People Share Which Life Lessons They Had To Learn In Dorm Life
Dorms are your transitionary space between real life and life with your parents.
Once you get a taste of living on your own, you can't get enough. But as such, you need to create your own space, make your own rules, and set your own boundaries.
You're not quite equipped with all those skills straight away, and it takes time to learn them.
Here were some of the answers.
I'm a very introverted person, but I think anyone can relate to this — You don't really miss alone time until you can't get any. No matter how well you get along with your roommate, there are times when you just want some personal space and somewhere that's just -yours- to escape to. I was lucky enough to have a car for the last semester of on-campus living, and would routinely go for drives alone to get some space (rural college). If I didn't have that, I might have gone insane.
Some parents never actually teach their children how to live like healthy humans. Some people have never cleaned a room (or never done it without being made to), have never done laundry, never cooked a meal or paid a bill. Some of them stop bathing entirely, despite pleading roommates and neighbors dealing with someone who's stench permeates everything they own and seeps through the walls and can be smelled in the room across the hall.
Open your window and really listen to the Chinese grad student who happens to be an exceptionally good whistler as he crosses the quad. Never again in your life will you hear someone whistle Debussy's Claire de Lune with as much beauty and skill.
And always wear flip-flops in showers that are shared by the entire floor.
A Cohabit By Any Other Name
That cohabiting with anyone will carry a "price of admission." No matter how well you get along, and how much you enjoy living together, your roommate will have certain traits that drive you f*cking insane.
For example, I lived with the same roommate for 3 years of college. He was a great guy--tidy, quiet, friendly, respectful, law abiding. But dude was from a tropical climate. He kept the thermostat maxed out, plus another space heater and a humidifier running 24/7 in the winter. It was like a jungle in our room.
Needless to say, this threatened our domestic tranquility. Freshman year, we fought about it through the entire winter. I'd open a window and snap at him to put on a sweater; he'd whine about his sore throat for days.
At the end of the spring term, we had a heart-to-heart about whether we wanted to sign up to live together next year. And he gave me an ultimatum: we could compromise about anything but the humidity. He just couldn't get comfortable in the dry winter air, and he refused to live in a room that wasn't damp.
After a lot of thought, I agreed. Plenty of people have rooming situations that are outright hostile--they just can't get along with their roommates; or they're living with people who disrespect their space or their stuff or their time. We didn't have that. All we had was a fight over the thermostat. (and it's not like I was perfect--dude contributed way more than his fair share to keeping the place up.)
So that was the "price of admission" for living with Kevin. We bought some tropical plants and a tiger-stripe rug, I wore tank tops and kept a glass of iced tea handy all winter long. And it was fine.
tl;dr: NOBODY IS PERFECT. If the domestic union is working in all other respects, you may have to decide to suck it up and accommodate a couple idiosyncrasies.
Whether it's putting in your earplugs to drown out the K-pop, or picking up a couple diet coke cans that aren't yours, or replacing the toilet paper, sometimes "compromise" really means picking up the slack.
Don't be a pushover (and never tolerate disrespect), but understand that roommates are never 100% compatible.
Open Door, Open Heart
Leave your door (and your mind) open and people will flock to you. I lived in the honors dorm as a freshman, in what we lovingly called "the tower of screaming virgins." Top floor, all-female, everyone on the honors track for something STEMy. Everyone kept their doors shut and the hall was sterile and silent all year. But they told me at orientation to leave my door open if I wanted to make friends, so every day, I'd prop the door open and go about my business. Slowly, people started venturing in to hang out with me or just have a short conversation. I would always welcome it, and when I couldn't take people, I'd just close my door to be left alone. That whole year, I made friends I still talk to (this was 2012-13) because they'd walk in off the stairwell, see my open door, and come in to say hi. Naturally, not everyone stayed; there's always friend-turnover after the dorms. But I had a better time and felt really well-liked and less homesick that way.
I'm not a naturally friendly person and I tend to be standoffish at first, even shy. But I make friends everywhere because I learned in college that you can make the tiniest effort to invite people in and they'll go with both feet.
SO MANY THINGS
I never considered myself a neat freak until I moved into the dorms. My first roommate was so messy, you could see the divide in the room of my side versus hers. She constantly kept buying more stuff. Piles of books and clothes everywhere. I let her borrow my bowl once and it sat dirty on her desk with food in it for days. As a result, I kept my side of the room absolutely spotless otherwise we would have drowned in filth. Funny though come move out day, I was all packed and ready to go, so much so mom and I went shopping and bought some shoes and came back for some more boxes, the parents hadn't even dented the mess that was her side. Mom and I left laughing. I've been keeping things tidy ever since.
It's Like Dating A Co-Star
As much as you can avoid it, don't date on the same floor. I repeat, don't date on the same floor. You will regret if later when you constantly see that person when you two break up.
You Are Gorgeous, You Human
Some people arent suited to living with others.
Some can change and adapt, others will continue living like they did at home where the magical cleaning fairy cleans everything for them.
Your actions have consequences on others. And being in close quarters doesn't let you escape from them easily. In other words, you'll learn a lot of relationship lessons through experience. Some good, many not so good. But the not so good lessons/experiences will hopefully have a better effect on future you in dealing with relationships in your work career.
Fire In The DiscoGiphy
Was an RA for 3 years. Here's my advice, for the dorms and life.
Don't leave the microwave running unattended.
Make friends with people in other dorms/locations for when there are fire alarms or other emergencies.
Check to make sure you have your keys with you before you leave, even if it's just go to the bathroom down the hall. Everywhere you go, check to make sure you have your wallet, keys, and phone, or whatever would be extremely inconvenient if you lost.
You don't have to be best friends with your roommate. A quiet roommate is better than a fun one that lied about his felony record. Same goes for neighbors, coworkers, and more.
Keep a regular schedule, and share it with your roommate so you don't walk in on each other choking the chicken. Meet your needs, and allow others to meet theirs.
What life lessons did you learn in the dorms?
Reddit user lLoveYourCat asked: 'How did you think babies were made when you were little?'
In the United States, it's no secret that sex education for minors is inconsistent at best.
But some people learned very unexpected stories about how babies were made, and those stories had a way of making a lasting impression.
Curious about other's stories, Redditor ILoveYourCat asked:
"How did you think babies were made when you were little?"
One Time's the Charm
"I knew babies came from sex as a fairly young child. My parents never sugar-coated that. But for some reason, as a kid, I thought you only had to have sex once to have multiple pregnancies. I seriously didn't fix that misunderstanding until early middle school."
"At some point, when I finally accepted that you had to have sex to have a baby, I thought the only time people have sex was to make a baby, and it only took one time to get the job done."
"Then when I figured out teenagers were having sex, I thought you had to be married and have sex to make a baby, but then when my unmarried cousin got pregnant, I was just confused."
"But I was sure my parents only had sex four times, and then when my mom got pregnant with number five, I thought, 'Wow, they did it again.'"
"A stork delivered them, of course. What the f**k, lol (laughing out loud)."
"Storks... I thought people trained them to steal babies from a factory and you would leave special treats on your doorstep as payment and encouragement for the stork to steal one for you."
"I was scared to death of birds for the longest time and would have a tantrum at the zoo when I saw a flamingo."
Young Conspiracy Theorist
"The government. I used to think that we lived in a totalitarian society and that the government was in complete control of everything."
"I thought the President sent people their babies when asked by mail."
Scheduled Baby Delivery
"The women in my family explained to me at the age of six that a doctor calls you sometime after reaching adulthood at the age of 18 to schedule a baby delivery date."
"The husband either pays to schedule the appointment or the government does after verifying that you have been married and financially stable for quite some time."
"When two people kissed."
"I thought the same thing, but I understood that when my mom gave me a kiss, there was no risk. Being someone raised in a very Christian background, I assumed that when you got married, God made kissing a reproductive act."
"Since I made this assumption, I remember questioning why teenage pregnancy could possibly be an issue."
The Ultimate Christmas Gift
"I thought Santa was bringing them."
"He was. I mean, Christmas comes but once a year..."
"I MAY NEVER ENJOY CHRISTMAS AGAIN."
A New Meaning to 'Forest Friends'
"When I used to ask my dad where I came from, he'd say he found me under a rock in the forest. Of course, I would go look for babies under rocks, too, but all I ever saw was dirt and those rolly-polly pill bug thingies."
"It was so gross thinking babies were just found THERE that I was actually relieved to find out how they were actually made!"
Pregnant By Proximity
"I thought women got pregnant by just being around a man, and I was always confused about what would happen if a woman still lived with her parents or dad after she’s an adult."
Coming of Age Story
"I thought it was a 'just happens once you reach a certain age' sorta thing. As a woman, I was terrified because pregnancy sounds like the most awful thing, lol (laughing out loud)."
"(I know the end result is worth it but even as a 31-year-old, I'm like, nope.)"
"I thought they grew like a seed inside the mother's belly."
"Technically, that’s true."
"Well, not like that."
The Power of Marriage
"My mum told me you couldn't have a baby if you weren't married. Note that she said 'couldn't', not 'shouldn't'."
"When my unmarried cousin was sleeping a lot my mum told my aunt 'she's having a baby'. I thought 'she can't be having a baby, she isn't married.'"
"A couple of weeks later she had an engagement party, quickly followed by a registry office wedding. She had a baby a few months later."
"I thought they grew on trees. True story."
"Baby trees, lol (laughing out loud)."
"I was surprised when I learned how it really happened, lol. I was like, 'You mean there are no trees?' And Mom just shook her head."
They Were Just There
"I don't recall a time where I gave the matter any thought without knowing the reality of it."
"Like, literally, until the day I was first introduced to the concept of birth, I don't think I cared where babies came from."
"Right, the little guys just EXISTED."
Educated Is Best
"I asked my mom and she told me the truth."
"Educate your kids, folks. They can handle it."
"I didn’t... They just showed up, honestly."
"That’s what I thought. I was terrified as a little kid that I’d wind up being a teenage mother because I thought it just happened spontaneously."
"Exactly what I thought would happen. Like one day you were just, boom, six months pregnant."
While these responses might be funny, it's an important reminder of an area in the educational system that's often lacking.
But in the meantime, while the system's curriculum is getting sorted out, at least we can take comfort in the fact that we weren't alone in believing these tall tales.
One of life's many challenges to being successful and happy is to work hard and stay focused on our respective goals.
There are many obstacles that can discourage us, but persistence and a drive to overcome can be rewarding.
Unfortunately, there are some things that are simply beyond our control, and it has nothing to do with fate.
It's the qualities we're either born with or without that can impede us or prevent us from ever achieving what can only be seen as a pipe dream.
Curious to hear examples of one of life's cruelties, Redditor G00dR1ddance asked:
"How did your genetics f'k you over?"
These Redditors were unhappy with appearances.
"Lazy eye, and a total lack of depth perception."
"Same. Do you struggle with driving? I just moved to a big city and I can’t drive here bc navigating all the traffic is too hard with no depth perception. It’s so scary!"
The Worst Parts
"Moms Family: Perfect teeth, male baldness. Dad's family: Terrible teeth, perfect hairline."
"Me: Sh**ty teeth, bald before 25. My 2 brothers: Perfect Teeth, Perfect Hairline."
"Feels FN bad."
"They should all chip in for a trip for you to Turkey for a cheap hair transplant and dental work."
Made For Farming
"All 4 grandparents were farmers. I look like I was bred to farm and f**k to make more little farm workers. Broad shoulders, big boobs, no waist, no @ss worth mentioning, and thick legs. I just look like I was bred to work forever until I die. 120 years ago."
Stop With The Flattery
"I too am sturdily built. I am not tall but I am muscular and broad with the big boobs and the broad hips and sturdy legs. I could carry very heavy sacks of feed from when I was very small. My family nickname was 'the forklift truck', so that's.. nice."
Room For More
"My mother’s OB said she had a pelvis ‘you could drive a bus through’. I was a natural breach birth and share those genetics. You could host the last supper on my a** and have room for plus ones."
These Redditors are living on borrowed time.
"Bad heart. I'm the first male in at least 4 generations to make it to 40. And that's only because I was finally properly diagnosed and treated. I wouldn't have made it to 35 if I didn't find the right cardiologist."
"Bum ticker - dad’s aorta exploded when I was 11 and my brother died from the second heart at 41. Just hoping to see my 60s."
Being Kept At Bay
"I have a blood condition where I retain iron. It's slowly killing me. Destroyed my liver, pancreas, and led to a massive heart attack."
"Fortunately, I live in the 21st century where modern medicine can keep me going with...bleeding."
"Sad Aspect" Of A Family
"My oldest uncle married a woman who had Huntington's, but they were very young and she wasn't symptomatic yet. In the 70s so no genetic testing or much public awareness. They had 5 daughters. My aunt and their eldest have long since passed away, and the remaining 4 are in various stages of the disease. It's always been a sad aspect of our family. A truly cruel disease."
"I’m BRCA2 positive, giving me roughly 74% chances of developing an incurable genetic breast cancer in my life. It also gives me about 22% of having an ovarian cancer."
"On the other side, double mastectomy lowers my chances to about 3%, but it should ideally be done before I reach 30. I will also need a hysterectomy in my 40s."
"I had 50/50 chance of getting the BRCA2 gene mutation so well, genetics did f'k me over!"
Redditors share more of their crosses to bear in life after being blessed with these traits.
"I'm more attractive to mosquitoes than most people. If I'm out when mosquitoes are around, I end up covered in bites (which I'm also allergic to, so I end up with quarter sized welts that itch for daaaays after the fact)."
It's sobering to realize the ailments your parents struggled with are starting to become our own to bear.
High blood pressure, arthritis, and predisposition to atherosclerosis are some of the undesirable parts of my family's genetic makeup that I never really thought about until I noticed how fatigued and in pain I've become with age.
Although I have so much gratitude for surviving every year I get to celebrate my birthday, getting old still sucks.
Being let go from your job is never a pleasant experience.
Particularly if it comes out of nowhere, without any possible warning that this was a possibility.
Even if it isn't any more pleasant, generally speaking, most people have at least an inkling of why they were let go.
Budgetary reasons, dissolved departments, being told you weren't meeting company standards, or bad blood with the boss.
As well as some less common, highly unusual reasons which at least might make a good story down the line.
Redditor Sweetlo123 was curious to hear from people who were let go from their jobs, and why they were met with this fate, leaving them to ask:
"What did you get fired for?"
For Standing Up For What's Right.
"We were told we get OT for night work."
"The new 'company manager' let it slip that we don't actually get OT for night work, so when I was scheduled for five nights in a row working on a transmission line cell site I mentioned that I expect everyone working from our company on site get OT."
"Once it was said that we won't get OT and that it wasn't an actual policy (was written in employee handbook), I forwarded the email chain to the entire company and leadership at Verizon."
"I was canned, but now everyone gets OT for night work."
"My life is better now anyway and got my people what the deserve."- drklunk
This Was Never Going To End Well...
"Aggressively squeezing breakfast muffins lol."
"I was a few days into working at Mcds and someone complained I gave them a muffin that was too hard-they bake them at like 3 am and sit in a warmer all day."
"This was before they had the full bakery menu, I think muffins was the only thing baked and maybe cookies."
"So my manager told me to squeeze them before I hand them out."
"Me being a dumb teenager squeezed the s*it out of these muffins and got another complaint."
"They stopped scheduling me, haha."- eatmyknuts
You Have To Do The Work To Get Paid...
"I just stopped working and began only attending meetings."
"Lasted almost 9 months that way before they let me go."- frantictossingmartin freeman sleeping GIFGiphy
Wrong Time, Wrong Place
"I was fired after a month into my first job at a local pizza joint when I was 16."
"They called me during the Super Bowl and said I had to come in."
"I told them I was out of state without a car so no way I could make it."
"They said I should’ve known this was one of the busiest days of the year and I should’ve stayed in the area."
"I came in to work my next shift and they just gave me my paycheck and said they had to let me go for not being a team player."
"10 years later I was fired from a job in tech because I refused to move out of state."
"This one hurt a lot more."- seventyfive1989
Hard Not To Say They Had It Coming...
"The company's timeclock software ran off of the computers time, so when I was late I would just close the software, change the time back to before shift start and then clock in and change it back."
"The supervisor who showed me the trick fired me."
"A day or two later he saw me pulling in late, and when he went over the time info that day, it showed me clocked in on time."
"He knew why."- Grief-Inc
Nepotism Always Screws Someone Over...
"Worked at a gas station and was a sucker for the free soda."
"I would drink a few 24 oz glasses of Dr. Pepper (don’t judge) per shift and had to piss relatively frequently."
"I usually worked with the same lady every shift and every shift my drawer came up short even like $10-20 bucks."
"One day my usual co-worker was off and I worked with another lady who warned me to watch my drawer around the other and hers had been short when she was around."
"That got me to thinking."
"The next shift with the usual lady I stuck some receipt paper into the lip of the bottom of my drawer and hit the bead."
"When I came back the paper was on the floor."
"My drawer was short $20 at shift change and my boss fired me."
"I told her of my findings and asked her to review the security tape."
"She told me to f*ck right off the other lady had been there years."
"I left heart broken and rented some VHS tapes to indulge in and recover."
"One of the movies was Casino and man is that a good movie."
"Come to find out the usual lady was the boss lady’s cousin and they f*ckin told people I knew I got fired for stealing money."
"I though about calling a lawyer but also, I was in high school and was delusional I suppose."
"I got out of that town after high school and rarely return, especially considering all my family moved off."- woohhaaSnl Smiling GIF by Saturday Night LiveGiphy
The Age Old Story Of Men In Power
"Caught the boss stealing."
"So he fired me."
"His word vs. mine and it didn't go my way."- freezingprocess
People Tend To Get What They Deserve
"Embezzled almost $500,000 from the doctor's office I worked at."
"Oh no, wait."
"That was my former supervisor who did that...26 years after she fired me for taking home a left over slice of pizza after a drug rep hosted a pizza party for the office staff."
"Karma can take a long time, but it always comes through."- YourFront
Late To The Game...
"Being the last hired when they instituted layoffs."- BubbhaJebus
Some Plans Can't Be Cancelled
"1970s YES 'Close to the Edge' tour."
"I had my tickets and had the request approved for time off, they changed their mind at the last minute and would not let me off."
"Left anyways and was genuinely surprised when I got back on Monday and they informed me that I was fired."-AmandaBRecondwith
Treat Others Like You Want To Be Treated
"My boss was talking sh*t about me to employees, and I confronted her with 'how would you expect the people below me to respect me when you show them that you don’t?'"
"She didn’t like it and literally went crying to the owners, who then fired me for 'causing problems'.”- Successful-Snow-562
For Literally Doing What They Were Supposed To
"I got fired for slacking off and underperforming at work by taking my legally required lunch."- 10leejHungry Lets Eat GIF by TRTGiphy
They Couldn't Have Waited One Day?
"Worked as a QA tester for an online game company."
"Found bug while on my personal account at home."
"Came in the next day and reported the bug."
"I was VERY clear I found the bug while playing at home on my personal account."
"It was a nasty bug that let you duplicate very expensive items."
"A few weeks later someone in customer service was checking the logs for people exploiting the bug."
"They found mine and the company decided to fire me on my birthday."
"That was around 15 years ago but it still upsets me every year, on my birthday."- PedanticCyborg
While most believe "ignorance is bliss", anyone handed a pink slip deserves to know why.
Even if sometimes the reason gives no closure whatsoever, and instead only results in even more questions.
Certain locations really damper on a good time.
For instance, it's not fun to do it in cramped spaces.
Looking at you, airplane bathrooms and backseat of cars.
Many cannot be bothered to maneuver in some odd location.
Beds. Beds are sexy.
Always were, always will be.
Redditor sasukelikescarrots wanted to hear about the places we should all avoid when getting it on, so they asked:
"What do you think are some overrated places to have sex?"
One... I'm claustrophobic.
Two... there is not enough time.
Fatal Attraction lied to us y'all.
The WorstThe Beach Summer GIF by Kel CripeGiphy
"The beach is the worst."
"I hate sand so much so I agree with you."
Let Alone Two
"Airplane bathroom. Too cramped, and smells gross. Keep your Mile High Club pendant."
"I was thinking this too. I am also willing to bet that 99% of people who claim to be in the Mile High Club are lying through their teeth. Seriously, there's barely any space in those lavatories for one person, let alone two, and it's a little hard to get aroused when you're worrying about turbulence and people waiting to use the toilet knocking on the door."
"Public toilets... Why would you even..."
"The only reason I can think of is being a kid of an overprotective parent in high school and you want to desperately get it on with your boyfriend. Public restrooms are the only option sometimes. (Experience)."
"The pool and the shower."
"I hate the shower. I think it was a comedian who said, 'I’ve never been having sex and thought you know what would make this better… If one of us was freezing.'"
"I personally like the shower cause my partner likes to be in the water and I like being cold so it works out cause sex gets me pretty warm anywho."
"The shower is for foreplay, not sex. Pretty much every time we shower together it’s a given that it will lead to sexy time, whether we were planning on it or not/in the mood or not…. intimacy and touching, etc.,?…. we just B-line for the bedroom. But sex IN the shower?… no."
And a Happy Meal?happy ronald mcdonald GIF by McDonald's CZ/SKGiphy
"McDonalds ball pit…"
"They have a cleaning machine that can clean all the balls and it's all sanitary. I think that could be a really good time"
Have some decorum people.
I'd go to Burger King.
Check PleaseApplebees GIFGiphy
"The men's room at Applebee's during Happy Hour on a Tuesday."
"I spent my teens and early 20s having sex in cars. About a year ago (I'm almost 40) the wife and I are out and in the mood so let's have sex in the car like we used to. Bad idea, how the f**k did we used to have sex all the time back there, now it's uncomfortable and I got a cramp in my leg."
"Yes. The handful of times I’ve tried this, it’s always been so cramped and you need to keep repositioning or someone bumps their head. I guess it could be fine if you had one of those huge American tanks, but cars here in Australia never have that much room inside."
"Churches and graveyards. I've done it in both, and it's not really that great."
"Never in my life have I thought either of those locations sounded like a fun place to have sex. I guess if you have a kink for getting caught then it's as good as any because there's this perception of it being sacrosanct, but it just seems at best uncomfortable and at worst going to get me on a registry somewhere.
"Waterbeds. One of my GF's had one, and I *hated* it. It's impossible to get traction or the proper angle."
"Good call. There’s nothing to push off of. Nowhere to plant knees either. A true s**t show."
"I knew there was a reason why I forgot about my waterbed! Thanks for reminding me about that abomination!"
Wow. I mean. Y'all have really gone out and experimented fully.