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Did you prepare your kids to be good college roommates?

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Replies to: Did you prepare your kids to be good college roommates?

  • toomanyteenstoomanyteens 1033 replies63 threads Senior Member
    @ordinarylives no pants?? Yeah I am with your daughter on that one -- that is pretty drunk
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  • toomanyteenstoomanyteens 1033 replies63 threads Senior Member
    I agree with @Trixy34 - it is one thing to help the guy out here and there -- everybody has their moments and I get it that sometimes you don't know your limit, but making it a habit like that I too would be done.
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  • homerdoghomerdog 5243 replies99 threads Senior Member
    edited February 5
    Not to be that mom, but I know S19 will be a good roommate. He’s pretty much the nicest guy I know. I worry more about him being a pushover like @liska21’s D. He will be overly careful not to hurt anyone’s feelings and I’m sure he will take care of a roommate who is sick or drunk. He’s not a drinker. Doesn’t even drink soda like someone mentioned above too! Super healthy runner guy. The only thing I’ve mentuoned to him so far is to not be judgmental about other kids drinking. Lots (dare I say most) kids are going to drink. If he doesn’t want friends who partake every once in a while, he may end up friendless.

    He also has very high expectations of his friends. He’s been lucky in high school to have found like minds and boys who really have each other’s backs. It’s going to take time for him to forge relationships like these and he will need to be patient.
    edited February 5
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  • oldfortoldfort 22985 replies292 threads Senior Member
    edited February 5
    D2 had an apartment mate from hell when she lived off campus. The roommate thought it was reasonable to leave her snow boots in the kitchen sink (to be cleaned). She had a lot of packages delivered to the apartment, but would leave the boxes/trash in the apartment (expected D2 to take them out). She would use a whole role of toilet paper in one setting (D2 finally said she was not going to contribute to the toilet paper fund). She woke D2 up the night before D2's LSAT examin because she was having a hard time closing the living room blind.
    edited February 5
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  • TS0104TS0104 922 replies26 threads Member
    Hm @homerdog I may have said this in another thread but our sons sound very similar (except for the running LOL!) @liska21 thanks...being a pushover is something I should probably talk about with him, and also the taking care of drunk roommate issue. I could see a risk of my non drinking DS being a little judgy about drinking and he is also fortunate to have a group of like minded friends in HS, and will also likely have to work to find that kind of group in college.
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  • homerdoghomerdog 5243 replies99 threads Senior Member
    The last thing S19 needs is having to take care of wasted roommate. He won't even know what to do - when it seems bad enough to take him to a hospital or anything like that. He has zero experience. I will be livid if he ends up with someone he has to take care of. College is so expensive and I'm not interested in paying for that.
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  • MeddyMeddy 507 replies35 threads Member
    edited February 5
    @TiggerDad That should be worth college credit right there. Well done
    =D>
    edited February 5
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  • TiggerDadTiggerDad 1954 replies71 threads Senior Member
    @Meddy

    Thanks, college credit is always welcome! :)
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  • liska21liska21 662 replies10 threads Member
    edited February 5
    @toomanyteens sexiling = getting kicked out of your dorm room while your roommate has sex. sex + exile turned into a verb. D got kicked out a lot sometimes until really late (like 2-3am). Taking care of drunk roommate was also a low point. I really have no idea how D and her frosh roommate were matched---they were opposites in every possible way.

    As for S19, well I hope the roommate matching works out better for him. I think he'll be a good roommate as he's a considerate and kind person if not terribly tidy. I may ask D to help him fill out his roommate form. She being a college student has a more realistic idea of annoying roommate behaviors. I was clearly clueless and no help to her when she filled out her roommate form. There were no questions about sex but there was about TV for example. It never occurred to us that someone would bring a TV and watch it at college. Or gaming, like video-gaming. Didn't know that was a thing either. Didn't realize the importance of having some minor overlap in tastes in music and movies.
    edited February 5
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  • oldfortoldfort 22985 replies292 threads Senior Member
    I don't quite understand how a kid is kicked out of a room by a roommate. When D2 was approached by her roommate about her BF's visit, D2 told the roommate to get a hotel room with her BF or sleep in the sorority's guest room (in the basement).
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  • liska21liska21 662 replies10 threads Member
    @oldfort lol, well it seems your D is not a pushover. My D is also no longer (such) a pushover, but it took many nights of being sexiled to get to that better place. Later after she refused to be sexiled, roommate still sometimes snuck BF into room while D was sleeping. If D woke up, she'd usually chase him out but sometimes it was easier to just roll over and sleep through the sex on the other side of room.
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  • oldfortoldfort 22985 replies292 threads Senior Member
    If it doesn't kill you then it makes you stronger. :)
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  • homerdoghomerdog 5243 replies99 threads Senior Member
    I wonder if roommates shouldn’t discuss the overnight business early on. If they can’t agree then can’t the one who doesn’t want overnight guests go to the RA to figure it out?
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  • liska21liska21 662 replies10 threads Member
    Well I think it falls into the category of things you might not think to teach your kid on how to be a good roommate. How to respectfully have guests in your room. It's along the same lines as having parties (small or not so small) in your room, when your roommate is not part of the party. It's easy to become the obnoxious roommate when you're the ones having a friend or friends over.

    Or the roommate that spends every night in the dorm room, maybe with a friend (not necessarily bf or gf), can come to take over more than their fair share of the room. How do you teach giving other people space or being aware of cliques? It's not just about tidiness.
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  • MWolfMWolf 1711 replies11 threads Senior Member
    My kid has shared a room at the CTD three week camp, and so has some experience, though there is a difference between three weeks and a school year.

    I asked her if she'd like me to get her "The Naked Roommate", to which she responded "Books?! I don't need no stinkin' book!"

    Well, what she actually said was "I don't want to be THAT person, who learned how to live with a roommate from a book. I'll go in blind, like everybody else". I can't wait for the year to start, and listen to her complaining about her roommate, to which I will reply, in my most reasonable fatherly tones "it's not so bad, you could have been THAT person, aren't you glad that you're not?"...
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  • wis75wis75 14112 replies64 threads Senior Member
    edited February 6
    No. He would not listen if we tried. It worked, even the apartment- the others were just as bad as he was regarding messes.
    edited February 6
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  • twogirlstwogirls 7326 replies7 threads Senior Member
    edited February 6
    We did not do anything in particular other than remind them that they need to be considerate. We tried our best to raise them to be respectful of others, and we hoped this would follow them to school. My kids lucked out...they had great roommates who they are still friendly with.

    My daughter met her roommate on the FB group. They were able to talk for a few weeks before deciding to be roommates. Neither one drank so this eliminated the possibility of significant drinking related problems. D’s school has suites, and the suite was pretty quiet both years that she was on campus.

    As far as boyfriends, my D told me that her freshman year roommate occasionally had her out of town boyfriend stay over ( maybe 3-4 times all year), but the roommate told my D ahead of time not to leave...he would be sleeping on the floor. My D didn’t seem to mind and it was never a problem for her.

    I agree that these things need to be discussed ahead of time, and many schools have roommate contracts. I never really inquired about any of these details...I figured if there were any issues my D would figure them out or at least complain to me. I never heard any major complaints.

    For my daughter, the biggest issue was learning how to handle things that got on her nerves after awhile. It’s bound to happen, even if you love your roommate. Some things don’t seem like a big deal when you are “interviewing” potential roommates, so they get ignored. For example, my D is an early riser...even on the weekends. Her roommate slept until 12:00 or later on Saturday and Sunday. This made D crazy as she had to tiptoe around, could not turn on the light, etc. She learned to adapt and realized she had a great roommate, despite the differences in sleep habits. I guess she learned how to compromise with a roommate, which is something she really never had to do at home but is certainly an important skill to have in college...and life.

    edited February 6
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  • NEPatsGirlNEPatsGirl 2845 replies106 threads Senior Member
    We talked about it quite a bit as D grew up like an "only" with a brother 8 years older and out of the house before she turned 10. She could (and still occasionally) be self-centered and she is a slob (still). She can't cook, goes to bed too early for most her age (and gets up too early as well), and can be pretty stubborn at times. Even with those qualities, she was a better roommate than alot she met during her four years.

    Her first two roommates, who arrived two weeks earlier than she did freshman year, were unfriendly. She eventually moved out of that room to a single because it was such a bad experience. She then went to a double and has remained friends with that roommate to now, and for junior and senior years has shared an apartment with three others. There is some drama but not too bad, imho, a great learning experience.

    As for the slob part, turns out she really isn't when compared to others her age. She is disgusted by the filth in the kitchen and bathrooms in her apartment and is the one who does the cleaning. That's a proud moment lol.

    I find the whole "sexiling" thing rude. Worse than that, I think anyone who can have sex with another person in these small dorm rooms borders on slutty or worse. I was very clear with my D that if she had a roommate who tried to sexile her, she was to fight back. If they went so far as to be intimate in the room while she was there she should stand over the bed and stare at them until they felt more uncomfortable than she did. If that didn't work, she should call me. I was not paying $8K/year for her to have to put up with that crap.
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  • homerdoghomerdog 5243 replies99 threads Senior Member
    @twogirls what boyfriend is coming to visit three to four times a year?! What’s that all about? Wasn’t he in college somewhere as well? I never even consiseeed that possibility. I would tell S19 to just say absolutely not. Honestly, I don’t remember so many issues with overnight guests at all when my husband and I were in school. And the folks above who say theie kids are messy and they tried to get them to not be? Geez. Now I’m worried about the roommate situation when I wasn’t before. Who is raising these kids who aren’t respectful of their roommates?
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