Living with a best friend can work: A first-hand account

By Jordan Radloff

Most people have probably heard the age old saying: “Never become college dorm roommates with a friend from high school.” I chose to ignore this warning when planning my living arrangements for this semester. I am rooming with one of my best friends from my high school, Gabe Buan, and it has been a great experience so far.

I met Gabe all the way back in preschool, but he became one of my best friends in high school. When we both decided to come to NIU to study music, I asked him if he wanted to be roommates, and he agreed to my proposition.

From what I have heard, it is a popular opinion that living with someone you are already friends with can ruin the friendship. Two of my other friends, who attend Illinois State University, have been best friends since elementary school. They decided that it was in their best interests to preserve their friendship by becoming roommates with strangers.

Gabe and I moved into our dorm a week before classes started for marching band camp, which gave us time to adjust to our new living arrangement. Right away, there were many benefits of already knowing each other as we moved in.

Both of our families helped each other with hauling in our belongings and we were able to politely take turns being in our tiny dorm while setting everything up. I was able to fall asleep very easily on the first night because I didn’t have to think about dealing with a stranger being ten feet away from me all night.

Filling out our roommate agreement form was a breeze. We both trust each other well enough to have an understanding that it is okay for Gabe to use my TV when I’m not in the room, and I can ask to borrow water bottles when I run out. I never have the fear that I will be locked out of the room because we both make sure we both have our keys when we lock the door and we text each other regularly in order to keep each other informed of our whereabouts.

Gabe and I still continue to get along with each other very well three weeks into living together. We both respect each others wishes to have quiet time to do homework or study, yet we still set aside time to relax and watch ‘Friends’ or play Super Smash Bros. It’s great to be able to talk about our inside jokes and memes to remind ourselves of our hometown, Oswego, and it’s also a plus that we can be there for each other to prevent feeling homesick or lonely.

I hope this first hand account of living with a friend from high school proves that not all of these situations result in failure. Hopefully this trend will continue for the rest of the school year *knock on wood*.