Take It Up With Man-agement

, , , , , | Friendly | August 31, 2018

(My wife and I have been living in a tiny studio apartment for three years and have finally decided to upgrade, so we are applying for various low-cost one-bedroom apartments within our budget. There is a low-income housing complex nearby that looks promising, so we fill in an application and my wife drops it off after work. She gets a call a few days later and we are invited to see the place. My first name is Alex, and we are both women. Upon our arrival, the landlady gives us an odd look as we introduce ourselves.)

Wife: “Hi! Thanks for inviting us to see the place. I’m [Wife’s Full Name] and this is Alex.”

Landlady: *confused look* “Where is your husband? Is this your friend?”

Me: “I’m her wife. My name’s on the form we filled in.”

Landlady: “Alex is a man’s name. I was expecting a man.”

Me: *laughing, assuming she’s making a joke* “Oh, yeah, I guess it could be confusing, but I’m–”

Landlady: *suddenly icy* “Why did you lie on the form?”

(We didn’t lie or leave out any information, and the form never asked us for our genders. We are both caught off-guard by her sudden change in tone, but before we can say anything more, she snaps at us again.)

Landlady: “I’m sorry; you’ll have to leave.”

Wife: “But we haven’t looked at the apartment yet.”

Landlady: “I’m afraid the apartment is gone. I offered it to a couple who just left before you arrived.”

(She was exuding hostility and while my wife looked ready to argue, I was starting to get anxious and upset, so we left without making a fuss. Since we were never formally offered the apartment and couldn’t prove that we were discriminated against, we didn’t take any action against her, but thankfully we find a much better apartment a couple of months later. On a whim, around that time, I looked up the apartment we had visited before, and lo and behold, it was still listed as available!)

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