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22 November 2014

The Weight of Expectation

Sometimes inspiration stems from the most bizarre places at the most peculiar of times. It's a Saturday night and as a post-Friday recovery, I've spent the evening in a onesie, flicking through Glamour magainze, with Desperate Housewives playing in the background and slowly but surely getting through too much Häagen Dazs Salted Caramel.


 Between drifting in and out of ice cream comas,  I began thinking to myself, 'I'm a student, this is not how I should be spending my Saturday night'. And that thought process has lead to to this whole blog post. A can of worms has been opened.

Why is it, I, as a fully fledged adult, with no more or less rights than the next person, thought what I was doing, staying in instead of going out, was 'wrong'. Why should I have to apologise for not wanting to go to a sweaty club and getting drunk to the point of sickness. Why is the first question, when people find out you're a student, 'I bet Freshers was MAD'. This isn't the only stigma I've been noticing more and more recently, but it's one which has hit me with full force as student life has taken swing. If people want to go out every night or every weekend, I wouldn't ever stop them or judge them, so why judge the reversal? Am I not allowed to indulge my liver to a weekend without it crying out for help?

And the pressures of fellow humans doesn't stop there, only being 19, an age I would definitely still consider young, I am constantly asked if I'm dating anybody. And, when I say no, as I have been saying on and off for the majority of my teen life, the immediate reply is 'Oh what a shame', or 'But you're so xxxx (fill with empty adjective)'. And I've finally realised, actually, it's okay to be single. It's not a shame to not have another half. I have plenty of time for the love stuff. Being an independent person is not a burden, and I shouldn't have to justify it. Even the fictional life guru to all women, Bridget Jones, has a dependency on men like no other. But sometimes I just want to scream at the telly 'Man up Bridget. Happiness doesn't depend on Mr Darcy, happiness bloody depends on you!' Just because you don't have a man at your side, or vice versa, it doesn't mean there is something wrong with you. And it shouldn't be a reason for anybody to think there is.


Through my teenage years, I've learnt the expectations of the people around you, are the ones by which you judge yourself. And I just think it's something that needs to change. We are all individuals, we all do our things and have our own feelings and think our own thoughts. Some people want to be Doctors, some people want to be artists and some people want to be Kim K impersonators and that is okay. I'm sure she won't mind me saying, my younger sister recently dropped out of sixth form. She'd completed a year, absolutely hated it and failed her AS's, so after half a term of Upper Sixth (in England this is senior year, or the school year you turn 18 which is not compulsory over here), she decided it was making her life miserable and so, she never went back. And actually, all me and my parents were thinking is 'Thank goodness'. Sarah got herself a full time job within 3 days of leaving and is on a different road of happiness. Because these other roads totally exist, most people just don't want to give them a go when it's not the norm.

To be completely and utterly frank, I think people tend to forget their ultimate goal should be happiness. Self happiness at that. And for some people that means being a runway model, for others that means never settling down and for a lot they don't know where happiness is even hiding. But don't let your happiness be defined by other people and what you should or shouldn't be doing. If you want to go out and get crunk every night (maybe not quite so much liver-happiness there), then that's up to you and if you want to sit in and watch films or even go to the library and spend your evening there, people shouldn't be telling you that's not okay. That is totally, 100% okay. Do your own thing, be your own human being and find your own happiness through your own means. Expectations of other people definitely don't define you.

Ciao for Now!
x

20 comments:

  1. You have to take a look at the people around you. Sometimes you feel like this because that is what everyone else 'seems' to be doing. But in actual fact, there are a heck of a lot more students more like you than you think. Is it yourself that is doing primary education? Sorry i'f i'm got you mixed up with someone else but my sister does that too and they are in uni and placements more that the average student so they don't have time to go out or if they too are too exhausted.

    I am generalising here but I found foreign students didn't go out much either. That's not to say that they weren't sociable, they just did other things that didn't involve getting wasted every day.

    You're not the only one, even if it seems like it sometimes. It's six years since I finished uni and I have found people have more respect for you if you know yourself, what you like and stand your ground rather than bowing to pressure. Of course not all people at your age can see this and they genuinely do think you are weird if you don't go out every night like they do. But most people and even the others I mention will eventually respect difference to them.

    Amy at Amy & More

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    Replies
    1. I completely agree! It's just a shame not everyone realises this quite so quickly and some people never do! x

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  2. This is a great post, so thought provoking and so true! I recently had to make a big decision with regards to my own wellbeing and I'm learning that my own happiness is far more important than what other people think about me. Very encouraging piece and thanks for sharing :)
    Hannah x
    Hanniemc.co.uk

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    Replies
    1. Ah I'm so glad it's working out for you, it's so so important to think of what's best for you and not the rest of the world! x

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  3. Wonderful post and couldn't agree more! I stopped drinking without really realising a while ago, and when I go to work people ask what I did at the weekend and seem almost offended I did very little! I am very much passed the going out drinking stage and much rather stay in and relax! Like you said, there's nothing wrong with that! x

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    Replies
    1. One of my best friends doesn't drink either and I remember when she told me just totally admiring her and thinking she was super brave, but really it shouldn't even seem like she's being brave, it's just a different life choice! I hardly ever drink now (well... until I came to uni hahah) but even when I do it's so rare! x

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  4. Totally agree with you! Great post, I really enjoyed reading.

    Anika May // UK Fashion & Style Blog

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  5. Great post - I felt the pressure while at University and still do now. You just need to do what makes you happy.

    Lizzie's Daily Blog

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  6. completely agree. Society gets way to involved in lives of individuals :) Loved reading this.

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  7. I totally agree with you and was thinking just the same the other day! It's getting to the point where I don't care what people expect me to do anymore, I am just going to do what I want. Yes, I enjoy my nights out but it doesn't mean I don't enjoy my nights in too. Looking forward to your next post!
    http://katiethestudentlife.blogspot.co.uk/

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  8. I feel you! I'm a 19 year old uni student too and I have nothing against people who want to go out but when I do it's always the worst thing in the world - I hate it and thusly rather than telling people how it makes me feel I just say I don't really "do" it - the responses are always a mixture of shock and disgust but hey - at least I'm doing what I know makes me feel better right?

    www.alittlebitheather.blogspot.co.uk

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  9. I love this post!
    I'm in my second year at a university and I have only gone out a couple of nights and everyone is always thinking I'm crazy, but it's just not that interesting to me. Not that I don't want to go out sometimes, but I know that personally I prefer having a night in!

    www.paigelet.blogspot.com

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  10. That's such an honest and inspirational post.
    Thank you very much for that!
    I am happy to see that people finally understand the 'concept' of happiness.
    I really hope you have an awesome day!

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  11. Such a great post! I followed the same route as your sister and couldn't be happier now. Infact, I'm currently sitting in my office reading this. <3 xx

    nessiehere.blogspot.co.uk

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  12. I just simply love everything about this post!

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  13. Awesome post! So honest and absolutely true. Everybody should do whatever makes them happy :)

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  14. Great post, I completely agree. I'm doing a year abroad in Italy at the moment and definitely still feel a certain amount of 'expectation' and what I 'should' be doing to make the most of it. I did a similar post: http://ayearinperugia.blogspot.it/2014/11/doing-things-for-your-own-good.html
    Glad someone else thinks this way!
    x

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  15. We just need to enjoy our lives! Moreover, it is so important to think of what's best for us, and even not for the rest of the world!

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  16. We are all individuals, we all do our things and have our own feelings and think our own thoughts.

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