Living with people is a make or break moment for any relationship, so moving in with your college roommates, especially with ones you don’t know, is a pretty high-stress situation. If you and your roommate just can’t get along this guide will give you tips and tricks to last the school year.
First things first
If you and you’re college roommates don’t get along at the start of the year that doesn’t mean you’ll constantly be fighting or won’t become friends. The first couple of weeks at college can be stressful and overwhelming, so give them and you a chance to adjust before making any decisions about being friends forever. Another thing to remember is you don’t need to be besties with your college roommates. The beauty of college is amazing opportunities to meet new people. Branch out beyond your roommates and you’re sure to find friends.
Tell your roommates how you feel
A lot of the time we believe how we feel is obvious to those around us. It’s not. As much as you can think you and your roommate are never going to be friends, the exact opposite can be said for how they’re thinking. You’ll never know unless you tell them how you feel. Sit your college roommates down and let them know how you feel. This can be anything from how clean the room is to how you wish you spent more time together. It can be scary sitting down with your college roommates to have one of these discussions but without it, everyone is assuming how the other feels and that is guaranteed to lead to confusion.
Make a plan of how to move forward
Once you’ve sat down and laid out your concerns (also be sure to listen to any concerns your roommate may have) it’s important to come up with a plan on how to tackle them. It’s all well and good talking about wanting to spend more time together, but until you make concrete plans there’s no guarantee that will happen. Something as simple as figuring out when your schedules overlap so you can grab coffee together once a week or so is a great first step.
Your plans don’t always have to be explicitly related to how you feel to be useful in fixing your relationship with your college roommates. Making plans for outside your room helps you to get to know your roommates more and helps to defuse some of the tension. Try out things that each of you likes and you might learn something new.
Know when to walk away
As much as you might want to save your relationship with your college roommates you also need to recognize when to walk away. If you’re the only one putting in the effort to fix your relationship, or if nothing you are doing fixes the situation, then there’s not much else you can do.
If it reaches the point where you give up on being friends always remember to remain civil with your roommate, no matter how difficult. You need to last the rest of the year together and the constant back and forth between you won’t help anyone out. Don’t stoop down to their level or let their attitude bother you too much, just try to be the better person.
In a worst-case scenario where you need to move out from your roommate situation, be sure to run the problem by some of your other friends with roommates to see if they’ve dealt with any similar situations or have any advice.