The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper


4 min read

By KJ Adler

Every day I am grateful that I am no longer in a dorm room.
You can blame the only child thing, you can blame my introvert nature, but really I think it’s just plain unnatural when two people who barely know each other are forced to share a room that is no bigger than a movie star’s walk-in closet.
Now, I am going to get very honest with you readers this week and I want you to realize that I am not taking this confession lightly: I was a horrible roommate.
It’s true. With both of my roommates I was pretty much an ass who lost interest in my roommate’s feelings by week two.
Why am I revealing this personality flaw to you? So that I can reveal to you a few rules about the etiquette some idiots, like myself, didn’t learn until it was much too late in the game.
I am talking about, of course, dorm room sex etiquette. Some of these I had learned on my own, some I had heard from other friends, but overall I can promise you that these are real rules, developed by real students here at Mary Washington.
So read them well, commit them to memory and for the love of Zeus please practice them.
There will be a lot less tension in the room and a lot less cringing when you think back on your initial sexual escapades during the dorm days.

1. Don’t screw around with your sweetheart when the roommate is there.
This should be a big ‘ol “duh” factor for most of you kids. But honestly when you really want to get it on and you can’t find any other place to do it, sometimes you find yourselves snuggling in your bed, your roomie “asleep,” hands go places and before you know it you’re shoving a pillow in your face to keep it down. I can promise you that nine times out of ten you may think the roommate’s asleep but he/she is not. Don’t put the roommate in that uncomfortable position. If the fever is just too hot to cool then just hide in a study room or bathroom or some other place. Too public for you? Well it’s still in public when you’re doing it in front of the roommate.

2. Just tell your roomie if there is a special someone in the room with you when the roommate is out.
We have these newfangled things called cell phones. Just call him/her up if they aren’t in the room and tell them to walk around for a half hour or so. Even better, what ever happened to the tie system? Leave a tie on the door, roommates beware! Whatever the technique, let them know. The last thing that anyone wants is for you to be caught with your drawers around your ankles. Unless you’re into that sort of thing, in which case there are way more issues at hand then proper roommate etiquette.

3. Throw away the used ones.
You just did your thing and you’re feeling for a nap and a sandwich. For those who live alone, no problem. For those with a roommate, you still have a bit of work to do. Clean up after yourselves. The last thing the roommate needs to deal with is any unexpected “surprises” when they get back. Hide the panties, hide the condoms and hide the whipped cream. It’s their room too.

4. Don’t do it on your roommate’s bed.
Never ever ever ever! I don’t care if you two are in an incredibly passionate moment, banging into everything, trying every possible place and position in that small cubicle of a room. The roommate’s section is sacred and if they are giving you the courtesy of having the place to yourself for a few hours, the least you can do is keep the dirtiness off of their stuff. And if you do try it, I promise you they will either walk in or know that it happened.

5. If you shower together, lock the doors.
It’s always a special bond when you and your suitemates make it to that point where you can casually walk in while one is taking a shower and the other needs to relieve themself. The last thing the latter person needs to hear is another voice in the shower. Then it’s just awkward for all parties involved. Lock the door or tell them not to come in when you hear their door open. Sure, it’s awkward for them to be kicked out of the bathroom, but that’s much better than using the toilet and hearing hanky panky right next to them.

These rules just skim on the plethora of regulations you need to put yourself under if you don’t want to geek your roommate out of ever wanting to live with someone again. However you choose to use these suggestions, most importantly talk it out with the roommate. Communication is key.
Otherwise the tension just becomes suffocating.