DOs and DON’Ts For Getting Along With Your College Roommate

One of the most difficult aspects of going away to college is having to live with a roommate. After living with your family your whole life, now you have to share your space with a total stranger who will most likely have a different lifestyle and set of customs, some of which might clash with your own.

There’s also a strong possibility that you’ll have to alter, or completely drop, some lifelong habits in order to get along with your roommate. I mean, your parents might have found it endearing that you like to blast Bon Jovi’s greatest hits every morning, but not everyone is going to want to deal with that.

The majority of roommate issues are the type that can be avoided altogether if you think things through and remember these Dos and Don’ts .

  • DON’T room with a friend

It might seem like living with your best friend might be the best idea in the world, but more often than not, these kinds of arrangements turn disastrous. Spending all your time with one person can eventually get tiresome and put you on edge.

Suddenly, you find yourself hating all the things you used to like about them and wishing you could have just one second of peace. Since you already spend most of your time with your friends, give yourself a break and live with someone different!

  • DON’T write off your roommate

It’s common for you to want to spend time with people who share your interests, but it’s important that you allow yourself to meet different people; not just because you might learn something from them, but because they’ll introduce you to things you didn’t even know existed.

If you walk into your room on the first day and realize your roommate is obsessed with comic books and horror films, don’t write him off on the spot for being “weird;” ask him about his interests and try to understand them, and he’ll do the same with yours. You might discover that you have more in common than you first thought, and if you don’t, it’ll open up a world of new experiences.

  • DO be honest

If your roommate does something that bothers you deeply, tell them. I don’t mean something that’s just mildly annoying, like the way she maniacally laughs at cat videos on YouTube, but something that truly disrupts your life. For example, if she’s always bringing strangers into your room, or if she plays loud music late at night when everyone else is sleeping. These are things many people might not think are bothersome or they may not even realize they’re doing, so, being silently mad isn’t going to work.

You should be an adult about it and let your roommate know exactly what they’re doing, why it bothers you, and what you would like to do to solve the problem.

  • DO compromise

Your parents have been telling you for years now that life isn’t always fair so, I don’t think I have to remind you. You can’t always expect things to go your way, sometimes you have to give a little.

If your roommate wants to listen to music, and you’ve been studying all day long, it might be time to either take a study break, or leave the room so he can do what he wants. Or, if you like to wake up early on Sundays and watch the news, but your roommate wants to sleep in, you might have to find a different place to do it. Remember, you’re not the only person living in that room, and you can’t expect everyone to always want to do what you want to do.

Although there are some serious roommate issues that can’t be solved with a simple list, things such as stealing or drugs and alcohol problems, the majority of conflicts are nothing more than misunderstandings and simple mistakes.

These kinds of fights can be stopped and forgotten as long as both parties are willing to work through it and compromise. You might have to give up something you like once in a while, but that’s what living with someone is all about, and it’s all part of growing up.

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Mercedes Espinoza

Mercedes Espinoza

Mercedes Espinoza is a senior at Florida Atlantic University pursuing a degree in Multimedia Journalism. Although reading is her first love, writing is a close second and she can usually be found with her nose in a book or hunched over a laptop typing away. Outside of school and work, she’s interested in all things fitness as well as continuing to grow an already massive nail polish collection.