How to Live with Cross-Cultured Flatmates
Living with a roommate/housemates can be a bit tricky. You may have a list of what would your ideal roommate/housemate like but face it, they are not you and you still have to deal with all the differences, arguments, that may your way. One of the biggest differences that you have to overcome is cultures.
Why can Culture become The Problem?
Cultures can be defined as the customs, arts, social institutions, and achievements of a particular nation, people, or another social group. The culture that one has influenced by its environment, how they are raised, their values, or norms. Every ethnic /racial will have different norms, values, and cultures that they brought from their country. Understanding and respecting other values could be hard since we are not used to them, whether its the way they think, the way they act, or the way the response to something. Although you try to talk things out, you will discover lots of unspoken norms or values so it’s okay if some day you get into arguments or a bit clash since you will be still in the adaptation phase.
Tips To Adapt to A Roommate With A Different Culture
Since you will be living with them most of the time it is always better to adapt to your surroundings. When you choose your housemate or roommate, you will eventually be started to know his or her background. If it is a bit awkward to ask too many questions from the beginning, find out on your way by googling, read or ask your closest one about your roommate /housemate cultures. Once you start to live together, spend time, ask questions, make time to get to know your housemate/roommate more deeply. Here are some key points for you to adapt easily to the difference.
- Be mindful and tolerate: Always try to convince your mind that every individual regardless of their culture is different. Be flexible and have an open mind. Everyone has different experiences. Set up your own list of things that you could tolerate from a person, this helps you to act and accept the situation in a more mature way.
- Try to be more realistic: There will come a time when you come across disagreements and conflicts. And that’s okay. You just need to be cool-headed and discuss it together. You have to understand that you are not always right nor always wrong.
- Be respectful and fair: Be the best version of yourself, before you decide to judge or not to like what your roommate is like. Still do your share of the cleaning or chores, respect personal boundaries (especially if cohabitating with the opposite sex), and be mindful of each other’s right to quiet enjoyment of your place. That way, they are bound to feel respected and they’ll try to respect you too
Read also : Tips On Living With Roommates
Maintaining A Good Relationship With The Roommate Of Different Culture
Here we conclude several keys to maintain a good relationship with cross-cultural housemate/roommate:
- ·Learn more about the culture and Communicate More
The key point is to communicate and spend time a lot. You have been instilled some values inside of you and you also have the desired to be respected and understood. Googling, read, ask lots of questions about their backgrounds, what are their values, what they like, and their dislikes. Talk and spend time together. It’s good to do research even before you ask but, to remind again there might be some unspoken cultures or values that you need to adapt and you will know if you both spend time together.
- Set Rules and Boundaries
Try to set rules and boundaries when you’re about to move in together or during a house agreement when you both first meet. Use that time wisely to decide the rules of living together and discuss both of the values, what will be okay between you two, and what is not. If you are not the kind of person who allows any opposite sex to enter your house tell them directly that you cannot tolerate it. But if there is the thing that you can still tolerate, for example, you will be okay if your roommate or housemate loosens a bit and having that drunk night once in a while. Mostly, if you both coming from the same ethnic or culture there will be no big adjustment. But, you will need to adapt more if your housemate or roommate happens to be totally different cultures from you.
Even if you both living together, you both need privacy and my time. It’s okay to set aside some time for yourself. You have to know your values and what you cannot tolerate. And vice versa. Leave some room for privacy. Respect their way of thinking and do not cross the line. Healthy boundaries including time, emotion, physical, and even things. What thing you may not willing to share. For example, even if you both close you are not comfortable if they come and barging to your room that’s okay to communicate it to them.
- Solve the Problems
You both coming from two different families who hold different values so it is very normal to come across disagreements or arguments. Forgive and don’t leave any conflict unresolved. Communicate and make sure not to hold any grudges. When you both discuss the conflicts or problems be cool-headed, still respect your roommate or housemate.
- Embrace Differences with Bonding
Try to respect the differences between you and your housemate/roommate. The good thing is you will be challenged to be more adaptable you will also learn how to be more tolerant and who knows your roommate or housemate can teach them about their cultures which will make you are rich knowledge. If they ask you for their cultural parties or celebrations, do not hesitate to come and celebrate with them. And you both can do the same. Invite them to your circle of friends if you start to feel comfortable. Connect as a way to learn more with each other.
After all, the adapting phase is a lifetime process. You will learn to adapt as long as you are still living together. Respect and communication are the main keys. It’s like stepping yourself outside of your comfort zone.
So there you have tips and tricks to live with a roommate that has a different culture than you. Every culture is unique but we are all human. There’s bound to be a middle ground that connects us all. We hope you bond more with your roommate! Don’t forget to check out other posts about roommates!