Ashley and I met at 18, as we were moving in to our shared space the week before we began our freshman year of college. We were forced to get to know each other quickly as we were not only sharing a room, but also a closet, a set of drawers, and bathroom space. Luckily for us, we became fast friends and lived with each other all throughout college.
Along the way, we learned a few tricks to stay sane as roommates, and close as best friends — some came naturally, and some we learned the hard way!
1. Put in effort to schedule time to do things together outside of your room or apartment. I think this is singlehandedly the most important factor to maintaining a good relationship with anyone you live with. If your entire relationship revolves around reminding the other person to pay rent or clean up their mess, you will very quickly lose any fun aspect of your friendship.
2. Respect their space. This means to respect their physical space (don’t rearrange their workspace or leave dishes piled in the sink, obviously), but also to give each other alone time. In our case, we were sharing a single room, so this meant being comfortable having “alone time” in the same area. Or, if one of us needed the room to take a phone call or just escape from the madness that is college, we accommodated — knowing that the other would do the same. And along the same lines…
3. Don’t get caught up in the little things. It is so much easier on your relationship if you let the little things go, and refrain from picking fights over every little conflict. So maybe your best friend and roomie does rearrange your space or leave dishes piled in the sink every once and a while! As long as it’s not a consistant habit or seriously hurting your daily routine, it’s probably okay to just brush it off.
4. Keep communication open and honest. If something is bothering you, bring it up, talk it out, and move on. It’s a pretty amazing opportunity to get to live with your best friend, so spend more time dancing, gossiping, crafting, or whatever it was that brought you together initially, and less time stewing over something silly.
H & A
In the spirit of Thursday, this is Ashley and I the second year we lived together: