Ever since I can remember I have been sharing a bathroom. I grew up with one brother and two sisters. The four of us shared two bathrooms. So I consider myself to be pretty well acclimated with the idea of sharing confined spaces with others. However, when it’s with your siblings, you are basically free to say whatever you like to them without worrying about their feelings. It is not uncommon to hear;, “get your dirty clothes out of here”, “hurry up, you’re taking forever”, and “you’re so disgusting and annoying CLEAN!”
This whole phenomenon changes drastically when you come to college. Suddenly, you are with strangers, acquaintances, friends and the occasional RA, and the whole saying whatever you want thing goes out the window. You need to learn how to communicate politely, yet still get your point across. Let’s face it, if you talked to people at school the way you talk to your brother or sister at home, you will indefinitely be left with no friends and no one wants that. When I came to college I lived in an all girls dorm. We had a community bathroom for the entire floor. This, surprisingly, wasn’t too bad (considering we had a cleaning service every day). Yes, it took some time getting used to wearing unpleasant shower shoes, but it was something I could look past. My sophomore year, I also lived in a dorm with a community bathroom. However, the only difference between this bathroom and my freshman year bathroom was that there were boys on my floor. This lead to many awkward run-ins to and from the community showers in my towel wrap and unattractive wet hair. Finally, junior year came around and it was time to move off-campus. I was so excited to have my own space with three awesome girls. Plus, our new apartment had two bathrooms; this meant no shower shoes and no awkward run-ins with boys. What could go wrong, right?
Little did I know this bathroom sharing experience would be the hardest of all my college years. I do not consider myself a neat freak, but I do believe in cleaning. Apparently my roommate did not share this same mind set. It’s funny that when you live with someone and you never know his or her true bad habits...you inevitably learn to live with them.
Here are some of the things I learned the hard way junior year. There are many things that can go wrong with sharing a bathroom. For instance, you do the majority of your personal hygiene cleaning in the bathroom, so you’re brushing your teeth, washing your face, showering, etc. This can cause disaster to strike. Soap can get everywhere, even the most inconvenient places. If toothpaste drops in the sink, simply remember to wipe it up, because when you drop toothpaste in the sink day after day it tends to dry up and look disgusting. Also, when showering, if you clog the shower, take the initiative to fix it; do not wait for your roommate to do it. Emptying the trash will also make your roommates’ life a lot easier. The number one piece of advice I have to give is: talk to your roommates if they are doing or not doing any of these things because it will save both your sanity and your friendship in the long run.