It may seem strange to some, but communal living is a normal arrangement in 21st century America. Nationally, nearly one in three adults lives with a roommate or parent, according to a 2018 Pew study. As opposed to the American dream of home ownership, about a quarter of people over 40 seek an apartment—and roommates—after being divorced or widowed. Though I was the only one in my house over 40, I was not the only divorcée; two of my roommates were divorced as well. The primary motivation of my renters was the cost of housing; even in Detroit, it’s expensive. I own my home, but I too needed the help to be able to afford to chase a career in photography.