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  1. #11
    Senior Member Nicodemus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patches View Post
    The fake one I made for TypoC doesn't count. If I'm not weird enough already, trying to friend her as an anthropomorphised panda named Patches Bear who claims to live at the San Diego Zoo is really going to creep her out.
    I would find that delightful.

  2. #12
    insert random title here Randomnity's Avatar
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    oh yeah, it's fun to cook with roommates once in a while, whether it's just one or many (I do both every so often). You each contribute roughly equal amounts of things price-wise and share cooking effort. Best if arranged beforehand for multiple people but for a single roommate you can just be like "hey wanna make a stirfry? I have X, what do you have". Works best if you have a fair bit of overlapping taste in food/seasonings.

    I've never shared groceries with roommates directly, that just seems like trouble.

    Also, I watch movies/TV shows with roommates every so often, and play video games (really just diablo2) with one of them a few times a week. Sometimes if I feel extra social I'll come hang out with my laptop downstairs, but don't really talk to anyone.

    (keep editing this as I think of new things): Also it's good to just cook at the same time without sharing food, then you can socialize a bit without feeling like you're wasting time, since you have to cook anyway.
    -end of thread-

  3. #13
    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    If you have quirks like not wanting to be talked to for a certain amount of time after you get home, etc, let the person know that early on, rather than allowing them to think that they have done something wrong or that you don't like them.

    I think your idea of being in the general living space some of the time, even if you are doing your own thing would make a big difference. It is much easier to communicate openly and easily with someone whom you have some sort of working relationship with.

    I wouldn't recommend sharing groceries, because I think it spawns a lot of needless problems. I also didn't like the idea of long drawn out meals and cooking for each other that my roommates had when I was going to university. On the other hand, it wouldn't hurt to have one night like that every week/two weeks/month as something to look forward to. You can either decide what courses each of you want to do or take turns making a meal for each other. You really do get to know each other better that way and when I did it with people whom I shared a small apartment complex with (we each had our own place) and we cooked for each other or had people over, I actually enjoyed it, felt closer to them, and became a better cook because there was someone I needed to cook for.

    Little things like choosing to have one or two conversations a day go a long ways towards making living with one another much more enjoyable for both parties.

    During university I had different friends than my roommate and went home on weekends, so the occasional night that we did something together or just hung out exercising or watching TV were pleasant. I have found that including the other person in some kind of activity that you need/want to do anyways (grocery shopping, exercise, running errands, watching a particular show etc) is sometimes a way to spend some time together without it sucking loads of time out of your own life or draining you too much.

  4. #14
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patches View Post
    This sounds like exactly what I'm looking for. How to appease someone who has that desire to laugh, hang out, cook meals together, etc. Do you have any examples of how to 'be inviting'?
    I agree with everything that people have been saying about being up front about yourself and your expectations, in advance. From my experiences with roommates, it's always best to have "the talk" as soon as possible -- i.e. laying down the ground rules for your relationship (e.g. bill-paying, having friends/partners over) and warning them about your quirks in advance. I really liked YWIR's post regarding that -- and even though it doesn't solve the entire problem, it will remove the awkwardness factor entirely; they won't wonder about why you're so quiet and always on a computer anymore.

    But regarding "being inviting"... I agree with everything that gromit said, and I would add that trying to initiate one or two fun roommate activities would be a good idea. If the roommate doesn't have fun, then you don't need to try anymore -- but it'll show that you care, and if she's shy/intimidated/awkward around you, then being the one to initiate ought to make her more comfortable offering roommate activities to you. In fact, after initiating one fun interaction, you may not need to initiate one again.
    I was actually wondering about this. If I sit in the living room on my laptop instead of hiding back in my room on my PC. Do you think this would work? I was worried she might just feel awkward about me ALWAYS being on my computer. But this seemed like the best option for me. To spend a certain amount of time each day in the living room with my laptop, casually chatting while I play games or browse forums. You don't think this is weird at all and would further ostracize me at all? Because this is my best plan, heh.
    Yes, that would be a great idea. You want to seem accessible to your roommate, and if you're behind a closed door all the time, she may feel like she'd be bothering you if she talked to you. But if you're on your laptop in the living room (without headphones on!), then she'll feel perfectly comfortable talking to you. Even leaving the door to your room open while you're in there ought to help some.

    I don't think it would ostracize you at all. I figure she'd know you're on your computer all the time anyway, whether you were in the living room or not. (And considering the options of what you might be doing in your room all day, being on your computer is probably the least creepy thing. Might even be reassuring to her!)

    But overall, what matters most to seeming like a nice roommate (not just a good roommate; I think you're looking for more than that at this point) is being friendly and thoughtful.
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  5. #15
    ThatGirl
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    Good roommates have significant others and spend most of their time at their place. They rarely come home, and when they do its mostly to shower, grab some clothes, and head out the door again.

  6. #16
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    You sound lovely, except for the part about not being able to communicate about something as mundane as the thermostat or passing in the kitchen.

    Introverted roommates who are quiet and clean up after themselves are fine, but on the other hand it is a bit strange to live with someone who you can't occasionally address in either a polite "hello how are you" or "is it too hot in here?" sort of manner. That's the only thing I would suggest you'd make an effort on.

    If you don't want living together to be a social affair, it doesn't have to be.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by gromit View Post
    I'm sure it depends a lot on the person.

    For me, I really appreciate when people say things like "how was your day?" and then listen, or remember things like a test, or a trip or a visit to help my mom with stuff or something and ask how it went... or just followup questions in general to show that you are interested in their well-being. Also I have found that if you ask good follow-up questions the other person talks a lot and you can just listen and enjoy what they are saying. Eat and cook together from time to time and maybe get a little drunk every once in awhile. I try to do or cook or make nice things for my roommates that I know they will like... hm I'm thinking what else... actually cooking and eating together is a really fun one. Nothing like a bottle of wine too, right?

    I know this is a lot to ask, but I like when people give me hugs, I've ended up in pretty huggy relationships with all of my roommates, male and female. But obviously I wouldn't expect that of people, it just happens.

    Also, I like doing this thing my friend calls "parallel play" where you and another person or other people are just doing your own thing, but in a shared space. Like surfing the internet, or reading, watching TV/cooking, whatnot. You don't really interact completely just be near each other. You can make an occasional comment or share a funny link or something, but no pressure.

    My new roommate goes in his room a lot and closes the door but he comes out and talks too, so I think it will be fine.
    I'm pretty much like this too. I can't say I've had many roommates who I didn't at least try to get to know on some level. I've shared food and other items with roommates, made agreements on "I'll trade you this for that," cooked meals together, talk about our problems...I tend to be pretty friendly as a roommate...on the other hand I don't like it when people try to make a home into a party house, then I go into "kill" mode...I was okay with that for a while when I was VERY VERY YOUNG (I'm talking like 20 and under) ...but I detest people like that now because I need quiet and alone time.

    On the other hand, I don't think Patches should be forced to act like someone she's not, and maybe if she just makes a tiny bit more effort not to be awkward and creepy (heh) it's quite alright for her to be the ISTJ she is and maybe she just needs a roommate who is sort of like she is, and/or is comfortable with it.

    I would be comfortable with it as long as it wasn't too awkward/creepy because I've lived alone before.

  8. #18
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    Oh you know something that is really cool? The last place I lived my roommates would buy ingredients and have me cook, that way I basically got free food (and I'm talking like good food, steaks and other niceties made from scratch), and they got someone to cook something they either can't or don't want to cook for themselves. That was nice.

    There must be other ways to finagle such a trade-off, if you don't cook - you know, a way to interact and share without feeling pressured to be heavily social if you don't like to talk that much.

  9. #19
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
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    You sound like an awesome roommate. The ghost who cleans. Most of my suggestions have been covered already (spending more time doing your own thing in communal space where you're accessible, showing interest in what's going on in housemate's life etc). Given that you're a baker it'd be a nice touch to invite her to try what you've cooked, even if you have to knock on her door to do it. I think it also helps a lot to establish a friendly, comfortable tone very early on. Make a point of having some getting-to-know-you conversations (giving her an MBTI test could help with that), a movie night perhaps, possibly a drinking binge or two. Moving into the space of someone else can be quite intimidating and awkward, so it's great to be made to feel welcome and comfortable asap so you don't get into the habit of tiptoeing around one another. Make sure she knows that if you disappear for a while it isn't anything she's done, just you being you. If you hear her moving around in the kitchen and it's roughly a mealtime for you go and cook something too. That's a very low-pressure chat opportunity, and if it's at all stilted you can always take your food off to your room when it's ready, which is a very natural exit point anyway. You don't even have to talk really, just being a friendly and available presence goes a long way to making people feel at ease, and if they need a friendly ear for some reason they don't have to go out of their way to find one.

  10. #20
    Klingon Warrior Princess Patches's Avatar
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    I'm really appreciating all the advice. Im going to have to read through them all again. I'll be meeting her either Sunday or Monday. I shall document my progress here for advice and support.

    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    Make a point of having some getting-to-know-you conversations (giving her an MBTI test could help with that)
    That seems REALLY weird to me. Asking someone IRL to take an MBTI test? How does that go down?
    “Everybody has a secret world inside of them. All of the people of the world, I mean everybody. No matter how dull and boring they are on the outside, inside
    them they've all got unimaginable, magnificent, wonderful, stupid, amazing worlds. Not just one world. Hundreds of them. Thousands maybe.” -Neil Gaiman

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