Kristen Bryant-Thinking In A Lala College Sweatshirt

4 Tips for Safely Quarantining with Roommates

Living with roommates, no matter how much you may love them, is undeniably hard—uncleaned messes, partners staying past their welcome, late-night bright-light study sessions. COVID-19 has only further complicated these relationships. If you live off-campus or are lucky enough to still have your on-campus housing, you might be faced with new challenges, as not everyone is taking this as seriously as they should be. 

Here are four tips for safely quarantining with your roommates.

  1. 1. Have an honest conversation

    Even if your roommate isn’t making you feel unsafe, going to see their partner every other day or working an essential job because they have to, you still need to start a dialogue about how this indefinite quarantine is going to look. If you’re nervous about it, make it about you. “I am worried because…” If you make it about them, they will be less likely to listen and respond well.  It doesn’t have to be a big deal, set boundaries, decide what makes you feel safe, and hold each other accountable. Don’t forget to be firm because you shouldn’t have to compromise when it comes to your safety and well-being. 

  2. 2. Designate One Grocery Shopper

    The fewer people leaving the house right now the better, so figure out a gameplan for grocery shopping and other essential outings. It doesn’t have to be, though ideally, it should be the same person. Decide on a regular time to go grocery shopping and get as much food as possible at once. If you’re the roommate staying home, consider giving your roommate a couple of bucks for gas, or offer to unpack the groceries.  

  3. 3. Make Masks Together

    The Center for Disease Control and Prevention is now recommending that everyone wear masks when they go out in public. They were reluctant to do so because these medical supplies among many others are in high demand and low supply. The CDC offer on their website, easy tutorials for making your own masks—you don’t even have to know how to sew! Grab a bottle (or let’s be real a box) of wine and make a craft date out of it. Crafting, like all creative hobbies, will, even if momentarily help you destress.

  4. 4. Check-in Regularly

    Chances are your roommate is feeling most of the feelings you are right now. Ask them how they are doing, and try not to take it personally if they are unresponsive and distant. We all cope in different ways.

Whatever your situation is, trust yourself! As long as you are honest and assertive, things will be okay.