RE: Washington Post Article
From: Rob Sandelin (
Date: Tue, 9 Jun 1998 09:28:21 -0500
This article is a classic example of what the naive world sees about 
cohousing. We, the "experts" at it, respond miffed that its not representing 
how the experts believe it is, and didn't tell all the good stuff.

Sorry folks, but reality is how you perceive it. And many many people see 
cohousing in the light that was presented in the article. Cohousing is 
different and that makes it suspect. 

In some peoples cases, cohousing is a counter cultural  rejection of societies 
mainstream values. There are lots of people who think vegetarians are really 
weird and counter cultural freaks. Vegetarians! . It goes on and on, people 
tend to distrust, even hate things that are different. I have heard amazing 
hate stories from development hearings about cohousing. The vehemence of the 
language used is shocking.  This one had a bemused tone which could be read as 
a positive light. Oh, those wacky relatives of mine..... 

Someday, somebody on the inside of cohousing is going to write a very negative 
article about cohousing that will be published, and it will make this naive 
one look pretty good. So just be glad she didn't focus on benign neglect of 
children, 6 hour meetings that decide nothing, huge financial risks by amateur 
developers, profiles of groups that have failed and lost all their 
investments. There is a  dark side that we carefully screen the press 
from,(and each other from) which someday will be exposed. So laugh at the 
naivete of the writer and be thankful that all she saw was her Uncle Martins 
distaste for consumerist culture exemplified in their housing choice. We will 
get much worse articles someday, written by someone embittered by losing two 
years of time and thousands of dollars in a failed cohousing project.  That 
one will hurt a lot worse.

Rob Sandelin

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