By Emma Purce
Q: I just got rejected from college. How do I deal with it?
A: I completely understand what you’re going through. The mounting pressure of waiting to hear back from your first choice — or even your safety school — can quickly build and become stifling. Hearing that you’ve been deferred, waitlisted or flat-out rejected can be absolutely crushing. The agony of waiting to hear culminates into an overwhelming moment of complete and utter disappointment and despair. Dealing with this dejection can be extremely hard, so I’m going to give you a few tried and true methods that will make you feel better.
My personal go-to method of coping was to immediately cry. As soon as you read the words, “We regret that,” burst into tears. The harder, louder and longer you cry, the better you will feel. If you’re comfortable with it, cry in front of as many people as you can, so that everyone immediately knows what has happened and to not talk about it with you right away. If you don’t like crying in front of people, find yourself a corner or a room where you can curl up and cry for as long as you need to. It always helps to have a fluffy blanket or a nice, big stuffed animal to cry into. If you wear makeup, feel free to let your mascara run. Wear those streaks of black down your face with pride, like a Major League player in the starting lineup of the World Series wearing eye black. Turn that mascara into war paint.
If crying isn’t working for you, eating away your feelings is a definite way to help yourself. There are many ways you can go about this. There are different types of food you can stuff yourself with, anything from chips to wings to ice cream. Eat until you’re full, then continue eating until you’re so focused on how sick you feel that you don’t even notice how sad you are.
Another method is complete and absolute denial. If you never acknowledge your rejection, you won’t have to deal with the sadness that results. Once you read that email or letter, put it away and don’t look at it again. Do your best to forget it by distracting yourself with Netflix marathons.
While college results can be stressful and sad, there are good and bad ways to cope. While crying can definitely help, if you find yourself crying for too long, or can’t seem to shake the sadness, speaking to someone may be a good idea. Eating your feelings and ignoring the results aren’t smart methods of dealing with your feelings. Each person is different and each case is different, so the best methods of coping are unique, and don’t work for everyone. An MPH method of dealing with college rejection is to make light of it, to print out your rejection email and put it onto the “Wall of Rejection” in the Student Lounge, usually to the chorus of cheers from the senior class, showing support through humor.