It has been almost three years since I first moved in with my boyfriend, it hasn’t all been easy but we make it work. These tips do not have to be applied to living with a significant other but can also be helpful for any roommate. My boyfriend and I are polar opposites, so if you need advice on how to deal with someone that just on a different planet from you, keep reading.

Accept Your Differences

This is the hardest part of living with someone, realizing they are different from you and have different solutions to a problem. No two people have the same thought process, so there must be a mutual respect and acceptance of the dissimilarities. The drain is clogged, you want to by some Drano instead of bothering the landlord at midnight, your roommate wants to call the landlord immediately. How do you successfully handle this situation without leading to an argument?

Problem Solving

In the situation I mentioned above you want to buy Drano to try to fix the clogged drain and your roommate does not. Calmly sit down and discuss all possible solutions and choose the best options, simply explain why you feel the way that you do without dismissing the others concerns. Try to bargain, “Let’s try some Drano to get us through the night, if it’s still clogged in the morning we can call the landlord.” In a disagreement, not everyone can come out victorious, but coming together to solve a problem can be a pretty sweet victory.

Chores

Ahh, the dreaded chores. The argument about who’s sock is left in the middle of the floor and who’s turn it is to do the dishes. Or if you meet someone like my boyfriend who miraculously “can’t see” the mess or “doesn’t know” what needs to be done, I can help. Create a chore chart, yes just like your mom made for you in elementary school. Leave personal spaces out of the chart, take into consideration all shared rooms: living room, kitchen, bathroom, hallways, etc. Make a list of daily and weekly chores and alternate responsibilities: Sunday I pick up the living room, Monday you pick up the living room. First week I clean the bathroom, second week you clean the bathroom. In addition, create a laundry schedule, each person has a designated day to do their laundry: Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday are my days; Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are your days.

Sharing a Bathroom

Only having one bathroom is a pretty big inconvenience especially for women who are notorious for taking hours to get ready. My advice to this problem is to create a schedule, determine who is showering at night and who is showering in the morning or who is getting up earlier so you can both get your showers in. Set a routine so there is no disputing whos turn it is. Another tip to limit bathroom time is to set up a hair/makeup station in your personal rooms, that way you aren’t hogging up the bathroom for an unnecessary amount of time.

Groceries and Cooking

Now there are multiple ways to do this, you could keep it all separate: divide the refrigerator right down the middle and you each spend your own money on groceries and cook separately. Or you could split the cost of groceries and share the responsibility of cooking. Either alternate cooking nights or cook together every evening, the choice is yours. What happens if you’re the only one who knows how to cook? It’s time to strike a deal, say you’ll do all the cooking if they agree to do the clean up, seems like a fair bargain to me!

Thanks for reading, guys! I hope you enjoyed this post, don’t forget to like it and follow before you leave. Look out for new content every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday! 

– Mackenzie

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