With the final semester wrapping up, it’s time for me to address a question that has been lingering in the back of my mind this entire year. I hoped that by this time of year my question would have been answered, but I guess university can’t teach you everything.
Why aren’t we happy?
On Facebook, Instagram and Twitter everyone I know seems to be having a blast at university. Obviously, I am aware that what we post online is just the high-light reel. However, it always amazes me to see how the smiling faces on my Instagram feed transform into these miserable glances I see as soon as I step on campus.
I have had so many revealing conversations over the past week because people are finally coming clean about their experiences with university. The stories they tell are anything but a high-light reel. These aren’t stories of making memories and experiencing new things with amazing friends. These are stories of room-mate troubles, sexual abuse, bad teachers, financial struggles and homesickness.
Halifax has suffered an incredibly trying winter. As I look out my window now, I am still surrounded by high snow banks and ice covered sidewalks. There is no denying that part of this dull sadness that seems to have befallen this city is in part due to the lack of sunlight and greenery. But it can’t just be winter blues.
There have been many times this year that I’ve reconsidered my choice to come out to Halifax for university. Times where I’ve questioned my major, my academic intelligence, and every decision I have made to brought me to this point.
On the internet, websites like Buzzfeed and Youtube offer advice on how to be happy. It seems like most of the population has realized that while on screen we may have an ideal lifestyle, reality just doesn’t compare.
So why can’t we talk about this? Why am I only finding out now that people all around me are fighting to hold in issues I have wanted to talk about all year? What are we doing to change this reality?
I honestly don’t have an answer for these questions.