How to Deal With Different Housemates in Student HallOctober 27, 2017

The most challenging part of being a BA English student wouldn't be the paper writing. It won't be Reading Week either. It should be your housemates, as they could end up as your worst nightmare. You would meet them in the student hall often. You'll encounter them in a party one or twice (at the least). You wouldn't know that they don't like you until you get to know them. The last one shouldn't scare you, as they can be there when you need guidance. Besides, a good cook would be a rarity these days.

It would be better to go with the flow (in this kind of situation), but you have no prior experience with dealing with different students from different backgrounds. There are several kinds of housemates, and you can be one of them.

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You'll be chummy with the procrastinator. This housemate could be your coursemate, whom you haven't met outside the lecture room. You'll be invited to a night that you won't forget, when he (or she) will attempt to finish a 2,000-word essay in a fortnight. (If this housemate comes from another department, then it might a be 3,000-word lab report.) You'll be amazed at the feat, but you'll think twice about imitating it. If you happen to follow a schedule, then it will be better to show your generous side. (Bringing snacks should break the ice between both of you.) If you haven't managed your coursework well, then you should have learned a few pointers. It would be wise not to apply it, as you may not be able to catch up the next time around. Any last-minute attempt (to beat the deadline) is a sign that you're not taking your studies seriously. Your parents won't like it.

You get along with the neat freak (or the messer). It's not hard to guess the personality of a neat freak. No need to read Freud's theory, as this housemate has high standard. You don't mind a crumpled shirt on the corner of your room, if not a bit of food matter on your table. Don't take it hard if this neat freak of your housemate would rant about it. On the other hand, a messer is oblivious to what others would think of the mess around the room. Talk to this housemate in a gentle manner, reminding him (or her) about the communal area. If you can't get past the rants (of the neat freak), then try to avoid that person. As for the messer, try to hide the things that he (or she) may use. This is related to the next type.

You can't say NO to the borrower. You don't want an awkward encounter with your housemates, so you try to avoid any confrontations. Unfortunately, you have lost a number of items in your room. It point to this housemate, who might have taken your things to the grave (read: under the bed). You can have a double of those necessary items, which might give you a headache. How about biting the bullet (and tell your housemates that there must be an end to this kind of arrangement). There's a possibility of having an enemy (in the student hall) the following week, but you can't lose sleep over it. After all, prices are going up.

You're looking at your silent housemates. There are two kinds of this housemate: the silent one and the attention seeker. The first is shy in nature, if not awkward in social gathering. A greeting will keep you in pleasant term. The second seems slippery, as you think this housemate has a nice disposition. It turns out that he (or she) loves to take photos (using the mobile phone) and post it on social media. Vanity is not uncommon among teenagers, and you can be guilty of it. Be observant. Be very observant.

You're envious of your chilled housemate. It's likely that this housemate would use his (or her) gap year, visiting several countries along the way. It could explain the laidback approach to the coursework. This housemate won't panic at the approaching deadline (to an assignment) or missing precious time on the reading list. There's a possibility that this housemate would have learned something from volunteering in a foreign land. You can seek advice. You can mind your (own) business as well.

What a sensible housemate should do

You're the sensible teenager, so your housemates could give you a case of culture shock. You'll live with them, so there's no need to be horrible (to them). Show them how friendly you are. (You can keep them company after a long night at the bar.) It's also hard to tell if you're better to them, as they may have habits that could help you handle the coursework.

These housemates may like to hear a line (or two) from one of the Bard's plays, but reading a page from your favorite classic might prompt them to put on their earphones (and listen to their favourite tunes). It's fine, as they can lend a sympathetic ear when you tell them about your struggles in essay writing (over cans of beer). Try to find the goodness in each one of them.

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