Bad Roommate Series Launch
In my experience working for the Housing and Residential Programs department here at Angelo State University, I have stumbled upon one central truth pertaining to having a roommate: if you can’t name a time in your life when you were frustrated by having a bad roommate, then you probably were a bad roommate. Even the best of roommates can get under your skin after a while.
Usually by the time I get called in, residents are already at the “I-can’t-spend-another-night-in-this-hellhole” stage, and it’s too late. Having a roommate in college is like a social experiment where two or more random individuals are placed into a new surrounding and forced to interact/mingle with each other while learning how to deal with the stress of college. It’s like Big Brother on CBS, only there’s no prize at the end of finals in May, and cameras do not capture every waking moment of your life.
It’s still a rewarding experience, though. Whether you like it or not, having a roommate teaches you many life lessons about being a respectful adult.
I live and breath for roommate conflict resolution. One of the highlights of my job is getting called in to talk to roommates and try to calm them down to the point where they are open to reason. Usually by the time I get called in, residents are already at the “I-can’t-spend-another-night-in-this-hellhole” stage, and it’s too late. All I can do at that point is tell them that they should have come to their RA after the first time their roommate ate their Ramen noodles or left dishes in the sink.
Honestly, I’ve heard it all. And honestly, it’s always the same narrative just with different variables.
For those of you who have not yet come to college and who are nervous about the whole “I have to live with a stranger” thing, I really do not mean to scare you. There are many steps you can take to ensure that you have a positive experience with any type of roommate.
I’ve broken down the different types of bad roommates into a series of blogs that will be posted throughout the course of this semester. My plan is to offer helpful solutions as to how to deal with a bad roommate and how to avoid unintentionally becoming a bad roommate.