5 Way to Get Along with Your Roommate (Freshman Year + Beyond)

1. Give them space!

  • Don’t be overwhelming. Just because you’re both in the room doesn’t mean you always HAVE to be talking! During the first week of my freshman year, this was a hard concept for me to swallow. Whenever my roommate and I lapsed into silence, all I could think was, “Why isn’t she talking?” “Does she not like me?” That’s almost never the case.  Trust me, sometimes silence isn’t a bad thing!

2. Establish boundaries

  • What are you both looking to get out of living together? Do you want to be besties? Do you just want someone to come home to? Establish what you’re looking for early on to avoid wasting any time or having any awkward miscommunications, as with any relationship. Plan out what you will do if you two have a disagreement, when you’ll each be going to bed, and go over protocol for having guests over.

3. Be considerate!

  • College could be the first time either of you is living with another person in such close quarters. So, for the sake of surviving, try really hard not to leave dirty clothes, socks, or underwear, or food laying around. Try to use headphones when listening to music or watching Netflix, and be mindful of each other’s sleeping patterns! Try to be supportive of your roommate whenever possible, and try to remain open. Speaking from experience, home sickness is a serious illness; and sometimes a little roommate understanding can make all the difference in the world.

4. Get to know each other

  • If both of you are looking to be good friends, try hanging out together in and out of your dorm! Attend social events, and bond over common interests such as food or Netflix. However, be cautious that you are not isolating yourself. It’s important to have friends other than your roommate to avoid tension.

5. Enjoy!

  • Whether you become best friends with your roommate or you end up running in two different circles, never stop being kind. You never know what someone else is going through, and you would expect the same treatment if roles were reversed. Remember that both you and your roommate pay (usually a LOT of money) to cohabit your dorm. Both you of have the right to enjoy it! 

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