Why I Decided to Switch Dorm Rooms My Freshman Year

If you are struggling in your living situation, you're not alone.

I struggled. Like most other students arriving at college my first quarter, I thought the amount of stress I felt was solely a result of having to make friends, and academic stress — factors most college freshmen deal with. 

By the time I survived half way through winter quarter, I realized something needed to change. Despite having a group of friends and feeling like I could tackle my classes, I felt intense amounts of stress and severe lack of motivation. I began to question other facets of my life that may be contributing to how I felt.

My roommate and I lived on different schedules. Coming home every night, I felt intense amounts of stress as though I could not belong in the place I was supposed to live. Somehow, I was walking on eggshells in my own space. This was not okay.

I began to contemplate the possibility of moving. The thought scared me — would my roommate be upset? Would it end up better, or worse? Did my stress constitute a reason to move, or was it all in my head? I thought about moving for about three months before I actually took the plunge. What made me do it?

I realized I had to put myself first. No amount of advice from my parents or friends could reason me to one side or another. This was a decision I had to come to on my own. Ultimately, in situations such as mine, you have to choose yourself before someone else.

I could not be concerned with how my original roommate was supposedly going to react. I had to focus my energy on my studies and my mental and physical health. 

So, with a jolt of courage, I decided that the possibility of living in a more inviting, comfortable environment was worth my health. If you are in a situation where you feel intensely uncomfortable in the space you live, I encourage you to assess how your living space is affecting your mental health. Sometimes, you have to take a leap of faith.