How To Handle A Fight With Your Roommate

There is really no way to avoid the roommate arguments that will inevitably crop up as you're living together in college, be it for just one semester, or a whole entire year. You are sharing the same small space, and you see each other at your best, your worst, and your most vulnerable. While figuring out how to stop fighting with your roommate may seem impossible, it can be done. You just need to tread carefully. Getting in a fight with anyone you are forced to see everyday can turn into an "all is forgiven, but I'll throw this in your face later" kind of situation, and that's about as unfair as it is a waste of everyone's time.

It's always easier to let your pet peeves and emotions get the best of you, and to hold that resentment in an eternally tense fist of fury, but how is that fun for anyone? Cliche as it sounds, it's important to at least try to be the bigger person, not because it's the right thing to do, but because your body and your brain don't need any additional stress. So hash out your issues with your roomie, and just let the drama go. All you need are the right communication tools, and a whole lotta patience. Here's how to survive an argument with your roommate, and come out the other side as friends.

1. Address the problem directly

It's easy to avoid the confrontation, and sidestep the person you are fighting with using passive aggressive comments and lack of eye contact. But real talk: that sucks the life out of you, and in the end, it's not very effective. To avoid more drama, sit your roommate down, and be honest about the problem that's cropped up between the two of you, and where you think it all started.

2. Listen to her

Once you've shared your side, it's her turn to talk. Don't interrupt her halfway through if you don't agree. Keep those lips zipped until she's done.

3. Ask questions

If there is any part of her side that you don't understand, or she is claiming things that you don't recall, ask questions. It will show that you heard her, and that you want to better understand how she feels.

4. Give her the benefit of the doubt

If you look at the issue between you as a miscommunication, and see her as another person trying to get through college while doing the best she can, then it's easier to move forward. Trust that she's not a monster intentionally trying to destroy you, because she's not.

5. Let it go

Once you've both let it all out, then forgive each other and move forward. No seriously, you actually need to do that. Don't just say all is forgiven, and use this last conflict as another tally against her later. Letting resentment build up will do nothing to help your relationship in the long-run, and a semester is a long time to stay mad.

6. Keep it positive

Sometimes, it's hard to go from angry and resentful to happy and calm. You might still be mad at your roommate after you've forgiven each other, but keep a smile stuck on your face until it becomes real. Positive vibes will come eventually, and you will be a much happier person after the effort.

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