One of the things most people look forward to when starting college is having a roommate. Living with someone new can be exciting, but also scary. For most people finding a roommate is very similar to dating, writing an awkward post about yourself and choosing the best pictures you can find of yourself. Then comes the talking phase, you send multiple, "Hey! I saw your post and thought we would get along really well, you're also so pretty...". This can be a super exciting time when heading off to college and the first part of making the process feel real. But what happens when you're roommate turns into a nightmare...? Many people have negative interactions with their first roommate, but what is the best way to deal with them? Most people aren't used to living someone that isn't in their family or how to talk to them when something bad happens. Heres a list of the best way to deal with a shitty roommate.
1. Start out being honest.
Let your roommate know what is and isn't okay if you don't tell them how you feel from the beginning it's harder to make rules later. If keeping a tidy space is important to you write out a cleaning plan with them at the beginning of the semester. Maybe you like to go to bed before 10:00 set quiet hours from day one. If you make these rules from the beginning the whole semester will run smoothly.
2. Stay calm.
If you approach a problem with your roommate in a calm way they are more likely to listen to you and understand the problem, opposed to being upset and yelling at you. If you start off yelling or confrontational they will not react in a calm way. You want to be able to have open conversations and speak freely.
3. You have to give respect to get respect.
If you don't listen to your roommate and make an effort to work with them, they aren't going to want to work with you. Be aware of how you treat them because sometimes you're the problem and you don't realize it.
4. Set boundaries.
It's important to feel safe and comfortable in your new home. If they do something that you aren't okay with speak up. You are entitled to feel safe in your space. If they have a guest over that makes you feel uncomfortable tell them, if you need time to yourself and they don't respect it let them know.
5. Use your RA.
Your RA is there to help you in tough situations, they don't mind setting up a meeting for you guys to talk in a healthy environment. Sometimes having a mediator is really helpful, especially when you aren't really close to your roommate. You don't need to feel annoying, they truly love helping you figure out your first year at college.