After a semester together, freshmen struggle to coexist with roommates
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second installment of an ongoing series examining how the roommate situations change throughout the year for five freshmen.*
Sarah expected that she and her roommates would get along, but in the months since she was first interviewed, she has adopted a different attitude. Now she says her focus is on compromising and coexisting to keep conflict to a minimum.
“It’s necessary to consistently compromise and find a middle ground,” Sarah said. “We’ve learned to co-exist mainly. It’s been a learning process. We’ve had our issues but hopefully now we’ve gotten past them.”
Allen also was optimistic about his roommate situation at the start of the year. He said he was somewhat concerned with having guests over, but he seemed satisfied with everything else. Since then, his roommate moved out and he now is living with someone new.
Allen said his change in roommates was unexpected, but that despite not really having a relationship, he and his new roommate respect each other.
“We’re both quiet, and we respect each other’s habits,” Allen said. “I stay up late some nights, so I use headphones and the lowest brightness setting on my laptop.”
Candace also has changed roommates. Her original roommate was on the same sports team as she was and she said the time that they had to spend together with practices and games and tournaments was probably the root of their problem.
“My roommate and I spent a lot of time together, maybe too much time,” Candace said. “That must be the reason why we didn’t really get along once we were back in the room. Therefore I preferred to move into another room.”
Now that she has a new roommate, Candace said, her goal is to be respectful to each other.
Alexis started college after having lived with her roommate over the summer. Now they are still roommates and she said they do most things together.
“We are close, we tell each other everything,” Alexis said. “When we aren’t in classes, we are always together.”
So far, Alexis said, their only conflict was about the temperature of the room and they resolved that by switching beds.
Brian shared a room with his brother before coming to college, and he said that that helped prepare him for living with a roommate. He is still with his original roommate and said that despite them not being best friends or sharing any interests, they still are able to live well together.
“We do not have the same interests or even schedule so we do not see each other too much, but there is no drama and nothing to complain about,” Brian said.
*The names have been changed to protect students’ privacy.
Samantha Giedris can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.