Click With Roommate

It’s Okay to Not Click with Your Roommate

Your roommate isn’t who you thought they would be, and now you’re hiding away in the library or bathroom hoping for a change. Is it too late to switch? Will the awkwardness pass? Or will you be stuck with a problem child until May?

You may have envisioned a life of fun and friendship with your roommate but instead, you were greeted with the exact opposite of their misleading Facebook profile.

Going into freshman year is a terrifying experience, especially for those who struggle in new social settings. You may even be an upperclassman who needed to settle for a random roommate.

Unfortunately, not everyone can match your style of living. Some problems can result from lying on the roommate personality test, or you may just have plain bad luck.

Luckily, you are not the only one who has encountered roommate problems!

A sophomore, who wishes to remain anonymous, shared their own story, recounting a problem with their suitemate last year.

The student said, “Everything was fine in the beginning.” However, once “most of the [students] got comfortable with each other” and shared classes, they began to use the common room for “homework and music at night.”

There was a suitemate who was annoyed by the noise and constantly complained, despite the music being played at a low volume.

“You know that the walls are paper thin,” the student continued, “you can breathe in one room, and you’ll hear it in two rooms down.”

You would think that a noise complaint is not that bad, but like most roommate horror stories, things began to spiral out of control. The complaints quickly morphed into yelling and angry outbursts. RA meetings were set up, resulting in no resolution.

So, what do you do when you’ve become helpless in this kind of situation? This sophomore advises to put on a happy face and kill them with kindness. Thankfully, the roommate moved out before their problem progressed any further.

This is an extreme case. You may just be bothered by your roommate’s sleep schedule or their need to watch The Office, while you’re trying to write an essay.

Professors are always open to hearing your problems, especially your first-year seminar professor.

Kenneth Campbell, Ph.D., a professor of history and anthropology, commented on the role of professors who teach first-year seminar classes.

He said, “I am open to having students come to me with questions about residential life. If I do not know the answers, I can always refer them to my Peer Learning Assistant (PLA) or to the appropriate person.”  PLAs are students at Monmouth who help with student questions and concerns.

Roommate problems are common. I have been in them, as well as my friends. Even alumni and former Outlook Editor, Jenna Amore Wheeler, has had roommate issues.

Wheeler said, “Sophomore year, I was paired with a random roommate. We started out alright, but as the semester went on, she got a new boyfriend. Suddenly, he had all but moved into our room with us.”

Significant others can be a major issue, simply because sharing space with a stranger can make any person anxious.

After many meetings with residential life, Wheeler’s experience turned sour as the boyfriend was given a key-copy of his own, unbeknownst to the residental life staff. After numerous complaints from both Wheeler and her parents continued, it was settled to separate the two.

But the nightmare wasn’t over yet. When Wheeler’s new roommate moved in, they encountered a disgusting surprise.

She said, “I opened my mini-fridge to put food in and discovered that the last person to be in the room, my former roommate, had filled the fridge completely with urine.”

That was the end of her struggle with the terrible roommate, and obviously, the fridge was replaced! She immediately clicked with her new roommate, and they are still best friends.

Wheeler said, “Colleges usually want students to just talk it out or mediate, but I don’t feel that’s always the best solution. Even if you’re nervous, you need to stand up for yourself.”

She continued, “Go to a trusted advisor or [Resisdential Assistant] RA and make yourself be heard.”

She continued, “It’s your college experience, your tuition dollars, and your life. You need to enjoy it, and you need to live in an environment where you feel safe.”

Make use of your professors, PLA, and RA.

Do not let your residential troubles affect your college experience. This is a time for fun and exciting adventures!

If your roommate thinks that getting a pet hamster (which is a nocturnal animal, by the way) is the best thing to do during finals week, perhaps you should tell them otherwise.

You have a voice. You have the power. Do not settle for mediocrity, and do not let someone else break you down.

PHOTO TAKEN by Skylar Daley