So I recently started college 1 week ago. I go to a small state school with about 5000 undergraduates. Despite all the freshman welcome week events I went to, I’m really struggling to even keep acquaintances around. I know I can’t expect friends in a week, but everyone I talk to seems to ghost me or ignore me after a day or two.
I go to a commuter school (only about 800 people dorm), yet almost everyone I run into is a resident. I find that most residents seem to look down on commuters, which I find to be very immature. We have an app for the school to communicate, and almost every day, people make posts straight up bashing on commuters and their professors (not sure why the school has done nothing about this). Even if a resident is nice to me, they are automatically less interested in speaking to me and tend to ignore me after a bit. They care more about meeting people in the dorms rather than trying to get to know me at all.
Besides that, I find most freshmen at my school to be social climbers. One of my classes is for freshmen only, and in that class, people will ignore me or straight up call me boring. Most of the girls in that class are dressed like they’re going to a fashion show, curl their hair, and wear a lot of makeup, but I just wear a hoodie and leggings to class. Don’t get me wrong, I’m perfectly fine with girls dressing like that because I do too outside of classes, but this is only a problem because the girls in my class sort of jump between talking to people until they find the “prettiest” or “most interesting” person. People will talk to me for a couple minutes, then look across the room, walk over to another girl, say she’s so pretty and cool, and ask for her Snapchat. It also genuinely hurts me because once I was sitting in a group where one girl called everyone pretty and amazing, then when she looked at me, she laughed and said nothing. I thought me and another girl were getting along well, until all of a sudden a group of fancier dressed girls passed by. Then she began to completely ignore me and only followed those girls around. A lot of times, even if I ask for people’s Snapchat, they will ignore my snaps or never open them. I also get ignored when I see people in the hallway and say hi. No one seems down to earth at this school. I’m also not the only person this happens to… there’s a few international students in my class, and whenever they try to talk to people, they get laughed at for their accents. Whenever I spoke to them, they seemed to be really nice, but no one else gives them a chance because they’d rather turn around and find the coolest person in the room. There are also one or two other girls in my class who show up in sweatpants and a hoodie and literally no one speaks to them. One of those girls is a resident so some people talk to her briefly, but that’s about it. This only happens in my discussion based classes. And frankly, I don’t want to be friends with people who are only interested in appearances anyway, I’m just not sure how to find the right people.
I know people will say the best way to make friends is to go to parties, but I hate partying and my college also has harsh fines for doing so. Any parties get broken up immediately and if you’re caught drinking, it’s a $900 fine. If you’re caught drinking again, you will be expelled. Same for any drug use. I do plan on joining clubs to meet people more like me. Our club fair is next week, so I’m really hoping that works out. If anyone has any other advice, please comment here. I had no issue making friends in high school or at my job, so not sure why this is happening now. I always make an effort to talk to people first and give genuine compliments. When I talked some other people about this, they said these girls are treating it like it’s 13th grade - which is kind of true. It’s just hard to find my niche.
Wow this sounds more like middle school than 13th grade. I understand how hard it is and hate to repeat what you have already said yourself: it’s only been a week. You will find your people but it may take a few months, even into the next year. Try to be patient. I know it’s hard.
Do they have a center for commuters to use lockers, and hang out? I would focus on other commuters if you can, and once you are in classes or activities you will meet people with similar interests.
Where I live, sweatpants and hoodies would be the cool thing- not trying too hard is cool. Not sure where you are but just to say, culture varies. Hang in there!
Have you approached these girls?
DD’19 made most of her friends doing theatre. Hope one or more clubs helps too. Hang in there!
This is a good idea.
What about recreational sports teams? Even if you aren’t good at a sport, you might have the opportunity to learn something new, and so meet people who have similar interests.
Also, what about the international students? Do they have cultural events/activities where you might be able to participate and meet people?
It’s not entirely clear to me from your comments, but am I correct in thinking that you are female? Do I correctly conclude from your comments that you are a commuter student and do not live on campus?
Be patient, it will come. You should definitely look into clubs that interest you and maybe look to see if there are volunteer opportunities on campus (or even a PT job). I was a commuter student as well.
Outside of dorms (which doesn’t apply to you), the best place to make friends is in clubs, not parties. It also sounds like you could make friends with some of the international students.
Here are ideas:
I truly think it’s much harder to make friends as a commuter, it’s slower. In the dorms, friendships form quickly, like pledging a sorority or boot camp. I lived in a dorm for 4 years. However, I commented for graduate school and made friends with commuters (which most of us were). Definitely get involved in clubs and other activities.
Yes, absolutely approach the other girls who dress like you. Way back when I was in college at a large public university, I would go into a large class, search for another girl who looked nice and was sitting alone, and go sit next to her. I met some good friends that way. Good luck!
One thing I told my kids is to be yourself and others will follow. Get involved in things you enjoy. Music, Theater, dance etc. Backstage hands in theater are really great kids overall if that’s your thing BTW.
Yes, make friends with whoever will attempt to be your friend. Kids that look like you or not.
Also there might be a Facebook group fork your school. Over the summer I saw a girl that posted she wanted to play tennis or go for a walk with someone but a girl and that she was bored and didn’t know anyone. She had multiple people reaching out saying “I not good at tennis but I will try” many got together just because others were in the same situation…
Absolutely join clubs, activities that interest you. There is always someone Taller, shorter, prettier, has more or less money etc. You don’t need superficial friends. Most times it’s just eating together or studying together with someone. Going on a walk or hike etc.