I don’t know if you’ve heard anyone say “don’t live with your best friend, it never ends well” but I know I have. During your 2nd, 3rd, and 4th year at Furman, you get to pick your roommates so of course I asked my best friend to be my roommate for sophomore year! I was never too worried about our living situation because we’re both easy-going people. I spent all my time in her room during freshman year, so it felt like we were basically already living together. In general though, the thought of ruining a friendship over something like your living situation is terrifying!
I got lucky with such an amazing best friend and roommate all in one, but I know some people might not be able to live as easily with their best friends. I wouldn’t change a single thing about my living situation this year and I honestly couldn’t ask for a better roommate!! With that being said, it’s not that simple in every situation, so here is what my advice would be to create the best environment for both of you.
1. Find ways to enjoy some alone time
I spend basically every second of my day with my roommate, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. If we aren’t in class, we’re either in the room together, eating a meal together, or hanging out in the same group of friends. Obviously not every set of best friends is like this, but in general, you will be spending A LOT of time with this person! It’s really important to find a time by yourself to decompress. Whether it’s finding a time where you have the room to yourself, going on a long drive, or just taking a walk, it’s so helpful to relax and enjoy alone time at least occasionally.
2. Talk about any issues you have
My roommate and I haven’t had any issues yet, but there are still times when we might talk about who takes the trash out or who is going to vacuum. We decided though that if anything were to happen that bothers the other person, we would just bring it up in an honest conversation. You can’t forget that this person is your friend, so being honest is always going to be helpful. They want you to be happy and you want the same for them, so discussing issues in a mature way will only benefit the two of you.
3. Be willing to compromise and be considerate
My best friend is one of the most considerate people I know, and we’ve never had a struggle with compromises. You do need to be ready though to adjust so that both of you can live well. Luckily my roommate and I usually go to sleep and wake up around the same time, but if not then be considerate of their daily routine. Make sure you’re both quiet while the other is asleep and simple things along those lines. It really isn’t too difficult – think about how you would like them to act if the situation were reversed.
4. Get ready to know everything about this person
You think you know if your best friend snores? Watches the TV really loud? Sets 15 alarms to get out of bed? Well, you will now. We all have our weird quirks, but that’s also sometimes the things we love most about the people closest to us. You always learn so much more about your roommate than you would about anyone else. You’re living in such a confined space together for an entire year, so you’re bound to see them at their worst, at their best, and really everything in between. Sometimes this will only deepen your relationship, but just be prepared to see it all!
5. It may not work out and that’s ok!
Sometimes you just know that you and your best friend wouldn’t live well together. Other times, it takes actually experiencing it to know that. Either way, if the living situation doesn’t work out, that doesn’t mean anything negative about your friendship. Plenty of people are the best of friends, but they also know that they would never be able to be roommates. Use your best judgement because every situation is different.
I really found the absolute best roommate and best friend all in one, but I know it doesn’t always work out like that. It can be really hard living with someone you’re so close with, but the key is always communication. Neither of you want to upset the other, so as long as you go about everything in a mature, respectful way, things will work out for the best. Big shout out to my roommate – if you’re reading this, I love you and you’re the best!
Everyone deserves a best friend and roommate all in one, but also know that everyone is different. It’s ok if you and your best friend wouldn’t live well together. It’s also ok to have struggles every now and then. Overall I really don’t think it’s as scary as people make it out to be as long as you communicate. I hope everyone gets the chance to live with their best friend because it has honestly made my year the best thing ever!
All the love!