The following advice on how to survive in the dorm comes from: The Freshman Survival Guide
Don't be a doormat...
Be honest right from the start with your roommate about what you like and don’t like.
if you find yourself irritated with something your roommate is doing, you owe it to him or her to say so and to say so directly. There’s nothing worse than finding out your roommate has been complaining to everyone else on the floor about your irritating habits without the courtesy of keeping you up to date. Establishing a pattern of addressing problems as they arise will encourage your roommate to be honest, too.
Don’t Be a Princess/Prince...
That’s when you expect everyone to adjust to your way of doing things.
The first shock of dorm life can be lack of personal space; often a student’s living space is one-half the size of his or her living space at home.
Most students don’t go to their RAs enough. University of Scranton RA Bryan Heinline says people are often reluctant to admit they’re having trouble with roommates (and lots of other things RAs can help with). So keep in mind that there’s a reason your college put a person up the hall from you whose job it is to keep an eye out for you. It’s almost as if they know you might need help.
The ideal situation is probably when your best friend is not your roommate. Sometimes living with your best friend makes it hard to bring up annoying little issues, the things a friend should overlook but that can drive a roommate crazy.
Two issues tend to make things fall apart between roommates: noise and visitors. Address these problems before they become unbearable and trigger World War III. Sometimes the other person is unaware, and sometimes he or she is just inconsiderate.
Here’s a quick list of strategies for communicating positively and keeping things friendly:
- Don’t accuse. Use “I” statements. Don’t say, “You are so inconsiderate.” This accusation may well be true, but instead say, “When you leave your wet towel on my bed, I feel like you don’t care.” This lets your roommate know about the problem behavior but gives him or her room to change it. Accusations lead to arguments. “I” statements can lead to solutions.
- Catch your roommate doing something good and say thanks. It reinforces the behavior you want to increase without being negative.
- Offer a little support. If things are getting tense (but you’re still speaking to each other), ask how your roommate is doing. Sometimes stress shows up as inconsiderate behavior.
here are a few tips to create long-lasting roomie love.
Tip 1: Communication—Like any good relationship, communication is key; the same with having a roommate.
- Here is a list of what you should discuss before you move in:
1. How clean a person are you?
2. Are you a Morning bird or a night owl?
3. Will we be sharing food? Clothes?
4. What is it okay to have friends over? When is it not okay? What about people of the opposite sex?
Tip 2: The honeymoon period will end. The first few weeks of class is a great time. You might love your roommate and that you’re living together. But by the time the first exam rolls around, you may be ready to tear each other’s hair out. The hair-tearing-out time is a good time to sit down and make a roommate contract. You can do this on your own or with your RA if you need a mediator.
Tip 3: Gossip—Never talk about your roommate behind his or her back. If you have to complain to someone, talk to your very, very close friends, parents, siblings, or your RA. Your RA is living on the floor with you for a reason. Use them for advice on how to deal with or talk to your roommate.
Tip 4: Clean—Please clean your room! Do your laundry, take your trash out, and using a well-placed air freshener is an excellent idea. Your roommate will thank you. Your floor mates will thank you. Your RA will thank you. Smells travel through walls and closed doors.