the decision is yours. Just remember you will be telling it to the Judge and possibly judged by a jury.

KNOWITALL's avatar

NO, you can’t just beat her up. .

What if you hit her wrong and her neck snaps and you go to jail for murder?

Grown-ups don’t have to resort to physical violence, you can just suck it up and ignore it. Trust me, I know it’s hard, but you do NOT want to go that route.

YARNLADY's avatar

I see some real inconsistencies in your questions.
My parents are ashamed of me, they think I am a miserable wreck. – I know I am not though. – My mother especially. She always tells me I am a piece of dirt, that I should go out and socialize. She says I am not normal, not like everyone else. She wants me to go out and hangout with friends all the time

Do you live in an apartment with an inconsiderate roommate or with your parents who hate you? Are you playing tricks on us gullible jellies?

Darth_Algar's avatar

Move out. Find another place to rent. You are absolutely not locked-in to your apartment, at all. The worst your landlord can do is sue you for unpaid rent up to the end of the lease, and with documentation of such lease-breaking acts going on by your roommate and his refusal to do anything about it, no court in the land is going to side with him.

And yes, bringing your father into this was a terrible idea. You’re an adult now. Handle the situation like an adult. “I’m gonna tell my dad on you and he’s gonna tell your dad” is unbelievably childish.

kimchi's avatar

I would move out. Nuff said.

josie's avatar

I would move out.

But having said it, a tried and true technique is to legally provoke a confrontation (such as moving their stuff out to the front porch, or something) until they get annoyed and physically touch you, THEN beat them up. I don’t condone that, but it works.

Jonesn4burgers's avatar

Beat the holy hell out of her. While you are in jail, everyone will know what a tough ass you are, and no-one will rape you, unless there is a murderer who doesn’t give a damn how tough you are. If that happens, no big deal, way better than what you have to deal with now.

flo's avatar

@trinitymat No, do not go to violence. I don’t know the solution though.

pleiades's avatar

No it’s not ok… But you knew that already

Smitha's avatar

Evict. Advise her of your intention to evict. Maybe that might work. Video them smoking in the apartment for a proof!
Violence is not always the answer, but sometimes it is. In your case No. Try to find some family or friends staying nearby who you can move in with. Moreover staying with someone who smokes weeds could put your reputation at risk which could effect your whole future. You just don’t know what sort of person she is, just in case someone called the cops on her, or for whatever reason, and they come over to the apartment, even you could get evicted.

Adagio's avatar

Beat your roommate up? Get off the grass, do you want to lower yourself to her level?

Paradox25's avatar

I don’t understand how moving out is not an option, because it appears to be your only option from what I’m gathering here. Don’t underestimate her ability to utilize law enforcement if warranted either. I don’t know how many times I had seen anti-cop/law types of people be the first ones to go to them for help when the tables had turned on them in various situations.

Punks are just that, punks, who love to run their mouths trying to look cool or tough. Your decision to otentially use violence here many not only cost you legally, but financially as well. One of you has to go, there’s no other reasonable option here.

trailsillustrated's avatar

Just so you know, I kicked someone down some stairs like 8 years ago, I got an assault charge. It ended up not being pursued, but I spent a couple nights in jail and ALOT of time in court. Only do it as a very, very last resort ( defending oneself).

longgone's avatar

@josie I’m not sure what you’re suggesting would work. I study law – German law, but it would surprise me if the US didn’t have a similar rule: Self-defence is only a valid “excuse” if you exercised reasonable force. It’s known as commensurability. If the OP got slapped in the face, she may be allowed to return the sentiment. She can’t beat the girl up, and she would always need to persuade the judge that she was practically scared for her life.

And, of course…If the court decides to call up some of the friends she mentioned, she’s screwed.

Do we have any lawyer jellies who might know for certain?

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rojo's avatar

Call the landlord over, answer the door with a cigarette in your mouth, a beer in your hand and a stereo blaring. Insult him; tell him to get off your porch; laugh when he threatens you and then slam the door in his face, Get both of you kicked out.

Or, just walk away.

Either way you lose a deposit but hey, consider it a down-payment on your sanity.

trinitymat's avatar

Guys I would like to say that I realized how wrong this idea was. I was very, very mad when I wrote this, because I had to go to my friend’s house and sleep over there since she was smoking pot and cigarettes and throwing a party till the morning even though I had just spoken to her about not doing it since I want to sleep. I was very, very angry and couldn’t believe how disrespectful she was. I knew she does it on purpose and it drove me crazy.

Now I am more relaxed and obviously don’t believe in beating her up :) I am getting a lock out my door and completely ignoring her for the reast of the semester! Thats my plan

KNOWITALL's avatar

@trinitymat Good idea. Out of sight, out of mind. Not worth your time or energy, blah. :)

rojo's avatar

@trinitymat Just be aware that she will undoubtedly look for other ways to annoy you so just be prepared. Remember: Keep Calm and Carry On. That is all.

longgone's avatar

Glad to hear that!

El_Cadejo's avatar

Why don’t you just move @trinitymat ?

trinitymat's avatar

@uberbatman I can’t. Lease is on both of us and I am not going to find anyone who would pay about the same price as I pay. It is very expensive. It is also too much to work with, and i dont trust anyone with my furniture, and when im gone god know what she would do.

Darth_Algar's avatar


Again: you roommate is engaging in activity that not only makes you uncomfortable but is in violation of the lease. The landlord is aware of this, but does nothing. No court then is going to rule against you.

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