What You Need to Know About Having a Roommate

Hello beautiful people!

Guess what? It’s time to talk about roommates! You might be wondering how the whole “roommate business” works now that you’re heading to college…because no one wants a bad start with the person they’ll live with for a year, right? Well, there are many types of situations you may encounter, and it’s true that you may face some problems along the way–I’m not going to lie to you, guys! But yeah, in all honesty, here are some of the scenarios you might have to deal with, but also…some advice on how to avoid them or help your roommate as well:

“Their stuff is all over the place!” Dorms are set up equally, so each of you is supposed to get the same amount of space. There could be a day you walk in the room and find things that aren’t yours on your chair, or that last night’s laundry still on the floor. Oh no! You’re living with a messy roommate…but unfortunately not the messy “I-keep-my-mess-on-my-side-of-the-room” kind.

“It’s 1am and his/her friends are still here!” College life is exciting, new friends, new stories, new memories…but your roommate might sometimes think they have the room for themselves and turn it into a hang out spot…no silence in the room, great (remember, this disrupt the neighbors as well!).

“Wait, do I even have a roommate?” Someone will get that roommate who will spend most of the time on campus and disappear on the weekends. No, it’s not your imagination, you do have a roommate somewhere.

“They don’t care about anything I say!” You tried to talk to this person, put every request on the table, in good terms and many, many times…but no matter what you do, they don’t listen.

“Where are my snacks?” One day you come back from class and you feel like having a snack, so you grab your “new” Oreo pack, only to find that it’s been opened before–and it wasn’t you. Curious, you carefully open the lid and find no cookies in it! That’s when you realize your roommate may conceivably-possibly-most likely be eating your food.

“Does my roommate sleep?” There are people who get their activities done at night, who don’t really feel the need to sleep “that early’ or at all…or are just distracted by whatever game they’re playing. Problem here is, they might have that really annoying light bulb on all night, or are noisy with no consideration…that’s not good!

“Don’t forget that!” Forgetful roommate. Tends to leave his/her keys in the room, which might result on him/her getting locked out of the room and changing the lock…great, you need to get new keys. You will find yourself reminding your roommate about a lot of things.

“Drama, drama everywhere…” No one likes drama, but it either follows us or we cause it. Your roommate might have some things going on in his/her life and might need someone to listen to all this…and you might be the chosen one. I personally don’t have a problem with this, but I know people that might find it a little annoying.

“Why didn’t you ask?” And it might be said in more than one situation. Your roommate might not tell you he/she is out of food, needs a ride somewhere…or pretty much needs help on something. It’s not you, it’s the situation you’re both in; this person might be a little shy about stating what he/she is thinking or needs.

“Where are my things?” Just as the roommate who eats your cookies, there is also the one who takes your things and clothes without permission. At this point in life you might think this doesn’t happen–but it does! No respect for privacy whatsoever.

“Music. Too. Loud. No!” You may encounter the kind of person who likes to do everything and absolutely everything with music…loud music. If you like silence, this is going to be a challenge for you.

What do I do to avoid some of these scenarios or help my roommate?

Talk about the game plan. The most important thing to do. Stating what you plan to do in the room, your classes, what bugs you and what you’re okay with, visits, cleaning, sharing…all of those, even if you don’t state rules right away–you should mention those. Basically, from day one you should make sure to be on the same page with your roommate. Just talking through this living together process gives you a 80% chance of not dealing with some of the problems I mentioned above.

Rules. Do I need to explain this one? Haha!

Get those listening skills a chance to shine! Develop this wonderful attribute as you try to listen your roommate and his/her everyday struggles…they are talking to you for a reason–offer them some advice as well. You could also kindly refer them to the counseling program on campus…they’re even more experienced.

Label things. You might think you have it all figured out and that you know where everything is…but truth is, things are either going to get lost or be taken away from you at some point. If you don’t label or state that Oreo pack your roommate ate was yours, he/she can easily call it a mistake…and get away with it! Don’t leave things unattended, trust no one…haha, just kidding–but really.

Talk to your CA. If things are getting a little out of hand, stop them from progressing and ask your CA for help. Believe me, they’re trained and have seen countless scenarios like yours and will know what’s best to do.

Bonding time with your roommate! Organize a movie night with your favorite movies…or find something in common you two like to do and make it happen! Your roommate will start to include you to his/her activities and become better friends. This person will see you every day, might as well develop a a wonderful friendship!

Set up a routine message. For the forgetful roommates, either if you leave first or leave later…you can blurt out a “don’t forget your keys” or “are you forgetting anything?”…it will do wonders and your roommate will thank you. Also, you can suggest getting a dry-erase board to write tasks on! It can benefit you as well.

Ongoing communication. I can’t stress this enough, communication is important at all times. Make sure to express what’s going right or wrong in this process of living together. Don’t be afraid, because they might have some things to say to you as well.

Lastly, don’t worry, not all possible roommates are bad, and I strongly believe that if you constantly communicate, you will be able to live in harmony and avoid many problems. A good roommate relationship depends on the teamwork of its members, so make sure that both of you want the same outcome–and I repeat–to live in harmony.

Good luck with your roommates!

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