“I didn’t get accepted into any of the universities that I…

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“I didn’t get accepted into any of the universities that I wanted, and I ended up going to a lesser quality school. I hated being there. On the first day, I thought about buying a plane ticket and going home. I felt like I had nothing in common with the people around me. I felt like they belonged and I didn’t. My plan was just to survive– get through six lectures a day, keep to myself, and get back to my dorm room as soon as possible. I didn’t even talk to my own roommate. I’m ashamed of it now. I was so rude and self-centered, and it ended up making me lonely and miserable. I felt depressed. I was barely sleeping. Then one night I overheard my roommate talking on the phone with her mother. And I could tell she was having family problems. After she hung up, we stayed up all night talking. I told her that I was having a hard time too. She became my best friend after that night. We’d have dinner together. Whenever I left the room, she’d ask me where I was going. It felt so good to have someone worry about me. It’s been an important six months for me. I’ve realized how much I need other people. By not valuing the people around me, I was only hurting myself.”

(Mumbai, India)