Drama is never a good thing, but roommate drama is especially taxing. I think that is because there is no escape from it. When you have drama with your roommate, the aura of your living area is off. It is full of tension and awkwardness that is sometimes so palpable that you feel as though you can cut whatever negative feeling is in the air with a knife. Roommate drama is also really disappointing to have. Initially, when you move in with someone, especially if it is someone you already know, you have this picture in your head that everything will be smooth sailing. There will be laughter every day and movie nights happening every night. This, however, is a reality that is far out of reach because we are all human and are bound to have our off-days. Roommate drama sucks, that is without question, but it is also extremely normal. Everyone that has had a roommate has been through roommate drama. The important thing about roommate drama to note is that you and your roommate are capable of growing from it so long as you go about the drama in the correct way. These tips on how to go about roommate drama will surely help you to smooth over whatever conflict you and roommate are facing. So, read further and get one step closer to a peaceful environment and a mended friendship.
1. Reflect On What The Issue Is
Sometimes when we get a negative feeling, we fail to reflect on what caused it. We do not consider whether whatever stirred our emotions is even reasonable, and we fail to consider whether we caused the negative emotion ourselves. It is important to evaluate what the issue is, if it is worth bringing up, and if it is reasonable before moving forward and discussing the matter over with your roommate.
2. Think Of What You Could Be Doing
If after pondering over what the issue is and deciding that it is due to something your roommate is doing (i.e. them not washing the dishes or them being rude to you), you should also reflect on what you might be doing wrong too. In almost all cases, problems are caused by both parties – everyone is at fault 50/50. Perhaps your roommate is being rude to you because you are moody with her when you get back home from your classes. Perhaps your roommate doesn’t do the dishes because you never pick up after yourself. It is necessary to “check yourself before you wreck yourself,” and perhaps try putting yourself in your roommate’s shoes before jumping down their throat about an issue.
3. Communicate With Your Roommate
Once you have reflected on the situation and yourself, then you can safely move forward and communicate with your roommate about the issue so that you can resolve your roommate drama. It is helpful to have this conversation in person so that no words get misconstrued. Emotion is hard to display over text and body language and the tone in which you say things plays a big role on how the message comes across to the other person. Talking it out is the best method for alleviating any roommate drama, after all, communication is key!
4. Use “I” Statements Not “You” Statements
If you go in saying a bunch of you statements such as, “you never do the dishes,” “you always fail to consider my feelings,” and “you are wrong with the way you go about doing things,” it is going to cause defensiveness to stir within your roommate and that will ultimately lead to a bigger fight. Instead, go in with saying things like, “I felt hurt when you said this,” “I would appreciate it if you did this,” and “I would really like it if we could do this instead.” When you place the focus on yourself, it will likely cause the conversation to go over more smoothly since your roommate won’t feel as targeted.
5. Go In With Listening Ears
When you have a problem with your roommate, it is easy to just close yourself off to whatever they have to say. Afterall, it is you that has a problem with them so they are not allowed to fire back at you. However, when you open yourself up to having a conversation with your roommate, you have to expect that they will also have issues with you too. Listen to what they say, be sensitive to it, and make reasonable decisions on how to adjust your behavior accordingly. You cannot expect others to make changes to accommodate you if you are unwilling to do the same.
6. Do Not Allow Yourself To Get Walked On
When your roommate inevitably tells you about whatever problems they have, it is important to not just mindlessly say “yes” and “okay.” It is important you think about what you are agreeing to before you agree to it. Do not just conform your behavior for the sake of peace and to please your roommate, do it because you think it is the right thing to do.
7. Set Fair Boundaries
Boundaries allow you and your roommate to have enough space to get along more easily. Think of it this way: it is easier for plants to bloom when they have enough space to flourish. Boundaries will allow you and your roommate’s friendship to flourish. Some examples of boundaries are: “do not touch my things without my permission,” and, “do not comment on things about me that I am unable to change in around 5 minutes time.”
8. Find Compromise
At the end of the conversation, both parties should feel satisfied with the conclusion that was drawn. No one is going to be 100% happy, but both parties should feel equally happier than before. It also important to end it with a hug because, I mean, you guys did decide to live together for a reason. Don’t forget that you two are friends and this conflict is only going to bring you two closer.
Roommate drama is difficult for anybody but hopefully, these tips will help you navigate whatever conflict you are facing a little more easily. Which of these tips stuck out most to you? Do you have any other roommate drama tips? Share your answers in the comments below!
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Hello! My name is Sara Bowers and I am a Senior at Azusa Pacific University where I am double majoring in Allied Health and Honors Humanities and minoring in Psychology. As a young girl, I loved to write and English became my favorite subject very quickly. The sciences also intrigued me and I was often told to choose one path, but I did not want to sacrifice either of my passions. It turns out I didn't have to and thanks to the many novels read in my Humanities courses and the writing prompts I tackled alongside them, my love of writing was further affirmed and I grew more confident that I made the correct decision in pursuing both paths. I have a heart for helping people by any means necessary, so if that means helping someone with a physical ailment, informing someone of the best places to eat, or giving tips to calm anxiety, I am all for it. So, there you have it - that's me! Thank you for taking the time out of your day to get to know me a little bit! I hope you stop by and check out more of my articles in the future!