4 answers

How to deal with a rude roommate?

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I'll be dorming during college and I am concerned about what I should do if my roommate is rude or doesn't respect my boundaries. #collegelife

4 answers

Breanna’s Answer


Bibi, this is a really good question and understandable concern. I think majority of people deal with an issue once in a time with a roommate.

This is bound to occur with at least one of you. It can be difficult, depending on the rooming situations, to be in close quarters with someone spending every waking moment together. You have to respect their preferences, and at times compromise. I think it would be good to ask questions about space, boundaries, and habits during the first few days together, then you can know how to respect their boundaries, and they can understand your point of view. I would make a list of things that are important to you. I know when I was living with a girl in college, some issues we had to discuss were:

  • Schedules, one may go to bed early and wake up early and the other may go to bed late and wake up late - discuss getting ready for bed/class the next day, etc.
  • Fridge, is everything fair game or only use what you buy
  • Common space, rules/expectations
  • TV, sleeping with it on or off
  • Study Habits, study in the room or study outside the room in the library or elsewhere

Remember, they are going through the same thing learning to live with you. If tension arises down the road, I would personally deal with it immediately. If in the future things bother you, take time to understand why it's bothering you, is it bothering you due to stress/tiredness or is it a true issue, and then discuss with them in a calm matter.

Also, understand people handle stress differently. I know my roommate and I weren't as close during finals, big tests, sporting events (my roommate played softball for the University), or when we went home from breaks. We both had a tendency to kind of "shut down" in readiness to go home and have our own space again, since we both were several hours from home.

I hope this helps!

Gail’s Answer


Hi Bibi, interesting question! I have found there are rude people everywhere.  It is important to learn how to deal with them.  My advice-  be polite and respectful yourself.  People usually respond in kind.  Walk away from the rudeness if possible, but if you can't, then talk it out calmly and respectfully.  In the case of a roommate, perhaps you would consider a get-to-know-you conversation and ask them about areas that are of concern to you. Your roommate may have similar concerns about you!  It takes time to get to know people, so give yourself a chance to get to know the roommate, and for them to get to know you.  Have fun in college, I hope you make friends that you will always treasure.

Erika’s Answer


When moving in with someone new, in most instances, the relationship is not going to be perfect. There will almost always be something that bothers you about the way the other person lives, behaves, etc. However, it is important for you to figure out what you can deal with, and what you can not deal with. No matter what the situation is, it is important to always be open and honest with your roommate but to do it in a polite and respectful manner. I would sit down with your roommate and express your concerns. I would make sure to add in a few comments about what you like about living with them but make sure to express your concerns clearly so that there is no question regarding the issues. In having the conversation, I would also ask your roommate if there is anything that you can work on to make the living situation better for them. However, if after having the sit down conversation the situation gets worse and you find that you can not live with your roommate any longer, I would suggest requesting a new roommate or finding a friend who is also looking for a new roommate. If you decide to switch rooms/roommates, I would suggest spending some time with your new roommate upfront to get to know them. In doing so, I would suggest being as open and honest as possible, maybe even explaining what your issues were with your last roommate (and them doing the same with you) so that you are both aware of things that could potentially create an issue with living together. In either situation, keeping your feelings bottled up will only make you more frustrated; therefore, being open and honest is the best way to kick-off a new start with your roommate.

Nick’s Answer


The first thing you should do is talk to your roommate about honesty. the second thing i would do is make a honest attempt to get to know them because it goes both ways. You will have to learn some flexibility and acceptance of others. Its a two way street and most roommates work out in college. i would bet a lot of people tell you how strong of friends they become with their roommate.