To Be Dependent, or To Not Be Dependent Is The Question

by Mary McMichael 2 years ago in college

Choosing between an Independent and a Dependent Lifestyle.

To Be Dependent, or To Not Be Dependent Is The Question

What do I do? I'm so dependent upon everyone, how will I ever become independent?

This is what I was thinking in my first year of college. I was so wrapped up in being with my family to where it just didn't feel right to even live in a dorm. Let alone, away from familiar faces, sounds, etc. This is the story I'm about to tell you, I hope you are able to somehow relate, and find a sort of independence through reading this.


I had to learn how to become more social, but didn't know how. See, before I was super isolated at my home when I was in high school. I didn't drive, lived out in the country, had chores to fulfill, and never had much time in the day to be social. What I did was a form of social reintegration, first semester last year I was living in an apartment and had online classes. The second semester I had a private dorm and face-to-face classes. And, finally this last semester I decided I needed to try harder, so I currently live in a dorm room with a roommate and I'm taking all face-to-face classes. Now I'm out of my dorm 95% of the time, and the other 5% is spent in my dorm doing what ordinary people do. I've learned it's easier to focus on being independent by asking what I believe rather than focus on what others think I should be doing or in general of who's around. Because at the end of the day you only have yourself, and if the whole day is consumed of yourself it's pretty lonely.


This is much what it feels like when a person isolates. Their feelings and emotions get the best of them. They can feel as if they are suffocating because of loneliness and the feelings/emotions consuming them. I should know, I was once in a place such as this. When I saw I wasn't going anywhere, I dragged myself out of the rut, and made socializing the normal and a priority.

Being Dependent

I was too dependent upon others to do everything for me. Never did I realize I was a follower, not a leader. Then when I got a job, a lot of coworkers would say to me, "You are your own person, why are you so consumed in the past and not your work?" Not understanding what they were meaning led me to be fired from that career, and that was when I understood I needed to make some changes in my life. These changes were in order to be social without being consumed in my past to teach myself how to let loose and just have fun. This led to me having to figure out how to be a leader.

Finding the Leader Within

I had to find my inner leader in order to be social. The reason I sought this to be a socialistic goal, is because it can show followers they don't have to be dependent upon me to be followers, and they definitely don't have to be dependent upon me to be friends with them. One might ask why? Well here's why, we are our own person, we are not forms of others including the leader. The last reason I sought this to be true is since my roommate is autistic, I wanted to show her how she wouldn't have to be dependent upon myself when I graduate this upcoming semester. You know what this ultimately tells me? It tells me that leaders are independent socialists, and that isolators are dependent antisocialists. It also goes to show that people who are independent and leading others don't feel alone as often, it's the dependent isolators in which feel strongly alone the majority of the time because they are alone.

The Day I Found Out My Roommate Isolated A Lot

As I said before, I have a roommate whom struggles with autism. I'm not saying this as a label or that it defines her, I'm only acknowledging the fact. There have been times I have had to help remind her it's dinner time or that we need to get to class. There have been a few times where she faced the consequences of not answering because of the fact I couldn't be late to class, and with dinner sometimes I wasn't around because I went out with friends. Autism can make people isolate more than the average person. Knowing part of this within my roommate made me want to also become a leader to pass down the leader characteristics this year after I graduate. She will be a roommate to someone else this upcoming fall and I don't want her to feel she can't make it without me there.

What Do You Choose?

Life is much like a hot air balloon you choose whether or not to be tied down, you choose whether or not the situation is going to be negative or positive, and ultimately you choose whether or not to move on. At the end of the day you are the one in control of you, so who are you going to believe?

Read next: The Unconventional College Life
Mary McMichael

Hello, I'm Mary McMichael and I'm the founder of Survivors For Justice. I am in the process of writing my own book, getting my bachelor's in digital media, have a mind for creativity, and a big heart for people.

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