I’m in a sorority at the University of Maryland College Park. And I can honestly say that I only have three true friends at college: Caroline, Liza and Mary. Only one of them is in my sorority. We became friends after living together in one of the sorority house dorm rooms three semesters after rushing.
Sororities never really appealed to me. Growing up, I watched movies and TV shows where the sorority girls seemed extremely girly, bitchy and fake. In real life, or at least in my sorority, the girls are nothing like this. Yet I still have, trouble connecting to them.
I decided to rush my second semester of sophomore year. The rushing process sucked. The whole time I wished that sororities chose their new pledge class in a similar way to frats: rushes go to their preferred frat house and party with the brothers. Partying with a frat allows the rushes to get to know the members more naturally.
With sororities, however, every girl is expected to look her most perfect. You need to paint your nails, style your hair and wear fashionable clothing. You cannot talk about booze, boys, frats or bars. I still don’t understand why.
Basically, forced conversations are the main event. It all feels uncomfortable.
Random girls were crying all around me after each round of rush just because a “top-tier” sorority dropped them. It made me really upset to see all of these nice people feeling insecure because one sorority made a difficult decision between choosing them and another girl.
No one can even tell whether a girl would “fit in” or not just from one conversation, but unfortunately that’s the way the system works.
After the rushing process, I consistently went out with my sorority sisters. I’m talking about every single social and bar tab event. I became sort of close to a few girls, but then those friendships eventually faded. New connections kept coming and going. I think that everyone in the sorority already found their tight-knit group of friends, so it was difficult for me to get close to any of them. It also did not help that I was a sophomore at the time while everyone else was a freshman.
Three semesters later, I still don’t know every single name in my pledge class. When I walk around the house, I politely say “hey” to girls, but that’s pretty much the extent of our relationship. I am always outgoing at the social events, but still, there is some sort of wall up between me and the others.
Living in the house is not terrible, but it does make me realize even more how uninvolved I am. To me, if I don’t have any friends in my sorority and no one really talks to me, then why attend the meetings or events anymore? I only want to participate in the fundraisers now.
Reading this probably makes you think ,“Damn, that’s sad.” But honestly I don’t mind anymore. I realized this semester that I am not the only one who ended up in this outsider position. My current roommate also feels the same way. The first night living in the house, I shared a real conversation with her. She explained her troubles finding friends to me. We connected because we had something in common.
So many other girls have also dropped out of my sorority because they would rather hang out with their non-Greek life friends than with their “sisters.” If you feel like you’re the only one not fitting in at your sorority, you’re not alone.
My advice about Greek life: Please do not take it too seriously.
It’s not a big deal if you don’t find friends through Greek life. Most of my friends either never rushed or joined a different sorority—besides my roommate, of course.
Does this bother me? It did at first a little, but now I just don’t really care.
My university offers over 800 clubs and organizations. I personally never got involved in any organizations other than my sorority, but I know people who absolutely love the friends they met through their club. If you don’t have time to join one, try talking to people in your classes or people in your dorm hallway. I made many of my friends through people I already know
Now I understand that you don’t need Greek life to find friends or fun at college.
I’ve decided that this is my last semester in my sorority. Frat parties, bars and the opportunity to make new friends will still be available to me. So why waste my time on an expensive social club where I don’t fit in?