Ask Uncle Sam #1: House Drama

Cherwell's very own agony uncle is here to cast an avuncular eye over your woes

Dear Uncle Sam,

Our housemate has upped and left us for his girlfriend. We’ve bought a pot plant to replace him, but it just isn’t the same. Other than posting passive-aggressive comments on Cherwell agony uncle pages, is there anything that I can do?



Hi Josh,

I’m sorry to hear about your predicament. It must be hard for you to drift apart from your friend as he seeks fulfillment and happiness with another human being. But don’t fret! I’ve got some advice to help you through this turbulent time.

With regard to the passive-aggression, there is a lot more you can do—submitting your problem to Uncle Sam simply isn’t enough to voice your discontent. You need to think bigger. Change his name to the aubergine emoji in all your group chats to symbolise what a terrible friend he’s being. Tag them both in memes which imply they’re too close to one another. Publicly advertise for a new housemate who is the polar opposite of this disgusting, filthy traitor. My point is, there is far more that you can do—provided you wish to be passive-aggressive for the sake of it. If you don’t, then none of this is a very good idea.

If your endgame is, instead, winning your housemate back from this voluptuous seductress, you’re going to have to woo him. You need to demonstrate that you’re a superior alpha to his leading lady, and therefore worthier of his attention. There are multiple ways in which to accomplish this: you should speak over her at every conceivable opportunity, challenge her to open combat in the gladiatorial arena, and even build a bigger nest than hers out of nearby twigs and branches, demonstrating that you’re a more attractive mate. Following through with any of these will prove your hypermasculinity once and for all—before long, your roomie will come crawling back, begging for a second chance after realising his paramour’s inferiority.

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This will obviously fail if you’re terrified of her. Her dominance may know no reckoning, and you may never get him back if she’s too scary. If this is the case, it’s going to be hard—but you’re going to have to move on.

It sounds to me like you’re not quite serious enough about this pot plant. Ensure that you give it adequate sunlight and water it often enough. Are you addressing it by your friend’s name? Have you dressed it up in his clothes? Do you grant it a vote in important flat matters? Until you’re performing these steps, it’s going to be impossible to make any progress with your lives—a housemate-shaped void can be filled only with a useless, inanimate, housemate-shaped pot plant. You must commit to this and convince yourself that this is your housemate now. Don’t even acknowledge the Judas living in your midst anymore. Keep acting as though this foliage is really your chum, until everyone else believes this too. Even your treacherous ‘friend’ will accept that he is a pot plant soon enough. Do not relent.

Do you have a problem for Uncle Sam? Submit it via the form here!