During high school I won’t whine and say I didn’t have friends, because I did.I had close friends throughout most of college, and even though it changed and fluctuated like any high school social life did, it was present. It just wasn’t a big thing. I wasn’t part of the popular crowd and I’ve always been shy and afraid of rejection. I attached to one specific group of friends and as wonderful as they were for the most part, it was a mistake on my behalf to isolate myself to one group or just a few select people. It left me alienated when they weren’t there and when I felt like the friendship was no longer as strong as it had been. Which is hard as a high school student with social issues anyway. Because it means I have no real support system outside my family and boyfriend. And my boyfriend does wonders. He’s the most effective form of support I have. But there are some things I have to discuss with other people. Girl stuff or bitch about him or whatever the case may be. And honestly, I didn’t have that in some of my junior and most of my senior year of college. I just floated in a sort of limbo and coasted by living for the weekends. Not to be melodramatic or anything, but honestly the high school social scene was pretty crude. If you drank, did drugs,anything, it was aggressive. It was getting trashed to get trashed and being mean and intense and forceful. It’s something that I wasn’t comfortable with; I wanted to have fun, but I didn’t want to risk myself in doing so. And thus, I focused on my education so that I could go to college with financial support. Which meant I never really hung out with people outside of school, and I didn’t even really socialize on more than an acquaintance-level with many people in a school context.
College started. The first few weeks were pretty awesome. I became friends with a lot of people in little time, and already felt like part of a community. It’s true that I don’t necessarily have a “bff” or whatever yet. But you know what? I’m okay with that. I want to try friendships in a new and different way. I want to push myself. I have a lot of people that I feel comfortable talking to, hanging out with, and asking for help from. If one person is gone, or even if one group is gone, I still have others. I haven’t isolated myself.
And last night…last night was the perfect example of how amazing college has been for my social life. I’m not going into details. But my roommate welcomed me with open arms to join her and her friends for a sort of low-key “party” hang out in her room. I felt closer and more cared for by those people than I have by half the people that were in my group of friends in high school. I felt incredibly comfortable, wanted, at ease and included. And I had just met those people that night. And I talked to them, and I hugged them, and I said things and danced and swayed and did things I could never see myself doing. I felt safe, though. I felt like everyone was dependable, and that everyone was there for one another. There’s definitely a strong, sincere bond between these people, and I felt included in it. I became part of their group, I became someone they trusted, someone they enjoyed having around, etc. And maybe it was just that first-time-meeting high, but it was still pretty amazing. And even if it’s an isolated event, but I don’t feel like it is, it was literally the best time I’ve had with a group of people in a very long time. Where I felt completely at ease. I had fun. I was included. I didn’t feel like an outsider easily forgotten.
That’s what college has been for me.