While ending my first semester of college, I have been reflecting on what made these past 4 months so incredible. The main reason was my roommates. I started school in the second semester, so my rooming experience was unique. I didn't choose my roommates, I was placed to live at my third choice for a dorm, and I had no idea what I was getting into. And let me tell you, I am endlessly grateful for this random placement because I have found my best friends, my future bridesmaids, and life long travel buddies. It took a moment to fully adjust, but I am the type of person that loves to connect with people, hear their story, and openly share past and present struggles and triumphs, so I was determined to get to know these girls.
I'm writing this article in hopes that students next year may have some knowledge of how to bond with their roommates prior to entering into their new living situation.
We watched movies in our living space
My roommates and I started doing this right off the bat. We would find ourselves bringing up movies in our conversations all the time, and realize that not all of us had seen them! So we'd grab our pillows, line them up along the side of one of our beds, and snuggle up for a movie night. We did this almost every night, and there is nothing like a good rom-com or a sleazy comedy to bring a group of girls together.
We walked to meals together
We all have to eat, so why eat alone? Out of all of my experiences this first semester, eating alone in the dining hall was one of the hardest. I felt isolated being one of the only new students, so I avoided eating alone at all costs. I would let my stomach grumble from hunger until I heard one of my roommates say she was going to eat, and then I would spring from my bed and ask to join. This is how I got to know each of them on an individual level. Walking together gave us the opportunity to nonchalantly chat and grow more comfortable with one another.
We went to parties together
Parties are one of the best ways to meet people, but there is also always the element of vulnerability going to one alone. I learned that if you have your roommates tagging along, it not only presented the perfect environment to chat with each other, but having your roommates with you can come in handy because they are like your built-in wing men and bodyguards. If some guy/girl is getting a little too close, or your roommate can't find the confidence to talk to someone, you might be the answer to their prayers!
We did our homework together
We all know that homework is hard and boring, especially when you are feeling unmotivated. I for one, hate doing homework alone because I get so distracted and frustrated with myself. Doing homework with my roommates was the answer to getting homework done without so many painful bumps in the process. When we do homework together, we help each other with similar classes, lighten the mood when one of us keeps getting a problem wrong, and keep each other company when we just need a little break to sit, talk, and take a breather.
We explored our universities surrounding city
When you live in a new place, there is a lot to be discovered. I had never really explored my university's city, so I didn't feel comfortable going alone. I went out on a limb one day, and I asked my roommates if they knew of any cool places downtown, they were so quick to offer me a tour of the city! I found that getting your roomies together for some after-class exploration of the local coffee shops, boutiques, and bookstores give you guys the quality time you need to forge a friendship. It gives you an opportunity to see what they might like in coffee, or in books, or little trinkets. This might also give you an idea for a gift to buy them on a special occasion!
At the end of the day, despite the differences in our views, backgrounds, and personality types, we are all human. Humans are social creators that thrive in their environment when they have supportive friends and acquaintances. So even if you think there is absolutely no way to become besties with your roommate, there is no reason you can't help each other out when the stress of school weighs down on you both. So with these simple bonding ideas, I hope you can potentially grow closer to the person you share your space with.