Flatmates Are Like Marmite – You Either Love Them or Hate Them


It is safe to say that flatmates can be very hit and miss, there is always that possibility that you will either love or hate them. In some circumstances, the people you live with can become your best friends. It is often a bond that comes naturally as a result of living together; after all they are the people that will see you at your very worst and at your very best. However, sometimes people are put together and friendships are just not meant to be; you may find that you have nothing in common with your flat mates.

Here are a few things you can do if the people you live with aren’t quite what you imagined:

  • Join a new society.
Image Credit: 'Pixabay'
Image Credit: ‘Pixabay’

There are over 300 different societies at the university, from sports to musical theatre, catering to every person’s interest. It may seem daunting to turn up to something alone, but there will be a whole heap of other students doing exactly the same thing. You’re extremely likely to meet people who share similar interests to you and a couple of weeks down the line, a few socials later, you’ll be surprised at how many new friendships are formed.

  • Knock on the door of the flats around you.

Try taking a visit to the flat above or next to you, you don’t know who’s in there until you go and introduce yourself! Just because you don’t get on with your flat, doesn’t mean you won’t be great friends with people in the flats above or below you! Freshers week is the perfect opportunity to meet a whole load of new people, but even after the initial weeks of freshers, the whole of first year is all about meeting as many people as possible.

  • Start up a conversation with the person sitting next to you in a seminar.
Image Credit: 'Wikimedia'
Image Credit: ‘Wikimedia’

It can feel overwhelming sitting in a room surrounded by complete strangers and the last thing you want to do is to strike up a conversation with the random person sitting next to you. Really though, what have you got to lose? I made one of my best friends in a seminar in my first semester, and we’ve been practically inseparable ever since!

If you are really struggling living with your flat mates and in halls, then you don’t need to feel alone. There are is a whole host of support services offered by the Union, ranging from the Advice Centre, Nightline, and even residence support. They can help you with all sorts of problems ranging from homesickness, loneliness, anxiety, stress and any other problems that may arise. Often problems can be solved without requiring additional services, but if a situation arises that you feel is beyond your control, don’t be afraid to reach out and get the support you need.

I can speak from personal experience that the above advice does indeed work, and although I never needed to use the services offered by the university, I made friends completely outside of my flat. My experiences in halls were interesting to say the least. My flat mates created a white supremacy society  (all in the name of ‘banter’), often locked themselves in my room, ate my birthday cake whilst I was on a night out and often I would find stuff from my cupboards and fridge missing or contaminated. To put it lightly, as a flat we did not get on. (NB. not all of the people I lived with were involved with this, just a select few, and I got on with the rest of them pretty well.)

Despite all of this, I ended my first year with a great group of friends; we’ve stayed friends throughout second year, and about to enter our third and final year of university. It just proves that it’s not the end of the world if you really don’t get on with your flat, and also it isn’t as uncommon as you think.

Image Credit: 'Flikr'
Image Credit: ‘Flikr’

Try and step outside of your flat, join a new society, speak to the other flats around yours, go and meet new people and it will save yourself a lo http://gty.im/1132315 http://gty.im/1132315 t of hassle for the rest of the year. There are thousands of other students at the university, just remember that your friendship group is not limited to the few people that you happen to share a kitchen and/or bathroom with.


Third Year English student and Lifestyle Editor 2016/17.

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