If only living with friends was like Friends, we'd all have it so much easier. I'd give my left leg to crash in Joeys shag pad but Monica's A-type overly obsessive ways? Not so much. Living with your friends sounds like a great idea in theory but put it into practise and you may begin to wonder why you're friends with them at all. From someone who's been there and just about come out alive, here's how to live with your friends and not hate one another;
1) Have Your Own Room
This might seem like I'm stating the obvious, but college equals a time where money is like an unassuming hot man. It's very rare to come by, so savings have to be made where they can and sadly, for many, this means having to share a room with a friend. Don't do it. Survive off noodles and borrowed money if needs be, your sanity need the space.
2) Keep Busy Outside Of The House
If you spend all day, every day lazing around the homestead like a stoned sloth then it's really only a matter of time before you start losing your mind. Go to class, meet your other friends, grab a book and read it in a coffee shop, go to the library. Get out of the house as much as you can and you'll actually look forward to coming home.
3) Don't Be A Dirty Slob
Just as there's always one loose friend in every friend group, there's always one dirty slob in every house share. Don't be that person. Don't forever tarnish your name with a dirty brush. Clean up after you cook. Open a window every now and then. Take out the rubbish. Grow up.
4) And Make Sure That They Aren't Either
Likewise, you shouldn't spend your time running around picking up people's teabags and Febreezing their shitty after smell. You are not a mother. Call them out. Take turns. Pool money together to buy bin bags and washing up liquid. Don't let their dirty habits annoy you, tell them, guilt them.
5) Plan House Activites From Time To Time
When you're living together, it can be hard to remember that you're friends underneath it all. Plan something fun as a house from time to time. Organise a house night out, cook together, go to the cinema. Just spend it having fun and not arguing over crumb mould and smelly boxers.
6) Socialise With People Other Than Them Occasionally
We all have a limit. A limit for dealing with arseholes in the mornings. A limit for listening to our parents nag us and more importantly, a limit of how much time we can spend around other human beings. Living with people can stretch your social skills to the absolute max at the best of times, when these people are your friends too, things get really tough. Mix with people outside of your house, it'll do you the world of good.
7) Don't Bitch About One Another, To One Another
Do not, I repeat, do not bitch about one housemate to the other. because it just won't end well. Things will get back, tension will follow, it won't be pretty. If you have been doing this already, stop. If you feel the need to do it anyway, then do it to someone extremely outside of your social circle. Your mother will do.
8) And If You're Planning On Bringing People Over, Let Them Know
A night out on the pull doesn't count. If they've got a problem with this, then perhaps suggest lending a helping hand in finding their balls. If though, it's a Tuesday and you're planning a blowout session in yours, let them know a few days in advance. It's for the best.
9) If Something's Up, Let Them Know
If you've got a problem, get it out in the open before it eats you up and drives you to boiling point. I'm one of those people who bottles it all up for months and then explodes with rage. Let them know if their shower habits are driving you to chewing your nails off in your sleep and find a solution that works for you all.
10) Buy A House Treat Every Now And Then
Want to be the favourite housemate? Buy a chocolate cake once a month. Share your Netflix movies with the whole house. Arrive home with a crate of beer. It won't go unnoticed or unappreciated.
11) Ask If You Can Borrow Their Shit
Nobody likes a scrounger, I assure you. If you use the milk, replace it. I really won't be a happy bunny if I wake up to milk-less cereal. The same goes for toilet roll, my fancy shampoo and teabags. Replace. As for wearing my slutty dress out tonight? Ask before you borrow. That's all you need to do.
12) Do A House Scrub Together Every Once In A Blue Moon
Sometimes, try as you might, house debris just build up and threatens to overpower you all. Get the whole house to band together, get the gloves out, the beach ready and clean that bastard. If you promise yourselves a reward at the end of it, you'll get through it all in no time. And yes, by rewards, I mean alcohol.