The Realities of Living in a College Dorm

Going off to college means having to live in a college dorm. Although living in a dorm isn’t ideal, it is inevitable to most college students experience. It is a big adjustment and allows you to learn a lot. With living in a dorm comes lots of changes, both good and bad. This includes sharing a space, communal showers, meeting new people, and learning to take care of yourself.

Sharing Spaces

One of the hardest, yet most fun parts of living in the dorms is sharing a space. This is a huge adjustment, especially for those who have never shared a room before. It teaches you a lot, like learning to clean up after yourself and how to be mindful of the other person as well. You’d be surprised but this can be a lot harder than it seems!

Living with another person forces you to pick up after yourself and keep your area clean. This is a great habit to maintain now because it will be useful for the rest of your life. It is important to do so because it can be frustrating when there is a constant mess. Especially when it’s shared or the other person’s area. Having a clean space can also be beneficial not only to your roommate, but yourself. According to an article by Octoclean, productivity will be higher when you have less clutter around. If you have a constant mess around, it can get extremely difficult to stay on task and get anything done. There is not much time for procrastination when being a college student. Maintaining the cleanliness of your space will not only be beneficial to you, but your roommate as well.

The Plus Side

Sharing a space with someone can also be so much fun! It means having someone to always talk to, to get food with, and walk to class with. Going to college can be very scary as it is, especially when you know no one, so having someone by your side makes the adjustment a lot easier. You never become bored and always have something to do. There are endless laughs, and you find your forever best friend through being together every day!

Although sharing a space can be fun, it can also be very hard. We all have bad days and, on those days, especially, we just want to be alone and not talk to anyone at all. Sometimes this can be hard to deal with when sharing a room with someone because we all deal with our emotions in different ways and sometimes lash out. It is very hard to get privacy in the dorms, if any at all.

Communal Showers

Communal showers. The worst part of living in a college dorm. At most, there are three for the entire floor so options are limited and the showers are super tiny with little to no privacy. It is quite uncomfortable having to walk all the way down the hall in a robe with all your shower supplies in hand and then also having to do that on the way back to your room as well. It is very likely that you will run into someone one way or another and it is just very uncomfortable and violating.

The showers also aren’t the cleanest and everyone uses them, so it is very important to take precautions, such as shower shoes. In LovetoKnow’s article, Frazier states, “Wear slip on, waterproof shoes. Crocs are great for this as are flip flops. Unfortunately, communal showers may also mean communal foot fungus, so protect your feet.” . Communal showers aren’t ideal but after a while you start to get used to them and they aren’t as freaky to use.

New Friends

Another benefit of living in the dorms is making new friends. Most of the time, the people you meet in your hall, are the people you get close with. You see them almost every day and have similar situations going on. It is easy to go hangout and to just knock on their door when you need something or someone to talk to. According to an article by TheDailyIowan, 79% of college graduates found their closest friends in college. It is important to put yourself out there, and the dorms give you that opportunity every day to make those lifelong friends!

Learning to take care of yourself in the dorms is one of the most difficult parts of adjusting to college, especially if you have never really done it before. Most college students are used to their parents doing their laundry and taking care of them while they are sick. At school, it is a different ballgame because you are all on your own. You must start getting into a routine of doing laundry and putting it away because then a never-ending pile starts growing in your laundry hamper. It can also be hard getting sick at school, especially in the dorms because you are cooped up in a small room with another person. It is important to stay on top of taking vitamins and medicine to get better.

Living in a college dorm is overall, a learning experience. It teaches students important life skills; they never knew they needed and allows them to grow as a person and have a sense of some individuality. It is a fun, but also at times, not ideal experience, that every college student should go through!