There are many ways to deal with a less than perfect roommate, so there’s no reason why you should have to suffer. Whether your roommate is annoying, clocks ridiculous hours that keep you awake or is a party animal, you can cope so that you don’t hate going home at the end of each day. Try out these ways to deal with a less than perfect roommate and you might be surprised to find harmony and relaxation before you know it.
1. Have a Talk
It might not be the easiest of the ways to deal with a less than perfect roommate, but having a heart to heart talk might be all you need to do. Maybe your roommate doesn’t realize that her late-night movie marathons or the huge number of friends stopping by all the time are bothering you. Clue her in and she might have no problem laying off for your sake.
2. Set Boundaries
Whether or not your roommate is open to making concessions to you, it’s important to set boundaries with each other. For example, maybe you can agree to set times where she can have a party, provided guests stay out of your room and leave before dawn arrives. Maybe you could each label food you don’t want the other one eating and always ask before borrowing each other’s clothes. This is an easy way to keep the respect there for both of you.
3. Divide Chores
Is your roommate a slob? It might be as simple as dividing chores. Talk with your roommate about what tasks she doesn’t mind doing and then assign yourself the ones you don’t hate. Maybe she’ll clean the bathroom and you’ll mop the floors. This way, you won’t continue being resentful about her lack of help around the house and everything will get done.
4. Join Her
Maybe your roommate’s constant flow of friends annoys you. Have you considered joining the fun? Maybe if you head out to the living room and share a drink and a game of charades, you’ll enjoy yourself and won’t be so upset the next time a group of people fill your house or apartment. Becoming friends with your roommate’s friends gives you a built in opportunity to spend time with people you enjoy.
5. Cool off
There’s no doubt that dirty clothes all over the kitchen and disgusting clumps of hair in the shower make you mad. It’s fine to be angry with your roommate, but you probably want to cool off a bit before you confront her. Take a break and gather your thoughts so you can talk with a level head when you ask her to clean up her mess instead of leaving it. Confronting her while you’re furious means you might say things you don’t mean and strain your relationship further.
6. Seek Help
If you live in a dorm room or have other roommates, you likely have people who can back you up. Talk to your dorm adviser and ask that she have a talk with your roommate regarding what’s allowed and what isn’t. If you have other roommates, ask them to join you as you work through the problem with your annoying roommate. Safety in numbers, right?
7. Look for a New Place to Live
This should be your last resort, but if going home is something you dread, it might be time to cut your losses and look for new housing. Talk to your dorm adviser about making a switch to a new room. If you live in an apartment, talk to your landlord about a new unit. Make sure you meet and talk to your new roommate before you take the plunge or you could just wind up back in the same situation.
Have you ever had a bad roommate? How did you cope?