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Social Life at University

When it comes to university, the main thing that was least
like I expected was the social life. Looking back, I think my expectations were
unrealistic, and on my video about social life at uni someone commented that
I’d been too negative talking about the whole thing. I thought that university
would be less cliquey. I assumed that because we’d all made the move from
school, and we’d all got passed the age where we were told what to do that we’d
be a little more mature about the whole thing.
This isn’t to say
that people at university were immature.
People naturally form into groups. They find people;
gravitate towards those who they have an affinity with, those who are into the
same things as them. It’s just a natural part of being human. For some reason,
I’d expected university to be less like this. A huge menagerie of people, most
of whom got on, chatted to everyone and didn’t seal themselves off into groups.
My social experience at university wasn’t awful. I’ve come
away from university with a handful of really good friends and I’ve come to
realise that I’ll probably never be one of those people that has huge groups of
friends. I like the intimacy that comes with having close friends, and I’ve realised
throughout the last three years that I’m quite picky about who I let in anyway.
What’s passed has passed, but if I was to go back and change
how I acted at university I’d probably do the following:
Halls

The people in my halls were nice enough but they we didn’t
really have very much in common and although I was amicable with them I never
really felt the urge to make more of an effort with them. I always knew that
Matt and I were going to move in together in my second year, but had this not
been the case I would have moved to a different halls. Being in the city centre
was great but I was quite a bit away from Fallowfield, which is where pretty
much everyone on my course lived (and most of Manchester’s students).
Societies

Although I’m not amazing at any sports, and don’t have any
particular hobbies that rule my life, I do think I should have made more of an
effort at joining a society. Matt had a whole wealth of friends on the rugby
team, and he also was captain in 3rd year (good for his cv). By not
being part of any society I missed out on the friends and the opportunities
that come with being part of one. I never really made much of an effort looking
into the different societies, and instead turned to my blog and made friends
all over the country through it. I never regret moving online to look for those
with similar interests (as I found two of my best friends Dionne and Brogan through it), but I do wish that I’d pushed myself to start something new and
meet new people.
Friendships

When I wrote this post I was quite low. I’d fallen
out with my group of girl friends at university and felt really lost. The
fall-out (although small now in retrospect) upset me quite deeply, and made me
go into my shell rather than out of it. I’m by no means shy, but after falling
out with people I thought were my best friends, I became quite insular and
quiet in the last half of my second and my full third year. In retrospect I
should have just got over it and pushed myself to chat to new people but I
spent too much time feeling sorry for myself, and looking back I stopped myself
from being myself – if that makes sense! Now I’ve left university I feel a huge
sense of relief, and feel like I can actually be myself again. I’ve spent too
long worrying about what people think about me, and have missed out on valuable
time. Whilst I’m not 100% sure of myself, I’m getting to know what kind of
person I really am now which is refreshing, and something I think most people
go through at various times in their life.

Whilst I probably reflect on my social life at university
too much, I don’t want to be mistaken for being negative about my time at
university. I let myself down by choosing to be insular, and I wouldn’t want
someone else to make the same mistake. Brush yourself off and get yourself out
there, otherwise you’ll just end up feeling like you wasted those valuable uni
years!

No Comments

  • Carly

    October 7, 2013 at 5:49 pm

    It's funny, I always thought that after making the transition into adulthood, most people would be a lot more mature and understanding of other people – but honestly, I think adults can be just as petty about all sorts of strange things! Obviously people are going to form groups etc, and I think that's great but a lot of the time I feel that people won't really give others a chance or something – I don't really know what I'm trying to say now! Also, sometimes I feel like certain friendships are often forced upon people just because they are in the same class/job etc, when like you said, sometimes people just don't have that much in common. I think a great sign of maturity is being able to be amiable and polite to people even if you aren't particularly great friends. Really interesting post <3 xxx

    Reply
  • Laura Gois

    October 7, 2013 at 5:49 pm

    I had quite a negative experience with university – ended up moving out of my private halls in first year and found that, despite being really chatty with people on my course, nobody really made an effort once they'd found a 'group'. I definitely wish I'd made the effort to join a society too! xx
    http://www.LaurasHaven.com

    Reply
  • Naffy

    October 7, 2013 at 5:49 pm

    I can really relate to this as I feel I did similar things and although I would do things differently I would let people in a bit more. I think I had just been hurt a lot and was afraid to let anyone see anyone see me vulnerable.

    Great post lovely.

    Nafisah xx

    Reply
  • Palindrome Poppet

    October 7, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Ahh it is so refreshing to hear the same words come out of someone else's mouth! I'm finding it is a lot more of a common problem than people talk about. At least we can learn and grow from these experiences 🙂 xx

    Reply
  • hannah Louisa

    October 7, 2013 at 6:25 pm

    I'm at uni in manchester & I'd love to live in the centre instead of fallowfield! I'm retaking a year because I was ill & I've already noticed the cliqueyness ( I read your post on friends too) now I don't know anyone on the course. Really enjoyed reading this post!xx

    Reply
  • Palindrome Poppet

    October 7, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    Hi lovely, good luck! 🙂 I think the best thing to do is just push yourself because when I did chat to people I found a lot of them were really nice. 🙂 If you ever need a chat over a slice of pie and tea just let me know! 🙂 xx

    Reply
  • the novice blogger

    October 7, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    Ah very relateable post! I was put into a flat of 18 girls in my first year and dreaded the reality of it! Needless to say about 9 of us got along, but there weren't any scrap fights thank god! I only really began to form close friendships in 3year, when I'd been living with a lovely group of girls for a while and I'd gotton to know more people on my course.
    I think there's a lot of pressure with comments batted around like 'University is where you form your friendships'. To a certain extent this may be right as there is a big pool of people to get along with, but am happy that I have a couple of small friendships rather than a whole host of people I wouldn't be so close with. I totally agree about societies – to be honest I was in one, they actually require a lot of time investment so I think it's good to pick a couple and stick with them rather than join everything at first and go to none of them (which Is what I think everyone does)! Cute blog will definitely look into more of your posts!

    Reply

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