10 Surprising Things That Happen During The First Week Of College

The first week of college (for a freshman) is a weird one. Classes haven’t gone into full swing just yet and everyone’s trying to figure each other out, attempting to make new best friends for good Instagram pictures, and looking for their future crush/potential hookup/future bae. On top of that, everyone is constantly lost and trying to find the best routes to class so they’re not always late, while also looking for the best food in the various cafeterias. It’s almost an out-of-body experience that can be seriously overwhelming, which leads to some surprising situations that no one really tells you about. Everyone teaches you how to act in college classes, but socially? You’re left to your own devices.

So, a lot can happen during your very first week of being a legit college student. I know seven days doesn’t sound like a long time, but it can definitely feel like one, especially when you’re homesick and nervous. Unless you came from a boarding school you lived at, this kind of environment is going to be completely new for you. That’s totally okay, and you won’t be alone, but I think you should know what to expect to make your experience as great as it can be – or at least you can be prepared for the sucky stuff. Here are some surprising things that happen during the first week of college: 


You Won't Poop

It's a weird phenomenon that happens! I don't know why no one talks about it. I blame dining hall food and the right combination of stress and new situations. Bring laxatives. You might need them to get your system back to normal. Even if you don't, you'll recallibrate eventually, but in the meantime you're going to have an uncomfortable first week or two. Don't say I didn't warn you.

Source: iStock

You Reinvent Yourself In A Small Way

This is the best part about college! These people didn't grow up with you! You have so much more room to be who you really are! Even small switches like going by Kimberly instead of Kim will feel mildly revolutionary. Get a drastic haircut - no one remembers you with the old one. Change up your style - no one's expecting anything different from you. It's no shock that most people come out in college whether it's in regards to your gender or sexuality: it's undeniable that college gives you a certain amount of autonomy and freedom to be who you really are and that's something to get excited about. Again, it doesn't have to be drastic. Small changes can do wonders for self image, too.

Source: iStock

You Get Naked In Front Of Your Roommate

Trying to change in front of your roommate in a modest way is going to get real old real fast. I'm not saying that you'll suddenly become an exhibitionist, but the first time your towel slips after the shower or your bra malfunctions when you're facing a mirror it won't be the end of the world. At first of course it'll be surprising, then you'll get used to it. Get ready to get comfortable with this new person real fast. You're going to see their boobs, they'll definitely seey our butt on more than one occasion. It's really just par for the course.

Source: iStock

You Return Most Of Your Textbooks

Everybody! Check your course syllabus and then buy your books. Nothing sucks more than dropping a few hundred dollars on a book only to find out that you'll be using it for one reading after midterms. Find out what you'll need from each book before you buy. If it's a one time only situation, run and scan those pages to the library then return the book. It's not worth dropping serious cash on books without relaly knowing what you're getting into. Most bookstores don't return at the price you asked, so for real, hold off on buying your books if you don't want to make a three hundred dollar mistake.

Source: iStock

You Make A New Best Friend

In high school, it can take years to develop a best friendship with someone. You and your home besties probably grew up together! College is a bit different. Everyone is looking for friends, everyone is looking for a BFF replacement, and everyone is desperate to do that ASAP. You'll find someone to tell all your secrets to and they'll open up to you too. Suddenly, you have a new best friend. Where did that come from? It might feel too soon for using this label, but this is perfectly normal. Don't worry about this friendship betraying your old friendships back home. They'll understand - they probably even made a new college best friend themselves.

Source: iStock

You Get Completely Lost

Getting lost on or off campus doesn't matter, they're both equally terrifying. Don't panic. Your professors will (probably) forgive you for being late in the beginning, and most of us have smart phones with Google maps. People are generally kind and will help you find your way. It's okay to be scared, but just take a second and ask for help if you need it. Getting lost is an important step in being more comfortable in a new environment and finding your way. Don't freak out. It happens to literally everybody, especially during the first week of college.

Source: iStock

You Already Realize How Hard It Is To Stay In Touch

Before you leave for college, you and your high school besties are full of promises and plans to talk all the time. You swear you'll always be on the phone together, setting up visits, and texting. But it becomes pretty clear pretty quickly that this is a lot harder than you think. Sure, maybe you'll be texting, but between parties, getting adjusted, and meeting new people, you realize how much busier you are than you thought... and you feel guilty about it. Don't! It's normal. But do come up with more doable plans of staying in touch that work for both of you.

Source: iStock

You Accidentally Hang Out With A Different Crowd

College is all about making new friends in the beginning and finding your tribe of weirdos you can really relax and be yourself with. There's nothing like committing to a group hang, though, and having them all wind up being totally different than the kind of people you usually hang with. Whether they don't align with your politics, sense of humor, or they're just plain boring, you will find yourself in a social situation with all the wrong people and struggle with how to escape in a tactful way. Just be polite and don't burn any bridges on the way out - you never know who's going to wind up in a group project with you. You don't have to be friends with everyone you meet in college and not everyone's compatable with each other.

Source: iStock

You're... Bored

Picture this: your parents leave you in your dorm room, it's just you and your roommate, and you both just sit there. College is full of new opportunities and endless possibilities, but sometimes that's the exact problem. There are so many options! You might just kick it in your room and watch Netflix. No shame in that (maybe a little shame). You're for sure going to get bored for no real reason and maybe feel a little bad about it. Just be bored. You'll find something to do eventually.

Source: iStock

You Might Reconsider Your Major

Freshman year, most of your classes are going to be typically boring and introductory. More likely than not, your schedule will be full of general educaiton requirements not in your major. However, if the classes in your major don't make you excited in one way or another, something might be up. Admittedly, they save most of the fun stuff for upperclassmen, but if what hte juniors and seniors are doing daily doesn't seem like something you want to do anyway, you might want to actually reconsider your major. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if the work just seems difficult, don't sweat it. College is for learning. You'll get there eventually. Doubts are normal, but if they're real serious, switch now while you still can.

Source: iStock

What do you want to happen the first week of college? What do you wish you could avoid? Let us know in the comments!

You can follow the author, Aliee Chan, on Twitter.

 

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