Another huge worry for many people is that if they haven’t found a core group of friends by first year, they won’t have a chance to after that. This could not be further from the truth. You will constantly meet new people throughout university as you join different societies, take different modules, become friends with different people and get to know their flatmates etc. I made some of my closest friends in my final year of university.
Another thing to remember is that university is a process that gets easier over time, and while it may seem that everyone else is loving their first year, the truth is that many people struggle with feelings of loneliness. It’s all part of the experience, and talking about this with others will help immensely. Over time university will begin to feel like a much less daunting place. You will know your subject better, feel more comfortable being at and finding your way around university, and feel more at home in the city. You will also have built up better coping mechanisms, so that when you’re having a bad day you’ll know what to do to make yourself feel better. Relationships with the people you meet will strengthen over time, and you will begin to feel more relaxed in their presence, like old friends you have known for a long time.
Whilst first year was a hard time for me emotionally I am incredibly glad that I stuck it out. However, I know that university isn’t right for everyone and that for some, the best decision they can make for themselves is to drop out. Unfortunately there is no ‘one size fits all’ method to coping with university, it is all about listening to yourself and what you need at that moment in time and knowing that things will get better.