A Message To College Freshmen From Your Therapist


Hey there, little buddy! How’s it going? Just “fine”? Okay, well we can discuss that later, time permitting.

So, it’s been a few weeks since you started freshman year and I just wanted to check in with you. You know, see how you’re doing, make sure everything’s all right. That kind of stuff.

Although, who am I kidding? Of course everything isn’t “all right.” I mean, obviously freshman year is entirely brand new and super exciting and pushes you out of your comfort zone (which, according to some motivational posters your annoying-ass roommate probably has on her side of the room, is a good thing). But also like, that shit is exhausting, you feel me?

It’s okay. Just lay back on the armchair and close your eyes. I’ll be over here, taking some notes. Now, I know that no one ever wants to admit that their freshman year isn’t exactly unfolding as the balls to the wall, crazy fun, super sexy perfection bubble they were expecting. In reality, you’ve probably spent a few evenings binge eating a couple of Snickers bars while scrolling through that weirdly-already-super-popular-girl-down-the-hall’s Instagram and telling yourself that you’re having just as much fun as she is, just in a different way. GOD.

And that’s fine. Breathe in, breathe out. Release the tension.

Look, I just want to tell you that, despite what you’ve been telling your high school friends in your group chat, I know you’ve been crying. Like, a lot. But I’m here to let you in on a dirty little secret: everyone fucking cries all the time during freshman year. Freshman year is a giant social experiment in which you’re ripped from everything and everyone you’ve ever known, and, in some cases, moved across an entire continent. And, so far the only things you have to show for it are a maybe moldy shower caddy and increasing panic that you’ll run out of dorm snacks and have no way of getting to Target to replace them until fall break. That can definitely seem bleak. Plus how long has it been since you’ve snuggled with your dog? Actually, don’t even answer that. Any amount of time is still too damn long. That shit is enough to make anyone cry.

But that’s okay! Everyone is crying! Even those super annoying people who joined like, a thousand clubs and are full of “school spirit” are crying. They’re definitely secret shower criers. They’ll admit it three years from now.

Do you need a tissue? Here you go. There, there. We’ll get through it together.

And don’t worry, weekends won’t always be so awkward. Soon you may even know the people whose parties you randomly show up to! You’ll know what frats you like best and what places habitually suck. You’ll realize that no one wears heels to apartment parties and which bars don’t laugh in your face when you show your fake I.D.

Wait, what? You don’t even have a fake yet? Don’t worry, you will. And trust me when I say that your mom will be pissed when she randomly finds it in an old purse of yours she borrows four years from now.

What should you do until then? Honestly, I know this is cliché AF, but just try to fake it till you make it. But know that it’s perfectly acceptable to call your mom after dinner and cry to her. Also: drink. In fact, here’s a prescription for some Franzia.

Oh, don’t worry. It’s perfectly legal. I’m a licensed psychology major.

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I came for the wine, but I stayed for the complimentary appetizer sampler plate.

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