Prepare yourself for an incredibly salty article.
Being a third year at Kennesaw State, I've had a total of four roommates in college. I also had four total roommates when I recently worked states away this past summer, so actually eight total roommates altogether. I am sad to say that all of them were equally terrible in their own unique way. However, I've learned to take some good out of my experience with them all and learn what not to do as a roommate that I felt should be shared. Apparently, some of these things aren't common knowledge. Allow me to enlighten you.
1. Don't treat your shared things like trash.
During my first year, my roommate and I shared a mini fridge. She wouldn't close her milk all the way and would leave it on its side. By Christmas break, there was a thick layer of hard, dried milk at the bottom. Along with that, she actually left a Tupperware of food in the fridge since move in. I could have sworn I saw it move. It eventually made the entire fridge stink. How hard is it to clean up your own messes? Spoiler alert: my mother and I were the ones that had to clean it all.
2. Have respect for yourself.
I say this because of two of my previous roommates. I had the unfortunate luck of seeing my one roommate multiple times naked in the bathroom with her boyfriend about to take a shower. (Life hack: the best way to deal with this situation is to splat cold yogurt on their back via a plastic spook.) The second roommate thought it was fine to leave her incredibly expensive bras in places they didn't need to be. For example, in the kitchen where we all ate or on the floor next to another roommates bed or in chairs we sat in. If you can muster any sort of human decency, you'll make the people you live with a lot more comfortable. I promise.
3. Respect your roommate(s).
This should be an obvious one, right? For my previous roommates and current ones, this apparently is not. One roommate actually left a used condom on my razor on my side of the shower. Another roommate was selfish and arrogant, then made her three roommates uncomfortable when we tried to calmly talk to her about it and lashed out. The last roommates actually turned the air off when it was almost eighty degrees outside and left halfway clean dishes on the drying towel I bought for over four weeks. And also made fun of me when they thought I was crying? You don't have to be best friends with the people you live with, but at least try to respect them. It'll make living with them more bearable, especially if you can't stand them.
4. Communicate face to face.
A lot can get lost over texting, calling, or even video chatting. The best way to handle a situation is to tackle it head on and as a team. You roommates could be that beast from Stranger Things, but being able to communicate with them in an effective way will help your life and their life run much smoother. Chances are, your roommate won't bite. If you have an issue, just try talking to them about it. Talking about it does not mean assuming, berating, or yelling. These can just cause more issues on top of the existing one. This also seems like an obvious one, right? You'd be surprised.
5. Follow the rules.
Rules are set up for safety and comfort. For Kennesaw, on-campus living situations require a roommate agreement with your RA. If you and your roommate(s) agree on a certain thing, follow it. You helped create that rule. Don't break your own rule. That will just serve to infuriate whoever you live with and make yourself look dumb. You're in college. You aren't dumb. Don't make yourself look like it.