I made the decision not to rush my freshman year of college. I had a chance to really focus on school and adjust to new life before jumping into the Greek lifestyle, which at the University of Alabama is its own world. I went through recruitment and pledged Alpha Omicron Pi, which is exactly where I wanted to be. I couldn’t have been happier, and my sisters are my best friends in the world. I loved every second.
But a year later when I was on my sorority’s exec board, I was told about a nasty rumor that went around about me while I was coming through rush.
Rumor had it that I had an abortion.
Cue jaw dropping to the floor, right? Small pieces of the puzzle started coming together. I found out that the time I spent in the hospital for my pulmonary embolism was the prime opportunity for my archenemy from home to spread this rumor. Instead of sending me a message saying, “Hey I know we have our differences, but I’m glad you didn’t die,” she decided to lie to half of sorority row.
I never had an abortion, nor have I ever been pregnant. Even if I had, it wouldn’t be anyone’s business. Regardless of your stance on the topic, it shouldn’t be joked about. I’ve had other rumors spread about me, but this one took the cake.
Looking back, it made a lot of sense more why a few houses inexplicably dropped me. I wouldn’t have pledged them anyway because they weren’t my choices, but still. This rumor affected a serious part of my life. Again, I would have ended up at AOII no matter what. I know the truth, my friends know the truth, but there are still plenty of people that believe what she said is true even though it isn’t. I actually had one girl tell me she didn’t believe me, and that’s her prerogative.
I ran into the girl on campus a few times after I found out. Word got out that I knew what she did, so she promptly ran away each time. I wouldn’t have done anything, and I have nothing to say to her but she clearly knows what she did was really not okay.
Rumors are never good, but if it happens to you make sure to keep your head up. Don’t overreact to the rumor because then it looks like you’re being defensive. I knew if I made it into an even bigger deal than it already was, I would have made everything worse. By not really giving the rumor attention, I was able to let it fade out. And of course, knowing I had the support of my friends really helped me. I just had to grin and bear it.
Have you ever had a rumor spread about you? How did you handle it? Did you confront the person who started it? Tell me in the comments!