7 Common Struggles of Living with a Roommate

The struggle is real.


1. Respect.

Before anything else, you need to have respect for your fellow roommate or roommates. Living with other people and handling issues that arise is so much easier when mutual respect is given. Having that understanding that they are in the same boat as you and that they too must learn to live with this new person helps navigating the situation so much easier. You need to accept that it is their space too and maybe the ugly rug that your grandma bought at a flea market doesn’t really need to be in the living room for all to see.


2. Noise

After coming home from long day of classes or work, you just want some peace and quiet. Instead, your roommate decides to watch a horror movie at 1 am when you need to be up at 6 am. Maybe they have their music blaring or have to yell into their phone to their boyfriend/ girlfriend about who should hang up first. All you want is a nice peaceful night to relax but they just won't let it happen. Throwing a pillow over your head and screaming into it can only help so much.


3. Friends

Going along with noise, maybe they have some less desirable friends that come around. Whether they are loud as well or just generally bring those negative vibes into your living space, it isn't fly with you. All you want is for them to ask if it is ok. You just want that mutual R-E-S-P-E-C-T Aretha Franklin sang about.


4. Trash

 Don't even get me started on trash. We all know how this one goes. You have the nice new bag and clean recycle bin. Then a week goes by and starts to add up. It keeps getting more and more full until you are just piling trash on trash on trash. You are proud of your stacking abilities though. Everytime you and your roommate make eye contact you know you both are wondering who will cave first and take it out. Maybe you did it last time, and the time before that. When is it their turn? They know you are weak and will cave, but not this time! You just can't! That's when the smell hits you. You walk in and it's like something died. But you will not give in. And so the trash battle continues. (Eventually someone gives in and one of the bags begins to leak so now you must decide who will clean the floor. Let Trash Battle 2 begin!


5. Dishes

Just like the trash battle exist, so does the dish battle. No matter how many times you say it takes two minutes to clean your dishes, no one does. They pile up in the sink. You have no knives to use or any pans to cook with because they are all dirty. You refuse to clean someone else's dishes because they need to learn, but they never do. Sometimes you let out a defeated sigh and clean them because you really want your Mac & Cheese that you have to make on a dirty stove because they refuse to wipe that off too! Next time, you tell yourself, next time I will not cave. 


6. Fridge space

 All you want is to buy as much cheese and cookie dough as you can but you share a fridge with three other people and nothing fits. It is like a game of Tetris, or Jenga. You open the freezer and everything falls out. You lose and therefore have to restack it all. Remember all the stuff you forgot you had because it is buried under someone else's restaurant leftovers they never end up eating? By the time you rediscover it, it has gone bad. Oh and the smell! There is something in there you cannot find that just smells terrible. You throw away anything it could possibly be but the smell will not leave. Why oh why is this even a problem? Your anger grows and grows until you discover behind the milk carton that is in front of the juice, which is in front of the butter that is sitting on top of the chicken you were defrosting weeks ago and forgot about. Now you just feel guilty.


7. Bathroom habits

 If you are lucky enough, maybe your schedules line up perfectly so that no one must fight the other one for the bathroom. You just want your wings on point and don't have time to put up with your roommates clipped toenails sitting on the counter or their inability to clean up the hair left behind after a beard trimming or someone shaving in the shower. Nobody got time for that. Keep it clean and wipe off the mirror once in a while.


There are always ways to fix these problems. Roommate contracts, chore charts, designated “quiet hours”. It just all boils down to respect. Respect for one another and respect for the living space. It can be hard at times, but when you find that nice balance it will be worth it. Who knows? Maybe the world’s worst roommate will be your best friend someday!


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