i've debated writing about this story for a very long time. it involves a lot of people (one of them who i don't talk to anymore), the situation was pretty involved, and there is quite a bit to cover that i honestly can't get into in a less-than-6-minute-read blog post. it's not gonna happen but... i think it has to be done.
this event was literally one of the craziest things that's ever happened to me. and at the end of the day, this blog is all about entertainment.
it was the summer going into college when i first got my room assignment. i was really excited to meet my first roommate. one of my mom's roommates in college, Miranda, was and is still a great friend of hers! i wanted that dynamic. i wanted to make a friend. like i've explained before, i've never really had a close girlfriend in my life. needless to say i was thrilled to be meeting and living with someone who was liberal, my age, and maybe shared similar interests and hobbies.
i emailed them in August, the day i found their contact info. they seemed super cool from what i was able to stalk of them on social media. about a month later, they contacted me back. they had been on a trip overseas and hadn't seen my email until now. we followed each other on instagram and immediately started texting. we talked about our lives, our hobbies, our classes, and all sorts of stuff.
skip forward to moving day. i remember that day just wanting to get all my shit in. i wanted to set up my room, get to know my roommate, go to some events, meet some people. it was a lot of emotions in a very short time. i was happy and excited but also nervous and scared. my parents were leaving me. i didn't know this person i would be living with for a year or anyone else around me. but at the end of the day, i liked being independent. i was ready for change.
i moved into a dorm called Old Barrows– a women, trans, and gender-non-conforming residential
co-op safe space on campus. the house was really cool. even though i didn't live there my second year, i still feel a very strong connection to the house. i cooked meals there. i cleaned the toilets. i took long showers and cried in them. it was a special place. but there were definitely strange things about it as well.
i had never lived in a regular dorm before. everyone else living in the house was older than my roommate and i, other than Ellie who was also in our year. basically, living in Old B was not your typical first year residential experience. the house was located on the most southern point of campus, about a 10 minute walk from the north quad. there were about thirteen people in the house at its lowest capacity. i spent most of my time in my dorm, studying in my room, or calling my girlfriend from my phone.
then came the roommate aspect.
the first week of college i was really starting to get to know the person i was living with. they were extremely smart. i remember coming back from class and freaking out over how i would get my assignments done. but no matter what was happening, they always helped me. they were a great writer and very poetic. i definitely respected them. and most of all, i wanted to make things work between us. they were very nice and wanted to be my friend too. but there were definitely some major differences.
my roommate loved to go out. it was pretty chill because on those nights i could facetime my long distance girlfriend and order in some Dominos. and to set the record straight i have no issue with my roommate going out. but sometimes i would hear stories. people would tell me they would get very intoxicated and that they had trouble limiting their substance intake. i became worried. my roommate called me "too motherly" but i cared about them and i cared about our living situation.
during the day i would go to my classes, then come back to study around 4p. usually i'd bring some ingredients home for dinner, or i'd order something or go to the co-op. my roommate on the other hand would usually be up all night. they had trouble sleeping and would listen to music or get their homework done until 1 or 2 in the morning. they would also drink during the day. often they drank this diluted vodka from the local drugstore. but there was a special drink they showed me how to make. it included espresso, coconut vodka, and almond milk. they liked to drink that in the morning. one day i found them tweaking a little bit in our dorm room. it must have been like noon. i had just came back from the lunch cleaning shift. they told me they were tripping. it was literally a Monday.
after several weeks in room 200, the place became a mess. there were empty wine bottles, cigarette butts, and dirty panties stacked high across the rug. i started to feel uncomfortable in my own house. but i wanted to be cool so badly. i didn't want to have to move out. but then shit hit the fan.
in October, my roommate met Luke. im changing his name for security purposes but anyone who knows my first roommate definitely knows this person. Luke was a nice guy when i met him and visited my roommate from time to time at our dorm. i first met him when we were going to a Rocky Horror Picture Show screening that we ended up being too late for and missing, but we got extremely drunk and had a good time regardless. towards the end of the night however, shit got weird. my roommate had gotten so wasted that they passed out on top of the toilet. it was at that moment i realized the severity of the problem. i tried to usher them into our room but they insisted on going home to stay with Luke. i didn't know what to do. the two of them were dating and i knew that everything most likely would be okay. but i couldn't help but worry that my roommate was intoxicated and in the hands of someone older that i didn't really know.
after that night, i talked to my roommate about the situation. they said everything was fine and that i should stop worrying.
the first week of November was parents weekend and my grandmother decided to come visit. i was so happy to see a recognizable face. i can just be me with my grandma. she knows me. she loves me. and when she saw my dorm room, she told me to literally "get the fuck out immediately." i always knew that there was a problem with the situation, but i wanted so badly to make it work. i've done this with people so much in my past. abusive or bad situations that i just dealt with because i couldn't deal with confrontation. there was no doubt in my mind that my roommate was a good person. i just couldn't live with them anymore.
that night, my grandma and i went out to dinner with three of my new college friends– Rowan, Ellie, and Julian. Ellie lived in Old B with me across the hall and we became acquaintances early on in the semester. Rowan was also a friend from Old B. Ellie, Julian, and I all ate in the same dining co-op our first year. as we were sitting down, my grandmother asked if Ellie had a roommate this year. coincidentally, she didn't. her roommate left after orientation and Ellie had a dingle (double single). i looked across at my grandmother, confused at why she would ask Ellie that question.
"Perfect! Eva will live with you then!"
i was so embarrassed. my grandma had literally invited me to move into someones room that never frickin asked. but i looked over at Ellie and she seemed like she would be down. she said,
"Honestly, I've kinda wanted a roommate."
within half an hour i got five of my friends to pack up all my contents from room 200 and move them across the hall. we worked quickly for being exhausted at literally 9p, but i had to do what i had to do. i was so relieved i was living somewhere different now. away from them and away from the drama. i felt awful. i didn't want to give up on them but i also had to do what was best for me.
that same night i walked over to Oberlin Kitchen, the diner Luke was working at, and where my roommate also was finishing their homework. i came in through the doors crying, "You know I love you so much, I just think it's better for us to not live together. You and Luke can stay in our room." I made a white lie, "Ellie offered to have me move in and I accepted." they seemed sort of disappointed, probably that i hadn't spoken with them sooner about it, but mostly that they understood and wanted me to be happy. they knew for a while now that we were on separate schedules.
several days later i got a call from my HLEC, short for housing loose ends coordinator. it's basically like an RA. i can't obviously disclose what we talked about in that meeting but all i will say is the stuff i told you before about my roommate was starting to worry everyone else in the dorm. i eventually had to create boundaries with them. i didn't want them just coming into room unannounced and i didn't want to share my stuff with them anymore since they weren't equitable. i had no idea what was about to unfold next.
that night around 6p i was studying in my dorm room. Ellie was out eating at the co-op but i had ordered dinner in. suddenly i heard a loud bang from the other end of the hallway.
"Campus safety and security we need to speak with *********."
i jumped up from the bed and ran up to the keyhole so i could hear. the group of officers knocked several times on room 200 and then busted the door open. i couldn't catch anything after that but the sound of muffled walkie talkies. after about thirty minutes or so the noise subsided and it seemed that everyone had left the dorm. i was notified that my roommate had been removed from their room with Luke and they both were in an altered state. they were then taken to the hospital.
while i was scared and worried for them, i also felt a weird sense of relief. i was away from them. they were gone. a part of me felt safe and like this person could never harm me. but i spoke too soon.
that same night at around midnight, the two of them, my first roommate and Luke barged into Ellie and my room unannounced. the door had been unlocked. we were literally in our pajamas, getting baked, watching Glee. needless to say i was not prepared for a throw down. the two of them seemed hysterical. my roommate began pointing the finger at me. they thought i had ratted them out to the college. i had no idea what they were talking about. i never called officers on them. i didn't even know the two of them were in the room, let alone on substances, nor would i care. Luke threatened me and said that i basically tried to ruin his life. but my roommate began apologizing. they told me they were so sorry for accusing me of such a thing and that they wanted to be friends.
i was so weirded out about the whole situation. i needed them both out of my room. i needed them away from Ellie. i didn't want her to be scared of the fucking madness i just brought into her circle. i knew that my roommate wouldn't hurt me, but to be honest i didn't know Luke, he was much older than all of us, didn't go to the college, and i didn't trust him.
after the two of them verbally harassed me, i was able to get them out my room and lock the door. it was then that my housemates upstairs, my friends Kat and Julie, started texting me. they asked what had happened and that they had called Campus Safety and Security to assess the situation. i literally started laughing hysterically. Luke and my roommate thought i called S&S on them initially, and now S&S is actually going to come to Old B and they're gonna think i called S&S on them again... sure enough the officers came within several minutes. to my surprise, the officers actually knew who Luke was. from what i could hear of the discussion, Luke was placed on the college's No Trespass List which means that you cannot be on campus or in any campus-affiliated building. so um WHY ARE YOU IN OLD B. i was freaking out. we really didn't know who Luke was. after Luke and the officers went back and forth, they finally said there was nothing to really do but take him off the campus. my roommate couldn't get back into their room as the officers had locked it when they were both sent to the hospital. so i think they slept on the couch that night but i'm not sure.
the next day i was upset and scared, but i was determined. i never wanted something like this to happen to me or Ellie ever again. so i went to the S&S office on campus to file an official report. i knew by doing this my roommate would know. i knew something would probably happen to their student record, but i needed to protect myself. i had never been in this situation before and i sure as hell was not going to leave school over literally anything. i was here to learn and get my damn degree.
lets just say the aftermath was pretty brutal. my roommate was obviously crushed i had made a report and instantly went on the defensive. they claimed that i had been too motherly and worrisome about them. they threatened that i would eventually be caught by the school for smoking so much or something. they were hurt. they were defensive. we shared several emails back and forth, trying to meet up for coffee or something but nothing really ever came out of it. i won't share the personal details of theirs that ensued following the incident, but they left Oberlin and i never heard from them again.
and so that, my friends, was the first three months of college. whenever i explain the story to friends and family they literally all ask how i dealt with a situation like that. the thing is, you never know, you just do. when i filed the report, i was definitely pumped up on adrenaline. i was shoved into this unknown college environment, living with someone i'd never met, and i had to protect myself. i reacted strongly because i had to. this is some shit i still talk to my therapist about to this day. there is a lot of tension in my body simply from just the physical reaction of protecting myself. i'm always alert to strange situations. and at the end of the day, i don't feel angry or bitter or anything about it because i genuinely think my roommate is a good person. i just think they need some help and we weren't the right fit. i think they needed a friend who could give them a lot of reassurance. all i wanted to figure out my first year of college was about me. i needed to focus on that.
even though i went through all of that, i met a lot of amazing people from it. Ellie and I became roommates and we had a great dynamic. i loved living with her. i met Kat and Julie, a lesbian couple (know as my goofy sisters) who stuck up for me then, and still do now. and i met Hannah, who is one of my closest friends at school and actually moved into room 200 when I and eventually my roommate moved out.
so no matter what happens to you when you go to school, your first year or any year moving forward. just know that everything will work out. cause i can assure you. it doesn't get any crazier than this shit.
thank you guys for reading this story time post. please let me know your thoughts and opinions and make sure to comment YOUR roommate stories in the section below xox