Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Post - Athens, OH
The independent newspaper covering campus and community since 1911.
The Post

Blabby Abby: Making friends in college is hard

The spring semester during my first year of college was seriously a drag. I remember it being very difficult for me socially. I spent a lot of time evaluating my friendships and found it extremely difficult to make new ones. 

Entering my second spring semester, I anticipated the same feelings. I was quickly proven wrong and feel the friends I have made this year are the ones I sought. These are the lifelong friendships people talk about in movies and the ones your parents would lecture you about during their "glory days."

It got me seriously questioning some things about my first year of college. I went into it expecting it was like kindergarten with 18-year-olds: you can walk up to anyone and become best friends. I was told to get involved with multiple organizations and chat with people in class while learning the basics of being on my own. 

This eventually got stressful. I was trying to navigate this new chapter of adult life, and I had several very surface-level friendships that weren't satisfying. 

A study done in 2020 found that 70% of people don't find it "easy" to make friends.

This confirmed my feelings, but I worried I would lose the opportunity to make friends if I didn't jump on it in my first year. I had it stuck in my mind that I wouldn't make friends after freshman year. Boy, was I wrong and silly for that idea— a true overthinker at work. 

Many people I know have made these friendships through Greek Life, which is a great option for certain people but not a feasible or ideal option for many others. Joining Greek Life can cost between $1,000 and almost $5,000 per semester. It can also be intimidating for some, especially in their first year. While some jump right in, taking a year to determine whether Greek Life is right for you can be super beneficial.

This year, it has proven to be significantly easier to get along with people and put effort into my social life. 

Because I've had a year to grasp the ropes of college life and learn how it works, this year, I can focus more on strengthening bonds with people. I've had the time to insert myself into the organizations I'm a part of and I have a better understanding of who I want to become better friends with and who I want to avoid. 

This year, people are more recognizable and easier to approach. Everything isn't super new, and it's easier to navigate feelings and wants from the people I surround myself with. Freshman year was full of trial and error, but this year has felt much smoother in the friendship department. 

My first year felt strangely dream-like in terms of socializing with people. It felt like I should introduce myself to everyone and try to befriend them. It landed me in what felt like an unnatural and awkward way of socializing, and as a more introverted person, it quickly made me feel self-conscious. 

It's a good idea to talk to people and introduce yourself, and if you meet your best friend, fantastic. If not, you can focus on yourself, and you'll be surprised how much you learn about yourself and what you might want in a friendship. 

I had one too many instances last year where I felt lonely while surrounded by people, and I feared that feeling wouldn't go away. But fear not, fellow introverts, because believe it or not, your parents are right. It does, in fact, get easier. 

During the first year, focus on school, getting acclimated and finding your niche. Find a few organizations, but don't make your social life the number one priority. It's super easy to get caught up in finding the perfect best friend, but everyone is getting started – just like you. Everything is going to work out in the end. College can sometimes feel extremely lonely, but remember, it is never too late to make friends.

Abby Jenkins is a sophomore studying journalism at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnist do not reflect those of The Post. What are your thoughts? Let Abby know by tweeting her @abbyjenks18 or emailing her at

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2016-2024 The Post, Athens OH