Elias Pelcastre

Misconceptions of living with friends

Going off to college is typically the time when we first leave our parents’ nest. We learn to be independent. No parents or authoritative figure to tell us what to eat, what time to be home, when to clean, whom we can bring over, amongst many other things.

We learn to appreciate the little things in life. We also learn a great deal of lessons we would not be able to learn under our parents’ roof.

One of the biggest lessons we learn is what it is like to live with roommates. This can be a blessing and/or a curse.

Some people find their best friends through living with people they don’t know. On the flip side, some people make their worst enemies this way.

There are a lot of misconceptions about living with ‘friends’ that people learn the hard way.

“Oh my gosh, we are going to be best friends forever!”

“We’re going to have an awesome house and have friends over all the time!”

“We can do everything together!”

Oh, my. You will learn, young grasshopper. Living with people can be such a frustrating fact of life.

No two people live exactly the same lifestyle. People have different standards of hygiene, different hobbies, different bed times, different eating habits, different music appreciations, and the list goes on.

By living with people, you have to adjust your own schedule and lifestyle to permit civil cohabitation in a single space. If you move in with people you already know, it could slowly tear at the friendship when you find out what they are really like. You never really know someone until you live with them.

Sometimes, two people may think they are friends until they have to live under the same roof. A lot of people think that someone is their friend but that friendship fails when they find out the person they thought was their “BFF” is the total opposite as a roommate.

On the other side of the spectrum, it may turn out you have even more in common with your friend than you thought when your lifestyle habits match up.

Living with others has its ups and downs. You are always surrounded with people. You can go to them for advice. If you run out of something, you can ask to borrow theirs. You get introduced to new ideas, music, food, and friends.

You can have wine nights, have someone to accompany you to parties, go cry in each others rooms, play one-on-one beer pong, spend hours on end binge-watching that zombie motorcycle gang meth lab series, cook together, trash talk your enemies together… you can pretty much do everything together.

Of course, this is if everything ices over smoothly. If you don’t get along with your roommate(s), you can find yourself living in a very uncomfortable and hostile situation.

The first time I moved out of my parents’ house, I lived with three girls and only got along with one of them (and thank goodness she was the one that shared my room with me instead of the other two). Our apartment quickly turned into a negative space. I hated coming home at the end of the day because I felt a weight of malicious energy overcome me every time I unlocked the door and entered the apartment. I would find myself spending all my time in my room and wouldn’t come out to socialize with the other two girls because we had this mutual understanding that we just had completely different personality types and did not see eye-to-eye on anything.

Granted, I did grow very close to the roommate I shared a room with; so there was an upside.

A noticeable trend does come up, however. Most people who now live on their own wouldn’t go back to living with roommates, whether they previously enjoyed living with people or hated it.

Living with people gets old after a while. You don’t want to always wake up to someone else’s alarm. You want to use the bathroom at your leisure and not have to wait for someone to finish up his or her business. The same goes for using the kitchen or the washer and dryer.

Not only this, but there comes a time when you can only handle people in doses. As we grow older, we learn to appreciate time to ourselves.

In my own experience, living with people is fun at times, but there are days where I just need silence and want to spend quality time alone.

By living alone, you can keep all the same friends you made when you lived with them AND get the bathroom to yourself! It’s a win-win!

Sure, you won’t have people around all the time, but at least you avoid the possibility of living with someone you can’t stand.

Of course, many people live with others for financial reasons, especially college students. But for those who could be financially independent and afford a place of their own, it’s nice to be able to have that opportunity.

Living with other people is a part of life that everyone should experience.

It’s a part of growing up and makes you realize things about yourself you wouldn’t have discovered otherwise.