The Stressed Student's Guide To Surviving Your Mid-Semester Roommate Struggles

The Stressed Student's Guide To Surviving Your Mid-Semester Roommate Struggles

College is stressful enough without adding in the awkwardness that is living with a complete stranger.
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Many people are fortunate enough to know their assigned roommate, but for those of us who were forced to live with someone they have never met, it can be a difficult transition. The first few weeks — also known as the “honeymoon phase” — wear off pretty quickly, and soon you’re left wondering why things aren’t clicking as you hoped they would.

But don’t panic. Arguments are inevitable, especially as the dust settles and you both adjust to living with each other for the first time. You may have started out as complete strangers, but you have the potential to become the best of friends!

Here are a few pointers on how to survive disagreements and differences with your roommate, so you can finish the semester with a strong friendship!

Talk to your roommate. Be open about your preferences.

Maybe you like having the room super cold, with the AC set to as low as it will go, and you only do your homework between the hours of 7 and 9 am. Maybe you binge-watch “Stranger Things” as a way to relax at night. Regardless of what your specific tastes are, make sure you relay it to your roommate! It’s much better to communicate ahead of time than get completely moved in, to realize they are your polar opposite.

Understand they have a different background than you.

It’s okay that your new roommate has a different upbringing, is from a different state, or has a different home life. College is all about trying new things and learning from people who aren’t the same. That’s the beauty of a random roommate, even though it may seem scary at first. If you are ever lacking in conversation with them, a good place to start is always their major. Chances are, they’re very passionate about their field and would love to talk about how they fell in love with it!

Respect their wishes, as long as they aren’t hurting you.

Like I said earlier, disagreements are going to happen. You won’t always “win” the argument, and that’s okay. Being roommates with someone is literally signing a contract to share your space with someone who may or may not use it the way you would have. Their decorations, music, and temperature may not be your top choice, and that’s okay. As long as their decisions aren’t harming you in any way, they are free to live however they choose, within reason. (Cleanliness of the room, however, is a different story altogether...)

If you get into a disagreement, try to keep a level head.

As much as you hate that they took one of your Easy Mac cups without asking, you have to remember that you are required to live with this person for another semester. Even if it’s difficult to, the gentler, level-headed approach is always best. More often times than not, your roommate means well. You may not see eye-to-eye in the moment, but through communication with them, larger scale arguments can be avoided.

Find common ground, something you both enjoy.

Lastly, and most importantly, find a way to connect with your roommate. For each set, the shared interest or hobby is completely different. Whether it’s the newest trends, a news topic, or a sport, connecting with your roommate in some way makes the transition much easier. It’s so much nicer to be able to find a friend in your roommate, rather than an enemy you wish you didn’t come home to. So take time to build this friendship like you would any other. Try getting to know your roommate’s likes and dislikes, because you’re more alike than you think!

Don’t worry. You can and will survive this semester, roommate struggles and all. Try to keep your head up, and don’t stress too much about it. You and your roommate will be back to being best friends before the week is out.

Cover Image Credit: Warner Bros. TV

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Sorry Not Sorry, My Parents Paid For My Coachella Trip

No haters are going to bring me down.
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With Coachella officially over, lives can go back to normal and we can all relive Beyonce’s performance online for years to come. Or, if you were like me and actually there, you can replay the experience in your mind for the rest of your life, holding dear to the memories of an epic weekend and a cultural experience like no other on the planet.

And I want to be clear about the Beyonce show: it really was that good.

But with any big event beloved by many, there will always be the haters on the other side. The #nochella’s, the haters of all things ‘Chella fashion. And let me just say this, the flower headbands aren’t cultural appropriation, they’re simply items of clothing used to express the stylistic tendency of a fashion-forward event.

Because yes, the music, and sure, the art, but so much of what Coachella is, really, is about the fashion and what you and your friends are wearing. It's supposed to be fun, not political! Anyway, back to the main point of this.

One of the biggest things people love to hate on about Coachella is the fact that many of the attendees have their tickets bought for them by their parents.

Sorry? It’s not my fault that my parents have enough money to buy their daughter and her friends the gift of going to one of the most amazing melting pots of all things weird and beautiful. It’s not my fault about your life, and it’s none of your business about mine.

All my life, I’ve dealt with people commenting on me, mostly liking, but there are always a few that seem upset about the way I live my life.

One time, I was riding my dolphin out in Turks and Cacaos, (“riding” is the act of holding onto their fin as they swim and you sort of glide next to them. It’s a beautiful, transformative experience between human and animal and I really think, when I looked in my dolphin’s eye, that we made a connection that will last forever) and someone I knew threw shade my way for getting to do it.

Don’t make me be the bad guy.

I felt shame for years after my 16th birthday, where my parents got me an Escalade. People at school made fun of me (especially after I drove into a ditch...oops!) and said I didn’t deserve the things I got in life.

I can think of a lot of people who probably don't deserve the things in life that they get, but you don't hear me hating on them (that's why we vote, people). Well, I’m sick of being made to feel guilty about the luxuries I’m given, because they’ve made me who I am, and I love me.

I’m a good person.

I’m not going to let the Coachella haters bring me down anymore. Did my parents buy my ticket and VIP housing? Yes. Am I sorry about that? Absolutely not.

Sorry, not sorry!

Cover Image Credit: Kaycie Allen

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Kendrick Lamar Lost The Grammy, But Won The Pulitzer

DAMN.
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This year was one for the history books, as Kendrick Lamar won a Pulitzer Prize for his newest album "DAMN". This is a huge change, as all winners in that category in the past have been either of the classical or jazz genres. This is the first year that a different type of album, one of hip-hop no less won this coveted prize.

Reports said that the album "DAMN" was a unanimous choice amongst the jury in charge of picking who the awards go to. The board even stated that the album “a virtuosic song collection unified by its vernacular authenticity and rhythmic dynamism that offers affecting vignettes capturing the complexity of modern African-American life” (NYTimes). Even the other nominees express their agreement with giving the prize to Lamar and are honored to be runner-ups to such a fantastic artist. They even expressed that they are fans of the artist.

This is a huge step for the hip-hop genre, as it tends to be overlooked when it comes to awards. Lamar was up for a Grammy this year in the category "Album of the Year" for the album, "DAMN," but lost to Bruno Mars's "24K Magic". This has been a common occurrence in the Grammy world, as hip-hop artists may be nominated, but they rarely win the Grammy for the best album, the only exception being Lauryn Hill and OutKast.

The Pulitzer seemed like the last kind of Prize that would go make a Grammy sound less than it is, but it did just that when it awarded Lamar the prize. It shows a step into a more integrated kind of world and an appreciation for the lyrical story that each kind of musician tells. This step also shows that the Pulitzer acknowledges all kinds of music that deserved to be recognized, whether it be classical, jazz, or the newest inductee, hip-hop.

Cover Image Credit: Wikipedia

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