The number of times I heard the comment, "Oh so you're buying your friends" when I told people I would be going through the recruitment process was ridiculous. I heard it from high school friends, teachers, on Facebook, even random people at a restaurant, you name it.
Not going to lie, I was very skeptical. I had people always telling me that I didn't fit the sorority girl image or I wasn't that type of girl. I thought I knew what they meant, I hardly knew anything about sororities or much less the types of girls in a sorority? All I had ever seen was movies or the people older than me that joined once they got to their university.
I told myself that I would try it, if I didn't like it, they wouldn't hold me against my will and force me to stay. Might as well give it a shot.
The first round of recruitment was, well... a rush. Visiting 13 chapters in one day, was insane. I met so many women who were so excited to meet me. I found myself the next round, getting more excited than nervous. I was excited to go back to the houses that I truly thought I could see myself finding friends in. Over time and after every round it became easier to find out the houses you loved and the ones that you might not be able to see yourself in. Pref day came and it was down to two houses filled with girls that I completely adored. However, I knew where I wanted to end up and in my heart, I knew if that wasn't where I got a bid back from, I would be devastated.
I lay in bed the night before bid day just stressed and not sleeping because I wanted to be in that house so so so badly. I began to wonder how I went from not even knowing if I wanted to rush, to almost in tears over the thought of not getting a bid.
The girls that I fell in love with over the course of a week, already made such an impact on my life, and I hardly knew them. I aspired to be like them, I looked up to them. I felt like I could be myself around them, I wasn't nervous and never felt out of place when I walked into the house. I thought about all of the other girls that sat with me on preference day and how they could potentially become my new sisters. All of it was so crazy to me, but all seemed so perfect.
When I opened my bid on bid day... I cried, my heart sung, and my lungs filled with screams of joy as I sprinted to my new home. The energy and the feeling of bid day is something impossible to describe unless you experience it yourself and you are truly happy. It was an absolute dream.
At the same time, I didn't know what I had gotten myself into. Alpha Chi Omega at Arizona State has one of, if not the busiest calendars each semester. Ranging from socials and date parties to volunteer work and our precious philanthropy... Alpha Chi is truly a place of real strong women.
Every single woman that makes up this chapter is incredibly strong, beautiful, smart, and one million other things that would exceed anyone's expectations. I have such a supportive and caring group of people behind me in any given time, unlike my experience in high school.
To stay in good standing with your sorority there are grade requirements you must meet, community service hours that you must keep up with, mandatory events to attend, and yes there are dues... but those go to the chapter as a whole. Those who say that being in a sorority is "buying friends" is wrong because I don't walk up to each girl and give her $10 and say thanks for being my friend.
Understood, sororities are not for everyone, but there is more to them than meets the eye. Before judging from what you see on television, movies, or rumors, be sure to realize that there is more to it.
One piece of advice that I would give is if you are wondering or even have the slightest interest to go through sorority recruitment... do it. You can always back out but it is better to try than wonder.