Having a tough time coping with your flatmates? Well, you’re not the only one! Before you quit uni, here's our advice on what you can do...

 

First of all, don’t panic

It’s perfectly normal to not get along with new people. Heck, most people find it hard enough to get along with family members, despite living day-in-day-out with them. Everyone has a different character and a way of perceiving the world, so it may just take some time before everyone is on the same page. Once the Freshers’ week hype has died down, you should get the chance to really get to know your flatmates and this tends to go one of two ways. It might only be a matter of time before you’re all seeing eye-to-eye. Try and organise a time for you to all hang out and do something fun together, such as going for dinner or drinks.

Group of drunk people

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Be open and avoid judgement

It’s extremely easy to judge others, so much so, we often do it subconsciously. When we judge someone, we put them (metaphorically) in a box and therefore limit our potential relationship with them. Put yourself in their shoes and try to see things from their perspective. When we’re open to and interact with new people, we stand to learn more about others, in addition to learning more about oneself. When avoiding judgement, remember to also avoid judging yourself. It’s OK to be shy around new people so don’t beat yourself up about it.

Little girl saying she loves herself

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COmmunicate

Communication is key, so think about the words you say and know that it’s okay to set limits. Of course, it’s important to be understanding, but if someone is doing something wrong or just plain annoying (like not washing up his/ her dishes) you should be upfront about the problem. Bottling up how you feel about various issues that get on your nerves is never a good thing. Honesty from both parties can resolve many issues and more often than not, your flatmates may not even be aware of how their actions affect you. It’s good to remember that it’s human nature to do things with good intentions, as rarely do people go out of their way to hurt others and cause conflict.

Lisa Kudrow keeping it real

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Agree to disagree

Conflicts and misunderstandings are bound to happen. When they do, it’s important to realise that you’re a young adult - not a rowdy teenager. It’s OK to agree to disagree with someone as long as the situation is handled in a mature manner and with respect. You don’t have to be best friends with each one of your flatmates. If you get frustrated easily, it’s good to know that acting on emotions generally results in actions/ words that you'll regret, so think things through before getting into a heated argument. It’s better to have mutual respect for one another instead of bitter feelings, especially seeing as you’re going to be living together for a whole year.  

Ryan Gosling saying 'agree to disagree'

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If nothing gets better, take action

It’s important to distinguish whether you’re being a drama queen, or whether your flatmates are really giving you a hard time. If it’s the latter, then you can do something about it. Contact the accommodation department for your university and request to change flats. Explain your situation and if appropriate, you should be moved. Depending on the severity of your situation, your previous flatmates may be spoken to or given a warning.

Don't forget to give your flatmates a chance, you never know what will come of it.

People having fun in a car

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