Roommates; blessings or nightmares? If you’re going to live in a dorm at college then it’s most likely that you are going to have a roommate and if you are way out of luck; maybe even two (I truly am sorry for you). Sometimes having a roommate is the best part about living in a dorm; you won’t have to go to dining halls alone, 3am breakdowns won’t feel so lonely and you might just get a life long friend. Other times, they can truly be a nightmare. Unfortunately, during my freshmen year I barely got along with my roommate; we had different sleep patterns, room decor ideas, study time and different friends. So, if you are dealing with similar kinds of roommate nightmares then here are some tips to save your sanity.
- SET BOUNDARIES. This should be the first thing you should do after moving in. Be clear about all the things you want and learn about all the things your roommate wants. If you clear all this at the beginning you two will at least be out of each others hair.
- TALK TO HER/HIM. Yes, she dropped food on the floor after you vacuumed it 30 seconds ago and yes she does not know about the existence of headphones when you’re trying to study. But, instead of getting angry and fueling all the hate keep calm. It’s time to let him/her know what they’re doing and to value the shared space.
- GET YOUR RA TO WORK. You know those people who every now and then knock on your door to give free candy or condoms and invites you to events promising free food? They’re not just weird strangers walking down your hallways, they’re the Residential Assistants. If talking it out with your roommate did not work; its time to take it to the RA’s. They might help you both two come to a common resolution or even help you switch to a new room.
- FOOD. Yes, food fixes everything so if you and you’re roommates are not on talking terms its time to change that because willingly or unwillingly you are stuck with them for the entire academic year. So, instead of fueling all the tension; try having a decent conversation over food. Ask him/her if they want to go eat at the dining or share your snacks. You never know, you might just find a friend in a foe.
- DON’T BITE BACK. If he/she ate your snacks without permission or talks too loud on the phone while you’re studying; be the bigger person and don’t make the same mistakes. Yes pay back seems like the best idea but this will only influence him/her to continue making these mistakes. Instead, just point out their mistake through humor; it might just strike them.