Growing up, I was the only girl, so naturally I got my own room. I did not think that sharing a room would ever be a problem for me. But like I said in my first blog post, college causes a lot of changes in your life and this change SUCKED!
It all started when I finally got my dorm room information in August, just after I had orientation. Albany was not my first choice but after having fun and meeting new people I was eager to start my college experience. This dorm room information was important. It would contain the names of 5 girls who could potentially be my best friends for the rest of my life. I opened the email and quickly scrolled past the names of the four girls who were not my roommates, and there it was. My roommates. ROOMMATES. I got a triple my freshman year, which means not only would the already small rooms for two people would be adjusted for three beds but it would also mean someone had to share the bunk bed. I did not want the disappointment of getting a triple to deter me from having the best experience at UAlbany. Once I looked at the other four names on the list, my suitemates, I clicked, like lightening, to get to Facebook and find these girls. I friended them and one by one, each accepted. As I was granted access to more information about each of them on Facebook I grew more and more excited to start the year. Everyone seemed great, one of my roommates even lived 25 minutes away from me!
My two roommates and I talked about a lot of stuff and seemed to agree on most of it. The normal rule for a triple suite is that the person who gets the top bunk gets their own closet, while the other two had to share. For guys this might not be such an issue but for me, and probably any other girl in a forced triple, this was a HUGE issue. I can barely fit all my clothes in the tiny closets at Albany to begin with, how was I supposed to split a closet if I got stuck with bottom bunk? What if I got top bunk and had to climb up there every day? That would suck, especially since the schools lofted or bunked beds do not have a ladder on the side. For me climbing to the top would be a work out. I so desperately wanted the single bed, but we agreed who ever got there first would choose first. So naturally I left my house for move in day at 7am.
Unfortunately, one of my roommates got there before me so I was stuck on bottom bunk. I would rather share a closet then have to climb to the top bunk every night. Things in our triple went smooth for some time before things went haywire. But that is normal, not everyone will always like each other. To solve our roommate issues we tried a lot of things.
Steps to Navigating RoomHate:
The first step to solving any problem between people is talking. You need to communicate to someone what is bothering you. If you have an 8:45am on Fridays, it is okay to tell your roommates to keep it down after a certain time so you could sleep; or if someone does not clean up after themselves in the common room it is okay to mention it. If there is a bigger issue you could have an extended sit down talk, most people won’t know its bothering you unless you say something.
2) Ask Your Residential Assistant (RA) for help.
For me, after my roommates and I sat down and talked, our problems continued. Thankfully we had an amazing RA that we felt comfortable going to with our problem. We all talked to the RA separately about what was bothering us and what we wanted to change. Once she spoke with us separately she brought us together for a group discussion. Our discussion went very well, not many students realize this but an RA could be a great mediator for issues. RA’s are there to help you adjust to the college life style and answer any questions you have. However, even though our RA discussion went well the problems STILL continued to happen.
3) Speak to the Residential Director (RD).
It became clear to all of us that the whole triple situation was not working out. But since we already signed the form stating we would like to stay in our forced triple we had to talk to our RD. If your room becomes an unlivable condition you can schedule a meeting with your RD and tell them what your problems are. Once again all of us were spoken to, even all of our suitemates. After we all spoke to the RD she made the choice that she thought was best. One girl was removed from my triple.
The majority of the time your dorm room and roommate issues can be solved with a simple conversation. Being loud and messy is never that hard to change. But if things keep escalating there are a lot of people around you willing to help. The RA and the RD want your living experience to be a good one, so don’t hesitate to seek outside help. Yes we are considered adults now and are on our own, but everyone could use an unbiased opinion or suggestion every now and again.
About the Author:
Kate E. Class of 2018 Major: Communication Minor: Journalism and Philosophy Spring 2016 Blog Theme: Metamorphosis
Please Note: The views of our student bloggers do not necessarily reflect the views of the UAlbany Advisement Services Center. These are their stories – their voices.