By Abby Owen
Living with roommates can be a nightmare at times. Trust me – I have six. For some folks reading this, it’s your first time away from home. Congrats! You’ve made it this far in continuing your education. You might not have realized how much your parents do to take care of you, but now it’s all on you. On top of that, you have to live with another person, potentially strangers. Who will take the garbage out? What’s communal? Should I leave my lights on until 11 p.m.?
The best advice I can give to you after living with that many girls is to communicate! If you haven’t already, you should sit down with your roommates and write down house rules/guidelines that you both want to live by. So, if one of you forgets something or breaks a rule you can reflect back on the list. Over-communicating is better than not communicating at all. If your roommates annoy you – which will happen, eventually, just wait – give yourself some time to cool down.
If you’re both home, try going on a walk, hitting the gym or just getting out of the house. You need to give yourself time to think, because you don’t want to say something you’ll end up regretting. I’m a bit of a hothead, so I try to give myself at least a few hours before talking to my roommates again, that way we can try to resolve the issue calmly. You don’t have to be best friends with your roommate. If you are, great! Two of my closest friends now are my roommates. But you do have to co-exist in peace. You don’t want to dread going home cause you know your roommate is going to be home.
I used to lie to my roommate, freshman year, about when I’d be going to dinner because I didn’t like her, then she saw me at the dining hall with my other friends. I definitely dreaded going back home that night. So, take my advice. Remember, talk to your roommates in person about issues – texting about them can cause more problems, been there, done that – and you should have a good year.