There is nothing worse than feeling singled-out for the wrong reasons. Whether you’re the victim of a rumor, a hookup gone bad, or you’ve turned yourself into an urban legend, no one wants to be ridiculed or talked about.
Just know that you are not alone; a lot of people go through similar situations and make it out of college alive.
What to do if you’ve been labeled as “THAT” girl or guy.
Situation 1: You’re the Victim of a Rumor
To me, this is one of the worst things that can happen to you because not only does everyone think something bad about you, but it’s not even true!
With the emergence of sites like College ACB and other sources of anonymous postings, people have the power to literally ruin your life via the web at any time.
What is important in this situation is to realize one thing: rumors are rumors, and they don’t last forever.
Even when it seems like there is no light at the end of the tunnel and you feel as though everyone is talking about you, don’t let it get you down. I know it sounds like something mom would say, but people who start rumors are insecure, jealous, and just plain mean.
You have to remember that the people who truly care about you don’t give a sh*t about some stupid rumor associated with you and will stick by you no matter what. Don’t forget, college does not last forever, and neither will your rumor.
By next week, you will be old news and people will either believe the rumor or dismiss it. Either way, you can’t control what people think (unless you go around to every single person and try to change their mind), but it’s not worth it; they’re not worth it.
As you get older, you begin to realize that there will always be people who will talk about you, make up things about you, or just WON’T like you; all you can do is be true to who you are, never believe the hype, and let these things go.
Situation 2: Your Private Business Has Been Broadcasted
Another unfortunate issue in college is the level of maturity displayed by 95% of the student population.
When you are 18, you think hooking up with a random girl and then telling your entire fraternity is funny, makes you look cool, gives you status, whatever. When you are 22, you probably think the same way.
Unfortunately, the things you do in the dorm/bedroom with people are no longer private matters. What you have to do is protect yourself against becoming the butt of someone else’s joke and you do this by NOT hooking up with people you don’t know or trust. Of course, this isn’t fantasy island, this is college, so random hookups are the norm.
If someone is broadcasting your sexual history to his/her group of friends, fraternity/sorority, or sports team/locker room, you can’t do much about it once it’s done, but you can speak up for yourself to try and get him/her to stop.
There are no guarantees in life, but if you never ask for something, the answer is always “no.” If you feel comfortable, approach the person spreading the stories of your hookups and ask him/her to stop. While he/she may laugh in your face and tell you to get lost, you are putting the idea in their head that what they are doing is wrong and it’s rubbing you the wrong way.
Again, it may not stop your ex-hookup from running his/her mouth, but at least you stood up for yourself and when it comes down to it, the person will eventually feel bad about hurting you, especially if you let him/her know about it.
Situation 3: You’ve Become the Outcast
This can be tough because a big part of college life is your group of friends, your fraternity/sorority, teammates, roommates, whoever you are friends with, it’s usually a group and it hurts when you are feeling left out.
I have seen this happen to many people I care about; they’re in a sorority and all of a sudden everyone hates/is ignoring them; someone on a team is being bullied and no one wants to stick by the person being bullied; two roommates hate their third roommate and want nothing to do with him/her.
Whatever the reason for your exclusion, you have to realize that it will pass, BUT in the meantime, you need to make new friends.
The people who are singling you out and treating you badly are not your real friends, I can tell you this from personal experience as well as the experiences from my own friends. People who go out of their way to hurt/exclude others are not people you want in your life anyway.
I know it can be hard breaking away from unhealthy friendships and starting anew, but trust me, you will be so much better off and happier if you find people who you trust, who like you for who you are, and won’t desert you when things aren’t going perfectly.
If a friendship isn’t working out, don’t stick around to find out how it ends. Join some clubs, go to different parties, meet new people; whatever you choose to do, you will find others like yourself and you will build NEW friendships.
It’s never easy being “that” girl/guy.
It can feel like everyone is pointing their finger at you, or not even looking your way. Whatever you are going through is a phase; it will pass, and you will look back on it as a lesson learned.