Choose Your Roommates Wisely
College is a time that’s nothing short of exciting. You’re out and about and getting that first taste of adulthood. If you aren’t living at home or staying in a college dorm, this probably means you’re getting an apartment off campus with roommates. Believe me, the latter option is as cool as it sounds.
I could almost picture what you’re thinking, and it’s probably exactly what I was thinking. You’d be living in a cool place with your best friends, having wild parties and riding the year lease like it’s one long chill out session. It’s a perfect thought, but a bittersweet reality that can be way more bitter than sweet.
I shared an apartment with my two best friends from high school. Though we had amazing times, it was also kind of a nightmare. We knew each other from cover to cover, and this didn’t do well in the boundaries department. Whereas when you move in with a stranger, you’re trying to find a middle ground, friends often feel like they know you well enough to do as they please, and you’ll be cool with it. It’s also a lot more difficult to ask your friends to do the dishes or tone down the music while you’re trying to study than it is to ask a stranger.
With friends, it’s also harder to say ‘no’ to hanging out when you really need to get stuff done. For example, my roommates and I had a history of going out and being wild teenagers. The reality that some of us had off switches and times when we’d want to be alone didn’t process with one of our friends. He’d be in a constant party mode and expect us to join him even if we were studying or sleeping.
The dishes on this particular roommate’s end never got done, either. In fact, they’d usually end up in an unwashed pile in his room. When we brought it up to him, he’d wave it off as nothing. This went well with no one in the apartment, and arguments became a frequent thing. It got to the point where we couldn’t stand the sight of him and even tried to kick him out. It wasn’t easy. He was one of our best friends. We’d known him for six years, and he would never fail to remind us of this fact. I eventually left the apartment and moved in with someone else. I just couldn’t handle it.
After that situation, I never moved in with friends again, though, it won’t be the same for everyone. If you know you and your friends want the same things, by all means move in together, but heed my warning.