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Just THINKING about going back to college in a few weeks is giving me a mild panic attack. I just have this really bad feeling that it's going to suck, that I'm going to end up alone and feeling like a loser. Again.

 

What's totally pathetic is that my main problem is that I don't want to have to go to the dining hall and eat dinner alone. I would rather skip dinner than eat dinner alone in public (or in my room). But I also really want to eat dinner. Which leads to my anxiety. I used to be really scared of being alone in any public situation, so I've actually improved greatly -- this is the only thing I still get panicky about.

 

I have no idea what to do. The people at my college are really clique-y. I was in 2 "cliques" last year, but 1 of them contains my now ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend, and the other contains this guy who makes my life a living hell. So I doubt I'll be eating dinner with either of those groups ever again.

 

I could try finding new friends in my dorm, only I doubt that's going to happen. Everyone's already in cliques and groups. I feel like I'm basically screwed, that no one's going to want to hang out with me. I can't stop shaking. I just keep thinking about how I'm going to end up sitting in my room, alone and hungry.

 

I don't even know what I'm asking for advice on. I'm just hoping that someone will have something to say that'll make me stop feeling like I'm going to cry.

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Aww, I totally sympathize. I had a hard time making friends in college and felt like everyone was already in cliques.

 

I loved my dinner situation though. Going alone gave me so much freedom! First of all, it took less time than eating with a group, so I had more time for other things. I also didn't have to coordinate with other people and could go as early or as late as I wanted. I could take my sweet time getting my food without making people wait for me, or I could grab it quickly without having to wait for people. It was wonderful!

 

I also noticed that after the first month or so, more and more people started coming to dinner alone. It definitely doesn't look weird if you do, especially when the dining hall just opens and there's hardly anybody there! I've also had people approach me and ask me if they could sit with me -- it was a good way to get to know new people!

 

As far as making friends in general...strike up conversations in your classes, because having a class together automatically gives you something in common. Make plans to study together (even over dinner!), etc. Clubs are also helpful -- they give you something to do, you get to meet people, and you get to enjoy an activity that you like!

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Hi Haven,

 

I had this problem my second year of University. Like laboheme says, you can eat quicker when you are by yourself. I would sometimes take books or notes with to the dining hall so i could read while eating, that way I felt like I wasn't as noticeable. I suffer from social anxiety, so I totally understand the panic attacks and fear of not having a "group". All I can say is that you are not alone, and you will get through this. Take it one day at a time I guess and see how daring you feel on a given day. Perhaps you can be the one to join someone sitting by him/herself.

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Hi Haven,

 

Looks like you miss being in a group but really fear to be looked at as an outsider.

 

The purpose of being in a group is to share common interests, it is not a mandatory way of life.

 

Be a little more concerned about yourself and in particular about your self esteem. Think about (write if you like) what you do not like about yourself and resolve that.

 

Also think about what you do like about yourself and what you want to do and focus on that.

 

Wicked contains quite a few things which will help you grow.

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Hi Haven,

 

Don't worry, you will eventually find your own group of friends.

 

Let say in a class senario, you could try to approach people who seat alone. If in a party senario, try to approach people who is alone. They are more likely to talk to you.

 

Besides, I am sure in college new year, there sure to have new comers who does not have friends here yet.

 

Anyway, being alone is also not bad at all. You could do whatever you want.

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