6 Tips to Help You Deal With Being Excluded by Roommates
No roommate’s living situation is perfect. Unfortunately, there are occasions where you can experience roommate problems, whether it be over privacy, splitting bills, or even feeling excluded by them. When you are living with multiple roommates, it can be easy to feel quickly detached and isolated from them, which can lead to more problems.
If you are in a roommate situation where you’re excluded by one or more roommates, here are six simple ways to try and fix the problem.
1. Think It Through First: Just about everyone is guilty of overthinking at some point in their lives. Overthinking can turn even the most level-headed people upside down, so before you make assumptions about your roommate’s behavior and go straight to believing that they are excluding you, try to logically piece together what would make sense based on your relationship with them, your work/school schedule, what has been going on in their personal life (as well as yours), etc. For example, your roommates may work together and be extra busy on certain days of the week, or perhaps you’ve been bogged down with heavy school work which makes you have to be more focused and isolated. Regardless of the situation, evaluate the outside factors that may make you feel disconnected first before you have a sit-down talk.
2. Try to Talk It Out: Communication is a pivotal aspect of making any relationship work, whether it be a romantic, platonic, or roommate one. If you have thought things over and are still feeling excluded, ask your roommate(s) if they have some time to sit and talk with you for a minute, perhaps over dinner or during the weekend when everyone is home. Convey to them everything you’ve been feeling and express to them all the ways that you want to be more included with them. If you have a solid relationship with your roommates, this should be a smooth and easygoing conversation that ends on a positive note. If you have yet to get close to your roommates, this could be a bit more uncomfortable or difficult to handle- be patient and do your best with their reactions.
3. Lean on People Close to You: Sometimes, no matter what you say or do, you still can feel excluded and isolated by your roommates. In this case, try to lean on people close to you, like your friends, parents, co-workers, etc. Schedule a date to Facetime your best friend, give your mom or dad a call, take a walk with some coffee with a classmate, or grab a bite to eat with a coworker. These very real connections can help you feel more connected to those around you and less like an outsider. Remember, if you’re not open with your friends and family, they won’t know that you’re feeling down.
4. Distract Yourself With Your Favorite Hobbies: If you have free time and are excluded by your roommates, one thing that you can do is distract yourself by doing some of your favorite hobbies. This isn’t a total replacement for having friends and close relationships, but taking part in little things that make you feel good. Cuddle up with your favorite blankets and pillows and watch a favorite Youtuber, Netflix show, or movie. Have a self-care day (or night) and get a warm bath/shower, and take time to do your hair and even your nails. Make your favorite meal that reminds you of home and talk with your friends or family to make you feel loved.
5. Offer to Invite Yourself: Sometimes exclusion can happen by accident and without the other parties realizing it. Perhaps in the past, you’ve repeatedly rejected offers to go out, or maybe they’re doing an activity they think you wouldn’t like, in either scenario, it can be hard on your roommate’s end to gauge if it’s appropriate to invite you out or not. In this case, try “inviting yourself” and see where that conversation can go. Ask them if you can tag along when they go out, or better yet make your own plans and invite them to join you.
6. Take a Break From Social Media: In today’s world, it is almost impossible to not see what everyone is doing, which can definitely make you feel lonely and excluded. Taking a break from social media can give your mind and heart a rest from the pressures that social media exudes, and help your mental health overall. When you’re ready to get back on, do so- but don’t forget you can get back off at any time.
Confronting your roommate(s) about feeling excluded takes courage and can feel uncomfortable, but if you are honest about your feelings and take time to care for yourself, dealing with the situation will be much more tolerable.
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