The Loneliness of School

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I’m not sure if anyone is still reading this but I thought ‘What the hell? I just put it out there anyways!’ Maybe there are some other old fart students who can relate or even just regular students who are struggling socially.

I have been feeling so incredibly lonely in school. You might think that it’s me, maybe I’m doing something wrong, but I’ve been friendly, helpful, and happy because I love what I’m learning. (Well most of the time, there have been a few growing pains which is normal)

I’ve helped people out willingly, given rides home, laughed, listened to their stories, empathized, but I just still don’t feel like I fit in with the students. I’m not wanted or missed and feel like an island. Sometimes I just feel plain used too.

Of course, people go to college to learn new skills, not necessarily to make new friends, but networking is incredibly important and I just don’t feel like I can count on anyone in my classes to be a contact for possible work or as a good friend.

People don’t really care about me and a few don’t like me for no-good reason and it just hurts.

Of course the age thing doesn’t help either-Many don’ t get the references I make and I feel like I can relate more to the profs more than the students. (Makes sense since one of them is only a couple years older than me)

Speaking of the profs, it is so depressing to hear them talk about working in the industry for the past ten or fifteen years, while I pissed my twenties away working as a retail employee-secretary-retail employee-secretary-mailroom clerk.

I know, I know, nothing I can do about it now, but regret doesn’t really ever go away completely, it just fades a bit in the background. 

Maybe I’m also feeling like this because my husband moved to Guelph last Friday, while I’m still here in Ottawa. He got a job there, which is great and believe me, I’m happy for him, but the house can feel really empty. I felt the inklings of loneliness and stress in school when he was here, but it does make things a bit tougher.

Anyways, apart from the loneliness, school is great, I love what we’re doing and enjoy design so much. I just wish I could make some great friends and feel appreciated.

13 thoughts on “The Loneliness of School

  1. Tania

    I’m sorry to hear you’re having a hard time. I wish I had known when I was here – we could have met up and done something. As someone who has gone through some very empty, lonely times, all I can do is promise you that you will learn from this experience and be stronger than you ever thought you could be because of it. Hang in there!

  2. Hella Stella

    Aw, this made me sad! you’re not alone though… I have a friend in her mid-thirties who just went back to school at Algonquin, and she feels totally alone. The younger generation is just completely different and she can’t connect with them. Crazy about your hubby moving! Does that mean you’ll be moving too when you’re all done?

  3. DesignStudent Post author

    Tania-Yes, you’ll have to let me know next time you’re in town, we could go for coffee or pho or something. Thank you for your words of encouragement and I hope to be stronger from this experience.:)

  4. DesignStudent Post author

    Hella Stella-Maybe you should give me your friends contact info and we can meet up.;) Has she been to the Mature Students Network? I should probably go to more of their meetings. Provided the job goes well and is extended beyond a six-month contract, then yes, I will be moving to Guelph.:)

  5. Zhu

    I’m here!

    I felt really lonely when I took a few classes at Ottawa U. I just couldn’t connect with the student crowd for some reason. A combination of not living on campus, being a few years older (ahem… and wiser maybe) and having other priorities. I did meet people when I took courses in the summer though, the crowd was different.

  6. DesignStudent Post author

    Zhu-Aww, thanks! That does make me feel better! I may end up taking Marketing or Web Design workshops in the summer, if they’re offered. Maybe the crowd will be different too!

  7. B

    Are there any clubs or groups you could join to help fill the void? Maybe something even away from the school? :(

  8. pinklea

    Although it’s been a long time since I was in university, I didn’t make any lasting friendships there either. I remember having people to eat lunch with, and people to do projects with, and people to whine to when we all felt so overwhelmed, but I never really clicked permanently with any of my fellow students. And we were all pretty much the same age! So maybe it’s not so much an age thing, but more of a priorities thing: you’re there to learn and grow – and you are very aware of this. The social connections are nice, but not absolutely essential. That being said, your husband being in Guelph now sure doesn’t make things better! Hang in there, it’ll get better eventually! xo

  9. Laura Best

    Change can be uncomfortable for a time. I’m sorry you’re experiencing this for the time being and I hope these feelings go away. In the meantime you’re moving toward your goals and that’s something to be proud of. :)

  10. Lone Grey Squirrel

    It’s good to hear from you even though you have got the “lonesome blues”. Your husband being in Guelph sure doesn’t help for now. Plus you are in the middle of Ottawa’s seemingly endless winter. When I studied at Ottawa U, I found most of the students very serious, bookworm types with close to no social life. I did join a dungeon and dragons group but was kicked out when I got every one blown up in the game. Carleton U are just too much of the party animals and I could not relate. Still, I agree with B, there must be some club and groups that you could find some fun fellowship. Happy hunting.

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