Dear Sue

Dear Sue,

I’m really stressed about picking my room and roommate for next year. I was really great friends with my roommate last semester, but now it seems as if we can’t get along. They came back from break different and it stresses me out. How do I tell them I want to pick a new room situation next year when they assume we are staying together? I don’t want to lose them as a friend, but I need to have a better study environment.

-Internally Conflicted

Dear Internally Conflicted,

First off let me remind you, when one person “assumes” something is makes an ass out of you and them (me).  Picking a roommate and room selection is a big deal for most people, however I’d recommend not worrying about it until the selection process gets a little closer.

You can’t let yourself become too stressed to the point where your studies fall behind. As important as it is to be considerate of others and compromise when issues arise, if something your roommate is doing stresses you out then you have to initiate communication. Compromise on the issue and, if you can’t reach a compromise, then maybe it really is time to end rooming with them.

As for telling them, don’t beat around the bush. Sit down with your roommate and start the conversation off with a “Hey so I was thinking about next year…” Lay all your cards on the table and see if he/she feels the same. If you feel there’s something wrong, your roommate probably does too. When doing this, try not to blame them. Sometimes these things don’t work out and its best for everyone involved to find a solution and moving on.  Have a discussion with him/her about all your options, and their options, and then ultimately decide what’s best for your studies.  Don’t be afraid to talk and discuss.

Describe to your current roommate how you think it would be better for both of you to pursue a different situation. If you have trouble studying in your room your roommate probably does too. He/She might appreciate your straight forward attitude and respect your decision. I doubt talking about room situations will cause your friendship to end if you communicate your thoughts and concerns respectfully.

`Sue Z. Maroon