College Is Supposed To Be Crazy, But That Doesn't Mean It Has To Be Dangerous

College Is Supposed To Be Crazy, But That Doesn't Mean It Has To Be Dangerous

Drink Safely
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Anyone who knows me will know that I am the first to offer help to someone in need. I am strong in a crisis and quick to act. Maybe it's my moral compass or maybe it's my lifeguard training, but I never walk away from a potentially dangerous situation.

I realize that not everyone is like me. Many people are afraid to intervene. They are passive bystanders. From a sociological standpoint, bystander intervention breaks the accepted rules of social interaction. But bystander intervention is not the point of this article; the point is that when someone offers help, you should listen.

This weekend I saw some bad things. I was standing in a stairwell outside a party when a group of girls walked in. One of them was stumbling and had clearly had a lot to drink. My friend and I yelled up to stairs to her friends that she needed water. Their response was to continue to the party and say that she was fine.

As I was leaving this same building, I saw a guy slouched over with two friends supporting him. I went up and asked if everything was okay. I then saw that this guy was barely conscious and could not support himself. I offered to help get him away from the party so we could call EMS. Under the amnesty policy this guy and whoever placed the call would be safe. No one listened to me. The guy then threw up and eventually they took him home because they didn't want to get in trouble with the school for underage drinking.

I spent a lot of my night thinking about this guy. Wondering what happened, if he was safe. Possibly this was because he threw up on my sandals several times, but it was also because I was concerned. I felt bad for not calling EMS myself, but if I'm being honest there was no way I was going to support a semi-conscious 6-foot man. I'm strong, but I'm not that strong. I was frustrated by my physical limitations. I wanted to help and make sure this kid was okay, but I had to give in and let his friends do what they thought was best.

I realize that the school year has just started and that everyone is excited to see their friends, but that does not give any excuse to binge drink and put yourself into a dangerous situation. Yes, we are young. And yes, we need to make mistakes. But those mistakes do not need to endanger our lives or the lives of our friends. Many college students would rather put their friend in a potentially lethal situation than risk getting into trouble with the school or the police.

That is not okay. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, over 1,800 college students die of alcohol-related causes each year. That's about 1 student per 4-year college in the US. Deaths from drinking are not rare. They are very real and it frustrates me to see friends not look out for each other.

If you're reading this, I hope that means you are ready to look out for your friends. I hope that you will offer and accept help when it is needed. I'm not saying you shouldn't drink, but that you should look out for your friends and they should look out for you. Everyone makes mistakes and you don't want your one bad night to define (or end) your life. 1,800 college lives. Those lives could form their own school. So let's place a higher value on ourselves and live our lives in a fun and safe manner.

Cover Image Credit: nydailynews.com

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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American Or Christian?

Can you really be both?

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This is a thought that has lingered in my mind for a very long time.

Personally, I hate news and politics. It's depressing and it seems like both parties (and people in general) just don't get it. Political conversation gets on my ever-loving nerves and literally gets me down in the dumps for the day.

I just simply don't watch it anymore. There is too much negativity.

That doesn't mean that I am uniformed. I am not advocating for ignorance or anything like that. I prefer to read and figure out my information from sites "in the middle."

As I was eating dinner with my wife the other day we started talking about the new Abortion laws in Alabama and Georgia. As a Christ-follower and a staunch defender of Biblical inerrant, I detest abortion.

Before you read any farther, you must understand something: This article is not about my defense of my beliefs regarding hot topics like abortion or homosexuality. I do not have the time to write about said topics now. I am just asking you to accept what I believe for the sake of the article.

But, anyway, these abortion bills. I can make a pretty good case that they are Constitutional because they are protecting the Life (one of the Rights given to American Citizens) from others. Yes, I know the arguments against said point but continue with me please.

This led our conversation to talk about Homosexual marriage, something that I am against as well. And not just because of Leviticus but because of the New Testament as well.

But, shaking my head, I said something that my wife seemed to agree with:

"As a Christian, I know it's wrong and I cannot agree with it. As an American, I see no reason why it should be illegal. Unless your choices infringe someone's Rights, you should be free to do what you wish (technically speaking)."

This is my dilemma. Well, actually it's not a dilemma. I know that I am a Christian before I am an American. I love this country greatly, and I know how blessed I am to be born here. For all the hate this country gets (and some of it is deserved) and all the problems we have (and we have a lot), we are shoulders above other countries in many ways. I am so thankful for all the men and women who have served to protect me and keep me safe. I'm thankful for a lot of things. And I am proud to be an American.

But my identity in Christ comes first. This is why I do not get into politics much. I don't really care at the end of the day. Because while America has been blessed, we still have work to do here. And this is not my forever home. This is not where I will spend eternity.

I try and respect everyone's opinions, and I earnestly try to love everyone, even when they trash and disrespect my beliefs and convictions. But I must put my call to Christ about anything that has to do with this nation. I will pray for ALL our leaders because I was told to do so (I prayed for President Obama when he was in office). And I will be here to support this nation. But I cannot put it above Christ's commands.

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