Dear Snarky – My Daughter’s Dorm Roommate’s Mother Has Moved in

Dear Snarky,

I’m very confused and upset over a situation my daughter is going through. She’s a freshman in college and is living in the dorm with one roommate. Both my daughter and her roommate went through sorority recruitment almost two weeks ago. My daughter got into a sorority but her roommate didn’t.

The girl was so upset by this that her mother came to the see her and for a WEEK has been staying with her daughter in the dorm room and sleeping in the same bed!

My daughter is about to lose it. Here she is starting college with the mother of her roommate living with them. My daughter says the roommate is going to class every day and seems fine but the mom shows no signs of leaving. 

I told my daughter to talk to the RA on her floor but she’s hesitant to do that because she says she’s afraid of the mom whom she calls “Very Karen.”

I know a mother living in the dorm is probably against all kind of rules but how can my daughter get rid of her without living in fear that the woman is going to go after her.

Signed, Worried 

Dear Worried,

Yikes, of all the things you worried about in regard to sending your child off to college I bet a roommate’s mother living in the dorm room didn’t make your list. That said, you are correct the mom bunking with her daughter for a week is absolutely not allowed and I’m sure it violates a university’s housing contract.

I also think a student R.A. is not the solution. It’s going to take a seasoned adult and by that I mean a university employee with some gravitas to extricate this mother. So, I suggest your daughter contacts both the R.A. and the Dean of Students (via email and in person) immediately with the issue and include that she’s a little afraid of the mom.

Now, I totally understand a mother being concerned enough about her daughter to come and check on her. But she can’t just live in the dorm. If her daughter’s mental health is currently so fragile that she needs her mom with her 24/7 then perhaps it’s time for some therapy and/or a delayed start to her freshman year.

I also have a feeling that the mom might be the one that needs help since it appears she can’t bear to leave her daughter and has no problem sharing a twin bed with her in a freaking DORM for seven days.

But none of that is any of your daughter’s business. The only thing she needs to do is get this mama out of the dorm room. I suggest you stay behind the scenes helping and only involve yourself if a quick resolution isn’t forthcoming. And by quick, I mean less than 24 hours. 

Sorry, not sorry, but if my 18-year-old was in this situation I wouldn’t be playing “you’re an adult now and I’m not going to be helicopter parent” card. This is weird with a capital W and might (as in probably will) require some very adult assistance.

Good Luck!


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