Part IV in our ‘Going To College’ series! If you live with roommates for any length of time, chances are that you’ll run into your fair share of bad ones. Horrible roomies come in all shapes and sizes but they all share the ability to make your life miserable. Here are some tips and tricks for dealing with the unruly roommate we like to call, The Princess. The Princess has been taken care of her entire life. She’s gotten everything she’s ever wanted and has never had to take responsibility for her own life. She requires maintenance and lots of it. Now that she’s your responsibility, what can you do in order to stay sane and keep the drama to a minimum?
1. Write down the rules.
The first thing you need to do with any roommate, especially one accustomed to getting her own way, is come up with the rules of the apartment together. Make sure you write the rules down so there isn’t any confusion later on. If you compose the rules together, you’re less likely to run into problems later on. Make sure you decide on things such as how often to clean the apartment, when the quiet hours are and how the bills and expenses will be handled. Making a chore sheet may seem juvenile, but it will come in handy when trying to work out the issues that arise if someone doesn’t do their share.
2. Separate out your things from hers.
With some roommates, sharing food and toiletries can be easy, but the Princess may feel like everything is hers. She may eat things and then not replace them, justifying that you bought them in the first place and so you should be the one to buy it again. This can be a huge drain on your financial resources, and in this type of situation, it may be a good idea to label your foods and agree not to take things from each other. Remember that this goes both ways; if you don’t want her taking from you, you need to make sure you don’t take from her either.
3. Say no.
The Princess is used to getting her way but that doesn’t mean that she should. Don’t be afraid to say no if her demands are unreasonable. It helps if you stay calm and unemotional when telling her no, but do remember that your reason for not wanting to drive her to work or let her throw a party on a Monday night can be as simple as, “I don’t want to.” If you let the Princess manipulate you, chances are, she’ll continue to do so for as long as the two of you live together.
4. Don’t let her get away with not doing her share.
Just as you shouldn’t feel bad telling the Princess, “No,” you also shouldn’t be afraid to remind her to fulfill her obligations. Even if you have a chore chart, she may not do her share without being reminded. It can help to plan a day where the two of you do your housework at the same time so that she doesn’t feel you’re asking her to do too much, but if she isn’t doing anything, it’s not fair for it all to fall onto your lap.
Had this experience and want to vent? Have advice for fellow sufferers? We’d love to hear from you – here or on our Facebook page!