Emerging adulthood is a time to reflect on questions of self. Sometimes, figuring out who you are can feel awkward, uncomfortable, and even painful. Take a look at the questions below:
- Do you wonder "who am I? How do others view me?"
- Are you looking to connect with others who feel the way that you do?
- Do you feel comfortable at Loyola?
- Do you want to feel more comfortable expressing who you are?
- Have you felt judged for who you are?
- Have you ever felt like you don't fit in because of your looks, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, spiritual beliefs, or something else?
- Have you felt unsafe because of who you are?
- Have you felt like the representative voice for a whole group?
If some of these questions hit home and you are realizing that you are not as comfortable as you would like to be and deserve to be, we suggest considering some of the following ideas while you are adjusting:
- Check out Loyola's Student Activities webpage, ALANA Student Services, the Women's Center, or Spectrum to learn about organizations and clubs that are here to offer support and help students from various backgrounds get connected.
- Stay in touch with friends and family from home - make sure they know how you are doing and what they can do to support you.
- Check out Baltimore to see what type of opportunities there are to connect with like-minded others - are there groups of similar identity that get together? Restaurants that serve food from home? Barber shops or salons that would understand your needs? Cultural events of interest?
- Make sure you are keeping up with whatever you normally do for self-care (e.g., exercise, eat well, journal, listen to your music, etc.)
Also, please consider using the Counseling Center’s free, confidential services -- even if you are not sure if counseling is what you need. With a counselor's help, you can discuss alternatives and decide the best way to proceed.
Sometimes, worries about fitting in and resulting feelings of discomfort and pain are related to issues with systemic racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, classism, and able-ism. Insensitivity and discrimination in any form is inconsistent with Loyola’s mission and values. Our counseling services and programs actively promote an awareness of and sensitivity toward differences of race, gender identity and expression, ethnicity, national origin, culture, sexual orientation, age, physical and mental abilities, religious/spiritual beliefs, financial status, and size/body shape among members of the Loyola community. If you are the victim of bias, or think you may be the victim of bias, we encourage you to read more about your reporting options at Loyola's Report Bias page and to visit the Counseling Center for emotional support.