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I Live in a Household of 9 Members- Here’s How It Really Feels

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

In my small family of four, we were very intimate, private and close with one another. Today, I currently live with nine other family members, including myself. Often, when I tell people this, their first impression is an instant jaw drop. I don’t blame them – you don’t often hear a large family of nine living together under the same roof.

To break it down, my household consists of the following members: my parents, brother, grandparents and three cousins. Last year, my cousins immigrated to Canada and have since lived with me and my family. When I was younger, I always wished to have more people around the house. My parents were always busy working so I never had the chance to go out, other than to school on weekdays. While most people may think that it may be super chaotic (which I certainly agree, it is), there are also times where the positives outweigh the negatives. 

PROS:

  1. The Company 

There have been many times when I had the most random and spontaneous trips to the grocery store at 9 PM to buy snacks. I can always rely on my brother or one of my cousins to tag along with me to keep me company. When we want to play a game, we always have enough participants. Our game nights are tons of fun and can last hours. When you live with a large family, especially cousins around your age, someone will always be down to hang out with you. Even when we aren’t doing anything together, we’ll just sit in the same room, each doing our own thing and just enjoying each other’s presence. 

  1. Support System

Without a doubt, we all face our personal challenges and battles. Whenever I am feeling down, I can always count on someone in my family to talk to. Whether it be my mom, brother or one of my cousins – I always have someone to lean on for help. I am extremely thankful to have such a supportive family who never fails to encourage me and all the decisions I make.

  1. You Laugh A Lot 

There’s always some form of laughter that you hear around the house. Sometimes, we just laugh at the craziness within our household. From calling names, nitpicking at how we do certain things or bringing up funny stories, these internal jokes make sense only to us sometimes. When we have arguments, they become debates with supporters on each side, but we never get over the top, instead, we laugh it off.

CONS:

  1. Little Privacy

My door is practically always closed unless I’m not in the room. It can be extremely irritating and frustrating to hear loud noises coming from outside when I’m so focused on working. The worst part of it all is when someone casually walks into your room when you are in the middle of a call. Everyone knows everything about everyone else and this sometimes leads to interference in daily matters, especially when you tell one person not to tell another. You are always going to be surrounded by people and they will try to help, but sometimes it can get too much when you feel like you want your own personal space.

  1. Conflicting Schedules

This was one of my biggest issues at the beginning. I’d like to say that I used to sleep relatively early. Having dead silence at night is extremely important to me as I am a light sleeper. But when there are conflicting schedules, such as some of us sleeping later than others, it becomes a problem. Tensions can sometimes arise, so I always have to let everyone know ahead of time when I need to sleep early.

  1. Less Space Around the House 

Prior to my cousins coming to Canada to live with us, we always had extra space and room around the house. We had just enough seating space around the dinner table, an extra room for guests to stay over in and a lot more room for shoes. Now with all nine of us together, the house can feel really cramped. Depending on what kind of dinner we have, sometimes the table would need to be extended. Extra chairs need to be pulled out from our rooms to make space for everyone to sit around the TV.  

Of course, there are things like more dishes to wash, having to space out the timing of when we shower to avoid hogging up the hot water and fighting about who gets the last chicken wing. Despite the many cons of living in a big family and the many quarrels we have with one another, I wouldn’t trade it for anything else. 

Erica Su

Ryerson '24

Erica is a Creative Industries student at Ryerson University specializing in business and communications. During her free time, she loves to cook up a storm in the kitchen, play 8 ball pool, and re-watch her all-time favourite shows such as Selling Sunset.
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