There is a metaphorical hump that everyone has to get over when going to college. I'm not talking about getting over homesickness. Yes, homesickness does happen and it does take a while for people to get over it (about a month), but I am talking about getting to the point where you feel completely comfortable in your new situation.
It doesn't sound that hard. You would think that once you get over missing home that you will feel comfortable in your new space and a new school. That isn't the case at all. In fact, I think that I have finally, halfway into my second semester mind you, gotten to the point where I am happy and comfortable with Illinois Wesleyan. I am not the only one. It takes a lot of people at least a semester to get to this point.
Some of my older readers might completely disagree with me. I'm sorry, guys, but you probably forgot most of it. I am already starting to forget what it felt like my first few weeks of class. That is okay. Part of the reason why I am writing this post is so that I don't forget it all.
Now, why is it so hard to transition?
1. Your room is small
You may not think that your room at home is very big. In fact, it might even have the same dimensions as your college dorm! The problem is you have to share it. The common first-year dorm is relatively small and probably a suitable size for one person. It sucks. Not only do you have to share the space with another person, but you also don't have a built in closet. The wardrobes and both sets of furniture are out in the open. It takes a lot of clever planning to optimize space. You're going to get irritated the first couple of weeks, even if you aren't claustrophobic. Just hang in there!
2. The food sucks
The food at college may seem great the first few weeks, especially in comparison to high school. However, there is little variety. The same meal every day gets really boring. The best thing you can do is try to alternate what foods you eat and where you buy your food. Also, have some snacks in your room and some microwave dinners, just in case you grow sick of grilled cheese and french fries. It is going to be rough, and you are going to miss your parent's home-cooked meals, but you will get used to it.
3. Your roommate is annoying
Living in the same room as someone is much different than living with your family in the house. With a roommate you share everything. It is going to get annoying. You are going to know all of their bad and disgusting habits. You are going to know if your roommate snores or talks in their sleep. The worst part is that you have to deal with their mood swings as well as your own. It will be rough, but if you try to be open to the experience, it gets better.
4. There is way to much homework
Remember how high school was super busy? Take how much homework you had then and multiply it by 10. That is how much homework you will have for college. I was seriously overwhelmed my first couple of weeks. I am a music major, so I also had to do ensembles on top of everything else. I lost 10 pounds my first two weeks of college because I couldn't find time to eat. Don't do that. Schedule and prioritize. Do your homework at any chance you get; you will feel much better. It takes a while to get into the swing of things, but you will soon sort out your schedule.
5. You are tired all the time
You are going to be tired whether you went to bed early or not. It sucks, but the work you do in college is very draining. The best you can do is try to get as much sleep as you can and sneak in a nap every now and then. Be warned, there will be loud drunk people coming in in the wee hours of the morning just about every day of the week. If that bothers you, buy ear plugs.
And, of course...
6. You miss your family, pets, and friends
You may think that your family is annoying, but you are going to miss them after a while. It is inevitable. The one thing I haven't gotten over is how much I miss my dogs. I wish that I could buy a lap dog to live with me in college. They relieve stress so well. Unfortunately, they don't allow dogs in the dorms and you don't have time for one any way. As for friends, try to keep in contact. You will be making a lot more friends here, so enjoy all your friends, new and old.
I hope this helps people adjust! Again, do not be discouraged! This rough patch of time passes by quickly. There is no reason why you shouldn't go to college and get a good education! It is all worth it in the end!
Also, just because you are struggling with the transition does not mean that the school is not the right one for you. Hang in there and you might figure out that there is no other place you would rather be.
Did I miss any difficulties that comes with college life? Let me now! Tell me about your transition problems!