By Kimberly Ilkowski
Growing up, you were one of the lucky ones if you didn’t have to share your room with a sibling. Having your own room to take care of or completely destroy is a blessing. However, college is the great equalizer, forcing inhabitants to find an ounce of privacy in a 175-square feet room.
This is why it’s more important than ever to show a little R-E-S-P-E-C-T to your roommate. Treating others how you wish to be treated holds the most truth when it comes to living with other people, especially those who were total strangers to you a mere few months ago.
Do your part: Sharing a room means sharing responsibilities, no matter how you feel about the person. You can’t passive-aggressively not take out the trash until it’s overflowing. The only thing that’s going to be solved is where the roaches build their new home. So take out the Lysol wipes and turn on the vacuum, because it’s way better to hate each other in a clean room than a dirty one.
Don’t talk smack: You have to spend the entire year living under the same roof as this person; the least you could do is accept their differences. We’re all a little quirky, so don’t go around your floor laughing about the fact that your roommate has 200 mint condition Yuh-Gi-Oh cards when you scream in your sleep and walk around with no pants on. You don’t hear your roommate going around gossiping about your demon-possessed self, so quit spreading the mean comments.
Do communicate: Try to be on the same page as your roommate. If you don’t like having 10 people in the room at one time, say something. If you don’t like the TV being left on overnight, say something. If you don’t like your roommate performing voodoo rituals, DEAR GOD SAY SOMETHING. The point here is that you’re never going to know what the other needs unless you speak up and talk things out.
Don’t just take things: Just because your favorite snack is Oreos and your roommate’s mom bought them in bulk doesn’t mean you can help yourself to a little dessert. Just because you wear the same sized clothing as your roommate doesn’t mean you can go shopping in their closet while they’re at class. Take two seconds out of your life to send your roommate a text asking to use their belongings, instead of walking around campus in their shirt, breath freshly smelling like chocolate cookie and vanilla icing.