In the past six years, I have lived with at least 16 different roommates for at least a month or longer. I also lived alone in a tiny dorm room as a college residential assistant (RA) for a single semester back in 2006.
With the exception of two, I still have all of their phone numbers. But I probably won’t be calling many of them. Some of them became and still are my closest friends. A few of them I hatred living with and stopped communicating with them.
Looking back, I don’t regret a single living situation though. I mean there were definitely miserable times. But I learned something about myself by being in relation to each of them. And I got to connect with most of them in a deeper sense than you can with a lot of people. You know your family, close friends, and living companions better than anyone else.
These roommates include former or future jocks, nerds, chefs, musicians, scientists, nurses, lawyers, businessmen, and more. The sheer number is staggering to me. Most people in my age group never exceeded five roommates. Let’s look at the statistics:
- 2 Roommates I Lived with for 2 Years
- 6 Roommates I Lived with for 1 Year to 2 Years
- 8 Roommates I Lived with for 1 Month to 6 Months
- Only 2/16 were Female
- 4/16 were from Summer Research Programs
At the end of the day, I feel good to be at home with my roommate sitting on the couch talking about the day. Human beings are social animals that are nourished off communication. That human desire to be recognized, to be connected, and thereby to be real and meaningful. The lack of real connection in modern civilization is a cause of mental dis-ease. As traditional communities continually break down, and people become atomized individuals, we’re left with our parents, our siblings, our children, our spouse (bf/gf), and one or two best friends if we’re lucky. Most people don’t have anywhere near that many connections. Among my friends, they have only their coworkers (or fellow grad students), maybe a boyfriend/girlfriend, and a handful of old friends.
As I am leaving my current home in the next few months, I’m going to miss that feeling of connection, of companionship.
How many housemates or roommates have you lived with?
I’m using the word roommate which I take as the same as anyone living in the same home as you, i.e. apartment or house or same room.
My longer posts are on the back burner for now. This next year is a transitional one as I still am trying to figure out my new path while abandoning my old paths in computer science and higher education. So, my thoughts are still forming, my focus is on my career and life destiny. Like the title of this site, I’m still designing my future.