I was awaken by a clamor in the middle of the night– someone wasrummaging through my closet. I had a moment of panic, then realized this personwas my roommate Gayathri. This was my first quarter at UCSD as a transferstudent, living in an apartment with five other women, busy as an InternationalBusiness student could be, with heavy coursework and extracurricular.
I was mostlyon campus, and came home to sleep.I was fond of Gayathri, she was easy going and down to earth, or so itseemed. Later did I come to find out she was a kleptomaniac.
One afternoon, I was looking for my blazer but I could not seem tofind it anywhere. Soon, a jacket went missing, then a blouse. Then my moneydisappeared. I did not think too much of it since I just moved into a new place.I figured I had misplaced my clothes and cash, and that they would turn uplater.
I saw Gayathri wearing one of my dresses which I could not find in mycloset anywhere. I decided to take a look in her closet, I found all my missingclothes along with some of my books, and jewelry. I was shocked, she had takenadvantage of the fact that I was barely in my room.I knew she had financial burdens, so I tried my best to come up withpossibilities as to why she would have stolen from me. I asked my parents,sister, and best friends for advice. I chose to talk to these individualsspecifically because I trusted their advice.They told me to confront her, but to onlymake claims I could back up. As mentioned in the reading I rehearsed what I wasgoing to say to her.
I did as I was advised and Gayathri immediately begandenying she took anything. I showed her the picture I had taken and had my housematesas witnesses. She eventually, caved and admitted she did steal and claimed shehad a mental problem and enjoyed stealing. None of us felt safe with her livingwith us and had her removed from the lease, and notified campus police andcounselors.Dealing with this situation taught me that next time I should do abackground check on potential roommates and set guidelines and boundaries. Inthis situation I wish I had known about her problem so I could find solutionsto better resolve the issue and also understand that it may not be somethingshe can control on her own.
The best course of action is to always staycognizant and if you notice something is wrong, try to address the problemimmediately.