10 Commandments Roommate Bulletin Board

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How to Avoid, Handle, and Solve Conf lictBy Shawna Strickland and Jordan Weimar

y Communication is the basis for

any relationship. y Keep it positive by talking to your roomie before things get unbearable. You ll be surprised how much better it will go! y If you feel like you need help starting the conversation, see your RA. y Don t forget to talk anything and everything, not just when there might be a problem. Roomies are friends, too!

y Realize that you re both sharing a very small space. y If your roomie comes to you about something, try to

see it from their point of view as well. y COMPROMISE is necessary from both sides. You ll need to give some thought to what you can improve, too. y Try to give all situations a win-win outcome. y Remember, you re in this together!

y Remember those contracts you wrote at the

beginning of the year? Take a moment to revisit those or create a new one. y Respect your roomie s boundaries, both within the room and in lifestyle. y You ll both make new friends, and remember to respect your roomie s new pals, too.

y If you re an early bird, considering leaving a

small light on at night and being understanding of a late sleeper in the morning. y If you re a night owl, come back when you re ready to settle in for the night. Avoid bringing fellow night owls over after roomie s bedtime. y For both, try to avoid hitting Snooze too often. y Remember to turn your alarm off on the weekends, too.

y No one likes a faker. After all, who likes Paris Hilton? y Be yourself no matter what. It will make addressing the

issues easier in the end. y Learn to appreciate the differences in your personalities. Opposites attract, right?

y Every roomie has some awesome stuff, but remember

to ask before touching. y It s important to actually abide by equitable division of goodies if you re splitting the expense. y Before wearing your roomie s favorite shirt to a hot and sweaty club, think how you d feel if you didn t get it back for weeks.

y Okay, so we re not talking abstinence, just boundaries. y If roomie is present, tone down the PDA. y Avoid sexiling your roommate. No one likes to be in

the lobby alone at two in the morning. y Define what is ok in terms of overnight visitors, and respect those terms. y Split up the fun between your room and your significant other s place, too. y Practice safe sex, but dispose of the evidence.

y Devise a plan to switch trash duties, then stick to it. y Don t let one person get stuck with the dirty deed,

whether it s taking out the trash and recycling or vacuuming the room, etc. y If you need to clear space in the bathroom for the custodian, remember to take care of your own stuff.

y When a room smells more like a dumpster than a

living area, it s a bad sign. y Try to avoid dirty clothes everywhere. Nothing is less exciting than stepping on dirty underwear. y If you want to be messy, try to keep it on your side of the room.

y Do unto others as they want done unto them. y Know that everyone does things differently, from

handling conflict to eating their cereal. y Respecting these differences and treating your roomie as they want to be treated will set you both up for a positive experience.

y Thank you for using this bulletin board! Jordan and I both

hope that you will find it helpful and useful on your floor. Please let us know if you do post the board; it s always nice to hear about its success! y Shawna: slstrick@holly.colostate.edu y Jordan and I are both second year RAs in Parmelee Hall at Colorado State University in Fort Collins. (Fall 2008)

At RA training, summer 2008. 80s workout theme day!