I grew up with a sister and a brother. Occasionally growing up my sister and I have shared a bedroom. Sharing a bedroom with a sibling is nothing like sharing a bedroom with a roommate, because at the end of the day you are related to your sibling. Normally, you are not related to your roommate.
I have seen people come to college and room with a relative (cousin usually) and I have seen relatives in the same year who have steered clear of rooming with each other.
Now being an RA (Resident Assistant) and just living on campus there are many types of roommates at SUNY Cobleskill. There are the ones who have been best friends, the ones who went to high school together, the ones that meet over the Facebook page, the ones who moved in with each other once here at some point during the year, and the ones who were randomly assigned by the housing survey. All have their pros and cons, no one way is better than the other.
I was forewarned going to any college, rooming with your best friend is not always the best bet, and sometimes your best friends becomes your worst enemy that knows all of your secrets. Something to think about if that is an option; my best friend went to a different college.
My freshman year roommate and I picked each other over the freshman page. She posted a paragraph about herself, like ones you find on dating websites, and we had a lot in common it seemed so we started talking. After a while of talking we decided we could be really good roommates and decided to meet up a couple of times before moving in. Living with someone is much different then meeting up with them.
Something I wished we did and as an RA to freshman I recommend this all the time, is to set guidelines from day one. I know rules do not sound good, you are coming out of your parents house where there were rules, listed or unspoken, but once with a roommate you see how necessary they are. So these guidelines should just be like when your classes are in the morning, because you will most likely not have the same morning start time everyday, when you plan on going to bed at night, how you sleep, food, set up of room, how you clean things, and what noise you like and when, are just some examples of guidelines you should go over.
Roommates are built in friends, during orientation weekend. My roommate and I went to all of orientation weekend stuff together and it is great because you have to go but now you are not going alone, you have someone to go with. Just be warned this friendship may not last all year long.
Final thoughts on roommates is an other piece of advice that looking back I wish my roommate and I did. Once a problem starts, talk to each other. Do not go and tell everyone else about the problem, talk to your roommate. If you need advice, talk to your RA.
Remember, most of the time your roommate is a stranger you are now living with, as long as you feel safe and comfortable, you do not have to be best friends.2013-09-16
October 16, 2013