Coming to university gave me a chance to run away as well as face my true feelings. At home I’d been burying my head in the sand, and moving away gave me the freedom I needed to start fresh, create my own life and live for me.
I’d got myself into an awkward situation. My best friend was now my boyfriend and it was tearing our friendship group apart. The 7 of us were the best of friends, but as soon as me and Sam* got together people started to voice their opinions, and got involved in all the in’s and out’s of our relationship. Being in a relationship which was based on everyone else’s opinions was what I was always against, and now I found myself trapped amongst all the rumours and not being able to make a decision based on my own personal feelings. It is so important to go with your gut instinct, nothing is truer and I knew the relationship wasn’t right all along; I was lying to myself to keep everyone else happy and was with someone for all the wrong reasons. I loved Sam but I wasn’t in love with him, and I couldn’t fake that.
Huddersfield University was an open door for me to walk through and lock behind. Being far away made it easier to forget about that our relationship that wasn’t working and create a new life for myself. Running away didn’t make the situation easier to deal with but it was easier to ignore. I could pretend I wasn’t hurting Sam by not speaking to him for weeks at a time, but as time went by the reality ate away at me.
I felt alone because no one out of our friends seemed to care about how I felt. I lied to myself and everyone around because I wasn’t allowed to be honest, I felt that my true feelings were wrong and I was scared to admit them in fear of losing my closest friends.
After ending the relationship I realised the group of friends I had were in fact not my friends. What I had predicted and feared happened, not one of them got in touch with me and ironically they all took his side.
Ending it with Sam was hard but the best decision I made. I began to build up a strong relationship with myself, which Diane Von Furstenberg said on an episode of The Hills ‘The relationship you have with yourself is the most important.’ Everyone at some point deserves time by themselves. It helps you find who you are, be happy with your own company and not be defined by someone else. My first year at university helped me discover me and be happy with who I was.
I enjoyed my first year to its best. I did things I’m not proud of but I have no regrets. I focused on my studies and enjoyed the everyday chores of living alone. No-one ever tells you how hard life is out there on your own. Balancing my social life, with university work and general chores was hard but I’ve never enjoyed anything more and wouldn’t change my life for the world.
Last year I went through all the ups and downs no one tells you about in single life. I met lads that liked me more than I liked them, and ones that didn’t like me as much as I did them. I’ve had days where I never want to meet a boy and just focus on me and my work. Then the complete opposite, when I’d be scared I’d never meet the one for me. I learnt to not let my thoughts get the better of me because the best things happen when you least expect them. The ups and downs only make you stronger, and living alone at university is about tackling and overcoming your fears on your own.
Second year hasn’t proved any easier but I’m more accepting. I don’t beat myself up over things that could have gone differently because nothing goes the way you want and things are constantly changing.
University has truly made me realise who my real friends are. Real friends will support you no matter what, and if they don’t you’re better off without. Now I live my life doing what I want when I want. I’ve learnt sometimes in life you have to look after yourself. You are number one.