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What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 6:49 pm
by Jackson.MacKenzie
Hey everyone!

Alright so I moved into college several weeks ago and I love it! It's been a lot of fun and I've met a lot of great people. Unfortunately, my roommate is not one of them. He is from Columbia and does not speak English very well, but he can have a perfectly fine conversation, just not with very advanced language. He's a very friendly person, but I have realized that I simply cannot deal with living with him anymore.

When we first signed up for housing/roommates, we were asked to fill out the following simple questions (my answers are included):
Smoking or non: Non
Morning or Night person: morning
Partying or non: non

I also requested the schools "substance-free" housing, which is one side of one floor in the building (it's very small!). Now let me begin with the stories of my roommate.

The first few nights, he didn't come back earlier than 6AM. He was drunk/hungover, and loud. He talks on his phone SO loud, he doesn't get that the people on the other end can hear him just fine with his regular talking voice. He plays his music louder than actually comfortable to listen to. It's this messed up Latin techno music and I can (no exaggeration), hear it from a block away. The whole dorm has complained about it to ME! Two days ago, he locked me out of the room (physical door lock, so my key card wouldn't open it), because he was having sex with a girl in our room. When I knocked loudly, he didn't open the door or even respond. He smoked cigars and pipes frequently, he parties all the time. Last night, he brought a friend back to the room at 3:30AM and the kid slept over. They were laughing and talking for 30 mins straight, this was all while I was trying to sleep. He picks up his phone in the middle of the night no matter what time it is because he always leaves his phone on high volume. He always asks to borrow my stuff like quarters for laundry, hangers, detergent, paper, fabric softener. He takes up more than half of the already TINY room.

I understand that partying and drinking is a big part of the college life, but someone who REQUESTS substance free wellness should not be behaving like this. It's unfair to me and others on the floor. The problem is, he just tries to be so friendly and buddy buddy with me when it's so obvious what he's doing is unacceptable. This is why I feel bad confronting him; not to mention, I am just a huge pushover and it's hard for me to speak up when something bothers me. But it's been taking away my sleep, my energy, my work, and my happiness.

I am seriously considering sending an email to the RA telling him how much this is bothering me; I don't want him in trouble for getting drunk or whatever, I just want him to find a new home. I absolutely do not want to move out while he keeps the room because I have followed the "wellness" rules and everything. I should not be the one to have to go. But I know it will be SO awkward with him if I talk to the RA because then he will know it was me and he will no doubt be confused because he thinks we're friendly with each other. I know it's easy enough to suggest that I just talk to him, but I can't. I've tried and he kind of just looks at me and nods and then keeps doing it. I have been so fakely nice to him and I can't deal with it anymore... I have subtly hinted that some of the other dorms are wayy bigger and they have vacancies available and stuff but he always just says "yes, thats cool. i love the view from our window."

I want Freshman year to be fun, and it has been - but I feel like he has completely invaded my personal space and I don't want him in trouble, I just don't want to live with him anymore. Does anyone have any advice?

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 7:06 pm
by A_Jelly_Doughnut
Just bring up the cigars & the rude behavior to your RA as a start...they will move one of you. I'd be relieved to be away from him, even if that did mean moving to a new building/floor/whatever.

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 7:58 pm
by god0fgod
I wouldn't care if he get's in trouble or not.

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:12 pm
by laisvai
:lol: Take it easy
he looks like totally oposite to you, but such people may become very good friends sometime...

btw you will have something to remember sometime... :)

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:17 pm
by Jim_UK
I think what is relevant here is that Jackson.MacKenzie had filled in the accommodation form with certain specifications one of which was non smoking.
Presumably the other party had made the same selection but with no intention of abiding by those rules.

I would go ahead and report this to the accommodation officer and ask that either he be moved or you are. As he is the smoker in the non smoking rooms then they have no option but to move him.


Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:24 pm
by drathbun
I am mostly amused by the fact that the original poster joined nearly a year ago, and has a post count of zero, and then this. What have you been doing all this time? :lol:

I have been on both sides of this story. I'm not a drinker / smoker, but I am (or was) a frequent late-night person. I had a roommate that was an early bird. We eventually worked it out. Had another roommate that often borrowed stamps, which was fine because he did eventually put them back, or he at least left money to pay for them. However, I was (at one point have since lost interest) collecting stamps, and would often get corner blocks for my collection. I finally had to lay down the law when he broke up a corner block to pay a bill.

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:26 pm
by Techie-Micheal
Some colleges will even fine the person for breaking the agreement. I know of a college where if you request substance-free housing, you sign an agreement saying that if you live there, you will be free of smoking, alcohol, marijuana, and so on. If you break that agreement, you could be fined, kicked out, or even get in trouble with the law (of course, illegal drugs will get you in trouble with the law no matter where you live ...).

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:47 pm
by Jackson.MacKenzie
Thanks so much everyone -- I really appreciate all the responses! I think I'll give it till the end of the weekend and if he doesn't change, I'm going to just send out a quick email to my RA explaining why I don't think it's ok (especially, as you guys mentioned, because I am in the Wellness housing...) I'll let you all know how it ends up :) thanks again!

Oh, PS -- my old username on the board was DackOfDoom, then I switched all my accounts over to Jackson.MacKenzie on all my forums, but continued posting under DackOfDoom on this forum for some reason... hahaha

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Fri Sep 14, 2007 11:41 pm
by Heimidal
Your RA exists to facilitate problems like the one you're having. If other people on the floor also have a problem with him, I suggest you round up one or two of them and talk to your RA as a group. This will show that it's not just you - he simply doesn't fit into the lifestyle of others on the floor.

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Sat Sep 15, 2007 4:16 am
by Roberdin
Hmm, if that happened to me, I'd probably just get really irritated and punch him in the head or something. Assuming he was a lot smaller than I am. Else I would try to reverse the situation by locking him out past 3 AM or waking him up at 7:30 AM sharp with some loud classical music ('Surprise' perhaps?) to help you study. Alas, I suspect that this is not a reasonable way to resolve the situation. I suppose you've tried talking to him?

In my opinion, you need to make it evident that his "lifestyle" is irritating you before you involve third parties. While some would disagree, I would consider this common politeness. Tell him explicitly that you are considering talking to the "RA", whatever or whomever he is. If your room mate is foreign, he may not understand your references to bigger rooms, and it's not really fair to drop superiors in his lap without making it evident that you are upset. Furthermore, it may be that you two were assigned together simply because there were no more available rooms, in which case the RA can do little more than talk to him your behalf. It may be difficult for you to say this, but it is important that you air your grievances. Ask him to smoke elsewhere and point out that you requested "substance free accommodation" (sounds like it should be an elaborate metaphor of a house). If he's acting "buddy buddy", I suggest that you try to remind yourself how you felt when he locked you out of your room.

Of course, since you are sharing, you will have to compromise at some point. If he's drinking and partying, providing it isn't in your room, it can't be a a big issue: he's not there, and when he returns, in my experience, drunks sleep extremely well. Loud conversations on the phone: try ear plugs? Even just shout "Would you mind keeping it down? He can probably hear you without the telephone at that volume!" or something equally unamusing. I don't want to be discourteous or dismissive, because I know how annoying little things like that can be (particularly when you want to sleep), but you cannot expect to have a perfect room mate. In the day, maybe use the library if you need to study in silence? There are things you can demand, like access to your room at all times, or a reasonable night's sleep, but you cannot really expect your room mate to go to sleep the exact same time as you do.

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Sun Sep 16, 2007 4:06 am
by calebrw
As someone who had a bad experience in the dorms last year, I can only give the advise to work with the people in charge of Residence Life (as it is call at my College). You are paying good, hard earned money to go to college and learn. I'm not saying people shouldn't have fun (within legal and common sense limits), but when you you live in a Wellness program area (as your school calls it), you have more than a right to complain. If the RA does nothing or can't do anything. Keep going up the chain of command if you have to. The hall director, the director of residence life and even the Dean of Students if needed. They are their to serve you. Alert them to this issue at once. It's the best thing you can do. That way you can move on and have a positive experience your freshman year, which in my opinion is especially important.

In my case, I opted to live in a dry (alcohol free) dorm. I live with about 60 recovering alcoholics (and addicts: crack, cocaine, meth, etc.) and about 40 "regular" students. I have no problem with people drinking (within legal and common sense limits), but I don't choose to participate and I feel living with other people who don't (or no longer) drink is good thing for me. I applaud your stance on alcohol, every college should have a dry dorm for people of all ages to live. That way then can live in a community that shares at least one thing.

Just my two cents,

Re: What to do with the worst roommate ever...? Please help me

Posted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 3:15 pm
by rnjonjo
the best option is to have no roommates at all...if you could somehow get some extra cash and move out to a single bachelor pad, then that would be the ideal situation. No roommates or even dealing with all the crap that comes with it.