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Teenager at university social problems

(13 Posts)
Claritta Tue 11-Apr-17 14:15:27

My DD is first year uni and a group of 4 of them agreed to share a house next year. DD was so happy as she never really felt like she fitted in at school. Yesterday they messaged her to say they were going to share with another 2 girls and there was no room for her. She is devastated. She thought they were her close friends and on top of that it is now very late to find another group. She told me last night that she feels she is always treated like this - never one of the crowd, never first to be invited. She has a wide circle of friends and hobbies but no-one to call a best friend and no-one who watches out for her, she feels she is a person people talk to only if there is no one better. And I am afraid her so called university friends' behaviour has just reinforced this. Any advice? I know she won't be the first this has happened to but I feel completely powerless as a parent

ClaudiaWankleman Tue 11-Apr-17 14:18:25

Practical help: there will be lots of students in the same boat (I was once). Does the uni offer second year returners accommodation? It might be the best choice (don't have to find flatmates, they are found for you).

There may be others on her course looking for a housemate, she should post on FB/ ask around.

Claritta Tue 11-Apr-17 14:28:24

Sadly no returners accommodation and no fall back list for those who need a place. She is so worried about appearing needy or desperate but has messaged another friend to see if she can join their group. It's the knock to her confidence that is so troubling

mylaptopismylapdog Tue 11-Apr-17 14:35:22

Sounds like she may have had a lucky escape from a group that would have been unreliable and selfish. As well a contacting the accommodation services it might be a good idea to contact the counselling service as they will probably have dealt with this scenario many times before and could give her some ideas how to deal with their thoughtlessness.

WankersHacksandThieves Tue 11-Apr-17 17:47:22

That's really horrible sad

I don't think she has found the right crowd/people yet. I don't have any at Uni yet but suspect DS1 will end up in a similar boat. What about trying to get a share with an entirely different group like a private let with non students? or a room in a family home?

Mary21 Tue 11-Apr-17 17:58:36

My son has found unipolar has a find a housemate section. I also found rightmove has a student section if you look on rightmove under rent.
If she is having lots of problems socially it might be worth seeing if student services or the student counselling service offer anything helpful. My son who has asd has mentoring

Claritta Tue 11-Apr-17 19:58:44

Thanks for the advice and suggestions - I think you are right - if these people are like this now, what would they be like to share with? My best flatshares were with people I didn't know and the one time I shared with 5 female friends it was a disaster. I will look up the links but on the emotional side any ideas on what to say?

crazycatgal Tue 11-Apr-17 20:07:02

This happened to me and a couple of friends in our first year, we were excluded from the bigger group - thank god it happened before we lived with them because they were horrible. Tell her to be glad she's seen their true colours before living with them.

Can she contact student services? My uni has events to sign up for where people without people to live with can meet up and arrange living arrangements.

AgeingArtemis Wed 12-Apr-17 17:53:36

I think it's very common- I was part of a big group (8 of us) who were trying to find a house together. Eventually we had to split into 2 smaller groups and it turned out I didn't really fit in either group! I was still friends with the other people, they weren't deliberately nastly, just a bit young and thoughtless, and they'd already found their "dream house" that didn't have space for one more.

I messaged a few friends but they were already sorted for houses, eventually I ended up sharing with a quiet but nice girl on my sports team and we lived together for all 3 years (with various other people) and are really really good friends now smile

porterwine Sat 15-Apr-17 00:33:24

I'm sorry- what a horrible situation. I think having to decide on 2nd year accommodation so early on is really tough. I was studying abroad in my 2nd year and was so grateful to avoid the issue!

All I can say is, she will find her group, or her "tribe" as people say! My brother had a tough time throughout school with bullies. He was very eccentric, slightly camp I suppose! A little David Walliams-esque. He never fitted in and deliberately chose a university only a 45minute drive away as he expected to want to come home every weekend. But uni completely changed him. He had a rocky first few months with social anxiety but he soon after found his group and he completely changed. Family friends couldn't believe the difference in him when he'd be home for the holidays. He became a social butterfly, was really well liked dare I say popular! Now at 28 he has stayed really close to his close group of 6 and I can safely say university changed his life and whole outlook for the better. I don't mean to sound cheesy but she WILL find her group. First year is tough because you're put into halls of residence and it's almost expected that you become bffs with your flatmates. Is she a member of any clubs? Does she talk to many people on her course? I was very lucky that my flatmates in first year are still some of my best friends, but I know so many people at uni who by 3rd year barely ever spoke to their "friends" from their first few months. I'd just tell her that there is no rush, she's there for the next 2 years and it's better to be patient and form really true friendships than rush into "fake" ones because she feels a bit lonely at the moment.

Claritta Sat 15-Apr-17 18:59:12

Thanks for the advice. I and my partner have talked her through all the various flatshares we had and realised how random they all were - most of the time we were both just filling a space rather than being invited as part of a close knit group. And as some of you have said when I think about the people I have stayed in touch with it was people who I didn't know before I joined the flat. So we have said to her don't worry about them you can only be responsible for your own behaviour, sharing with random people is exciting and you won't have the stress of "belonging to their group". Still got the stress of finding somewhere but it is London so I think there is a bit more time. Thanks for your posts - sometimes it's just knowing that others have gone through the same. One of her brothers told me that when he was at uni he just refused to get embroiled in these situations and just looked for one room in a house. Sounds like just a matter of confidence doesn't it?

Thatextrainch Sat 15-Apr-17 19:10:17

This happened to me. All my good friends at uni lived at home so I didn't have a group as such to live with. I was friendly with another group from my halls, they offered me a room then pulled the offer in the June(!). I went to uni the other end of the country and had a good job in the town which I didn't want to lose so had to have accommodation over the summer. I ended up renting a bed sit in a house with other students. Worked out quite well for me, no one stealing my food etc

Blossom789 Mon 17-Apr-17 17:41:42

That's just unforgivable isn't it. Student services in uni's are pretty good, they may know of other students in a similar situation or looking for additional housemates.

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