Ask Someone Else's Mom by Susan Writer

Perpetually Partying Roommates Makes Studying Impossible for Master’s Candidate

DEAR SOMEONE ELSE’S MOM: I’m in the final stretch of my master’s program. I went back to school for my degree, and am the only one in a group of five roommates renting a house who’s still in school. I also work fulltime, like they do, but I just don’t have the time or the interest in partying every weekend and one or two nights during the week like they do. They think I’m a dud, but I’m just trying to get some work done.

I’ve tried going to coffee shops and fast food places that are open late, but I need to spread out my materials sometimes. My program is all on-line, through an all on-line school, so there isn’t any kind of library or study hall, and the local libraries here are only open late once a week and are more like community centers than libraries on weekends.

I’ve tried asking my roommates to take it elsewhere, at least once in a while, but they pull the, “We pay rent, so we can hangout whenever we want.” Seems they forget I pay rent too!

I’m looking for suggestions of how to survive these next few months without losing my mind. --- NEED SOME QUIET

DEAR NEED SOME QUIET: With the growth of all on-line programs, I’d bet you’re far from alone in having to scramble for study space. Through the years I’ve known other adults, many with children, who’ve gone back to school for their degrees. They too had to find a way to get through their course loads with a steady supply of distractions.

Since your roommates aren’t shy about telling you they pay rent for the house, you need to remind them that you contribute your share as well. That should entitle you to at least an occasional patch of quiet ─ or quieter ─ time during the week.

If you haven’t yet, you might also want to see if any of the libraries in your town offer study rooms you can reserve on a regular basis. That would give you more space to spread out, and less noise to deal with, even during the library’s busier times.

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