Scarlet (Scar), Female, Junior, 20 Years Old, Lives Off Campus.
Length of Interview
Scar lives in a six bedroom, three bathroom house not too far from campus. She has a total of five roommates. Each girl has their own room and there are two girls per every bathroom. This is Scar’s second year off campus and she is glad that she is experiencing living with five girls. However, this early into the school year she already knows she would not want to live in a large house with multiple people again, she thinks she would be happier in a two bedroom apartment with one other girl.
Her freshman year she was in the dorms, and last year she lived with three girls. Two of the girls from her previous house moved with her to this new house with two of their friends. The sixth girl they originally planned on living with had a financial situation last minute where she could not make the down payment. Instead, the girls found a random roommate on craigslist. So far, it has worked out fairly well. Scar admits that the fifth roommate is not necessarily her favorite person in the house but she definitely does not mind being roommates with her.
Having five roommates Scar described her relationship with each roommate. With the first roommate Scar is very good friends and close with. The second roommate she has a strained relationship with but a personal one. The third roommate she described as a friend but not super close. The fourth roommate she said she was close, comfortable, and friendly with. And the fifth roommate from craigslist she simply said friends and roommate. Scar describes friends as people she would choose to hang out with even if she did not live with them.
In relation to drama in the house, Scar says there is one roommate that no matter what she does, or how she acts, for some reason Scar is never mad at her. The others, she has disagreements with their living habits, but understands those bad habits because she had siblings at her parents’ house. She went on to say that being in college you are forced in to this situation where whoever you live with you have to treat as siblings, and that means you get along sometimes and you argue/disagree sometimes. She thinks that she was closer with and enjoyed her roommates more when she did not live with them.
Scar labels living with five people hard to adjust to people’s living habits and hard to hold people accountable. Accountable in terms of cleaning up after themselves and relying on them to do their chore for the week (they have a chore chart in their house where every girl does one chore per week and they switch on Sunday’s). She also says in terms of accountability people are busy. Every girl in the house has a full course load academically and a job on top of that. Meaning, sometimes when people are around, they are not around for long.
One thing Scar has realized living with this many people is that it is inevitable for some people to care more about certain things than others. If you do not care it is hard to make yourself care. Scar focuses on what she likes and dislikes. But she realizes people probably dislike some of the things she likes, so her and her roommates are still trying to figure out a way to have a fair amount of give and take.
Scar said probably one night a week maximum are at least four of the roommates at home sitting around talking or catching up. School, work, and boyfriends affect how often they are able to spend time together. Scar said she likes when they boys are over and all of her roommates have boyfriends except one. Having them there does not mean they are all hidden in their rooms with their boyfriends, but the boys are present and active when everyone is talking and it makes for a more fun friendly environment when they are around.
In the summer when everyone only had work they would do a lot more things together. Scar misses that, but understands that not everyone, herself included, has that kind of time in the school year. However, around everyone’s busy schedules occasionally they do have a girls night that all six of them can attend where there’s no boyfriends and they are all just hanging out.
Scar said that when she comes home from school or work and no one is there she is disappointed because she likes to talk about her day and expects someone to be there to just talk to. She gets bored and sometimes scared being alone in a big house as well so she feels a sense of comfort when her roommates are there.
What does it mean to be close and to trust your roommates?
I asked Scar if she was close with her roommates and if she trusted her roommates, and what being close and trust meant to her.
What close means to Scar is being comfortable to tell something personal, ask a favor, by myself in the house around.
Trust to Scar when it comes to roommates means that she trusts her roommates financially to hold up their end of the rent and bills. And as friends she trusts them with the things that she would tell them. Not like secrets, but she trusts their opinions, that they have her well-being in mind, and they would tell her what she needs to hear rather than things she may want to hear. Scar extended the conversation herself by saying “It’s one thing to trust your roommates, but to trust your roommate’s friends is a different thing.” Scar does not know everybody’s friends so she has to trust that her roommates are not bringing sketchy people over that could potentially steal or damage the house.
“It sounds super fun to live with your best friends, and in ways it is really fun. But I don’t think it’s the most ideal case for everyone. I love my friends, and I loved them before I lived with them, but it does not necessarily make me love them more to live with them. You think that when you plan on living with someone you would be with or around them all the time, but you are equally busy and rarely see each other. Your dynamic changes from being friends choosing to be in each other’s company to friend’s that live together.”