The Daily Illini

How to lose your roommate in 10 days

By Marissa Plescia, Assistant Features Editor

Living with a roommate is brand new territory for a lot of people. It’s not like sharing a room with a sibling back home. You’re living with someone who may be a complete stranger and for some, it works out great. But for others, not so much. Here is a day-by-day list of what not to do as a roommate.

Day 1: Cling-wrap

Of course, you should try and get along with your roommate. For a lot of people, your roommate is the first person you know on campus. However, it is important for both you and your roommate to make your own place at school. You’ll be seeing a lot of each other and regardless of if you get along or not, you both might need some space every now and then. So be sure to find some of your own interests and don’t be afraid to branch out into different friend groups.

Day 2: Swiper no swiping

Remember: what’s theirs is not always yours and vice versa. Don’t go stealing your roommate’s clothes or using their things without asking. Some of you might get a roommate who’s perfectly fine with you using their things, but still always ask permission first. Furthermore, there are two sides to every dorm room. Be sure to keep your things on your side and allow your roommate to have full access to their side.

Day 3: Food stealing

Food is precious cargo on campus and stealing someone’s food can frankly be one of the quickest ways to anger someone. Similar to Day 2, always ask permission if you want to eat someone’s food. And that being said, your roommate should do the same to you. You paid for that food and money is not always abundant as a college student.

Day 4: The pig-stye

I’ll admit that this is something I struggled with as a freshman. I tend to be the messy roommate and sometimes it’s hard to always keep up with tidying your room. I’m not saying your room has to be spotless 24/7, but you should still be mindful of your roommate. If you do have things laying around, keep it on your side of the room. Also, there is a difference between being messy and being dirty. Clean up your food, wash your bedding and clothes and stay sanitary. Y’all are living in close quarters.

Day 5: Hibernation

As I said with Day 1, you both are going to need your own space sometimes. And while, yes, the room belongs to both of you, sometimes it’s good to get out of there and give your roommate some alone time from now and then. A good way to do this is to study outside of the room. Sometimes your roommate (or you, too) might want to have friends over, but don’t want to be disruptive if you’re doing homework. So try going doing your work at the library or a coffee shop.

Day 6: Inviting significant others over

Like I said, the room belongs to both of you, so don’t take advantage of it. There is nothing more uncomfortable than always third-wheeling it in your own room. That’s not to say that you should never have your significant other in the room, just try to keep it limited. Give your roommate a heads up if you’re having your boyfriend or girlfriend over, and please keep the PDA to a minimum. Your roommate doesn’t need to see that.

Day 7: The night owl

College messes with your sleep schedule, no doubt about that. However, be mindful of your roommate’s sleep schedule, too. Don’t be up late studying with the light on in the room until 3 a.m. every night. That being said, try not to go to bed at 8 p.m. every night either. Every now and then is fine, but try to stick to a relatively normal sleep schedule or figure out a compromise. My roommate and I always had a system where if one of us went to bed earlier than the other, we always turned off the main lights, but we would keep on a smaller light so the other person could see.

Day 8: Wild partying

People have their nights in college, but don’t make it a habit. If your roommate has an early class in the morning or an exam the next day, the last thing he or she wants to deal is taking care of you. If you do go out, try to stay in control because some rough things can happen in your room if you don’t. If you’re coming home late, keep the noise to a minimum so you don’t wake your roommate.

Day 9: Ignorance

The opposite of Day 1. Once again, you don’t have to be best friends with your roommate, but you shouldn’t straight up ignore them either. Communicate with each other, get to know things about one another and speak up if something is bothering you.

Day 10: Passive aggressiveness

Just like any good relationship, communication is key if you’re living together. If you don’t like something your roommate is doing, don’t make passive aggressive comments. Just come out and say whatever is bothering you. That is the quickest and healthiest way to get things resolved rather than just hoping your roommate gets the hint. It creates a much more open environment and gives your roommate the opportunity to do the same.

Marissa is a junior in Media. 

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