How to deal with a bad roommate

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Leaving the comfort of your room at home and having to share a room with a stranger does not sound particularly ideal. However, if you’re going to college and are planning to live in the dorms, you do not really have much choice. Living with a roommate is cost effective, and you two might even end up becoming friends for life.

A stroke of bad luck, however, may leave you stuck with a person you would rather not live with. In dorms you don’t get to choose your roommate, and you can only hope you don’t get a bad one. Of course, differences are normal and expected when two people with different mannerisms and interests are thrown together. However, there are people who are just plain inconsiderate, mean, disrespectful, messy, and utterly unbearable. If you find yourself stuck with such a case, here are some ways you can deal.

Set some ground rules

If you let your bad roommate have their way, they will end up taking over the room and inconveniencing you in every little thing. This is why you should sit down with them and set down some house rules and boundaries that need to be respected.

This is the time when you get to divide chores and decide how to share space. Decide on cleaning and discuss the issue of bringing visitors to the room.

Talk to them

Confronting a non-considerate, selfish person may not always work out in your favor, but this should be your first step towards trying to solve your differences. Inform them what it is they do that irritates you and how they can change. Make sure to use a calm approach. If you yell at them when they make you upset, it will most likely make things worse.

Involve yourself in outdoor activities

Getting out of the room a lot is one sure way of getting past your bad roommate situation. If the thought of staying in the same room as them makes you miserable, involve yourself in campus activities that keep you busy so that you’re not always in your room moping. Do not allow a bad roommate to define your college experience.

Seek help

Once you have tried talking to your roommate, spent time away from the room, and set rules, it may be time to go get a neutral person who can help you bridge your differences. A mediator will help you two see from each other’s perspective, and help you come to a compromise.

Ask for a roommate reassignment

Some situations cannot be helped no matter how hard you try. If dealing with your bad roommate becomes impossible, terminating your living arrangement might be the only option left. This is a hard thing to achieve, especially with college dorms, but take your chances and seek the help of your Residence Assistant.

Getting yourself out of a bad roommate situation is highly important because miserable living conditions can take a toll on your mental health. This will have a negative effect on your studies and social life as well. Strive to have a room that you’re glad to get back to after a gruelling day in class.

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