A few weeks ago during recruitment, I was chatting with some of my sorority sisters about our freshman year experience. Even though it was a mix of seniors, juniors, and sophomores, we all agreed on one thing: freshman year is hard. People go to college thinking it’s going to be this amazing experience right off the bat where you’ll have eight bajillion best friends, sixteen boyfriends and will be partying every night. That’s definitely not the case, and even if it looks like the girls you stalk on Instagram are having the time of their lives, they’re probably miserable every once and a while, too.
I don’t want to scare anyone. That’s definitely not my intention. However, I think it’s important to go into freshman year with a realistic expectation of what your first year of college will be like. I want to give you a little preview of what you might experience and how to overcome it!
I’m not meaning you’ll cry when your boyfriend breaks up with you, or when you’re stressed out about finals. I mean you’ll probably call your mom crying more than a handful of times in your first semester because Sally didn’t invite you to the pledge class dinner, or Steve didn’t invite you to Kappa Apple Pie’s fall formal. Or maybe you won’t know why you’re crying at all, but you just need to let it out. And that’s okay. Crying is normal. College is such a change of pace and it gets overwhelming. If you’re crying a lot, don’t assume you’re in the minority, because you’re not. I bet Gianna across the hall is crying on the phone with her mom, too.
Making Friends Will Be Hard
I was so sure I’d immediately have 600 BFFs the moment I pledged Kappa Alpha Theta. I was wrong. Bid Day was hands down one of the most awkward days of college because everyone is so excited but no one knows each other. You meet a thousand people and you can’t remember anyone’s name. You take pictures with girls in your pledge class pretending you’re already BFFs but you know Brittany is Stacy’s roommate so you assume she doesn’t want to be your BFF. It’s awkward, and to be honest, most of the first semester is. You don’t really know people. My advice? Put yourself out there. You have to be the one to small talk with people (even if you’re awkward as hell like I am). You have to join in as many events in your dorm and on campus as possible. It may feel awkward but the more you do it, the more people you’ll meet and the more comfortable you’ll be.
You’ll Miss Your High School Friends
Sometimes all of your high school friends go to one school and you go to another. You see their Instagrams, Snapchats and Facebook albums looking like they’re having the best year ever. You might start regretting your college decision. Don’t. You were the one who went out on a whim and got away from high school. Ashley is probably still dealing with drama from 8th grade with Brad and Molly is probably still trying to get in with the ‘cool squad.’ You’re not. You’re out of high school and out on your own. You may not think this yet, but you’re maturing light years faster than your friends. Facetime your friends, call them and text them, but don’t regret your decision to get away.
You Might Consider Transferring
Maybe you’ll think you’ll be happy if you’re back with those high school friends. Or maybe if you’re closer to home so your mom can cook your favorite food every weekend. Maybe you miss your boyfriend. Stay strong and know that you’re growing immensely as a person at your school and if you truly think you might want to transfer, stick it out until the end of freshman year and then consider a transfer. I truly don’t think you feel comfortable at college until you’re leaving and suddenly you’re sad to leave for the summer. That’s when you know if it’s a good fit or not.
Boys Are Still Dumb
Cliche, but true. You might think you’ll find your dream man the first week of college and you’ll date for four years and then he’ll propose to you in front of everyone at graduation. That’s probablyyyyy not gonna happen. Even as seniors in college, the boys still have a lot of growing up to do, so just imagine how immature they were freshman year. Don’t waste your tears over Tom who wouldn’t buy you a shot but bought Larissa a shot last night. Find a couple good guy friends who will be good to you and pick on you like brothers. As for romantic relationships: don’t settle.
To sum it all up: freshman year is hard. Life is hard. But you’ve heard the phrase, “A smooth sea never made for a skilled sailor,” and it holds true. College will shape you into who you are. It’s a roller coaster of emotions but it’s an amazing roller coaster. As a senior, I wish I could do it all over again. It’s hard to believe I’ll be an alum in less than a year. Freshmen, live it up. Do it for me, the old grandma that writes these posts and goes to bed at 10.
Going along with this, I want to help you. Feeling alone? Always feel free to email me, DM me, message me on my Facebook page, whatever you want. I was a freshman once, too, and I get it. Think it’s bigger than that? If you have any thoughts of suicide, please please call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255. They’ll get you the help you need.
Like always, I post a lot less during the school year. It sucks, but I need to have my priorities straight. I’ll post as much as I can, but head over to my Twitter to interact with me anytime! Have an awesome semester, everyone!