Parties: The Two Sided Dilemma

Drinking in my household was always looked down upon, so as I grew up, I never got to try it in my own home prior to turning 21. I finally turned of age last April, and since then, I’ve only had a couple mixed drinks and had a few sips of wine, champagne and beer; I hated all of them. At this point, if it’s not a mixed drink, I know I’ll probably detest it. Do you know what it’s like to be a senior in college and not have any desire to drink or party like a lot of other people? It leaves me constantly left out of group gatherings and hangout sessions. 

Frankly, I don’t see the whole appeal to getting drunk with a lot of friends at some random person’s house. Maybe that’s why I never get invited—because everyone already knows my stance on the subject. Perhaps they made the assumption that I was “too busy,” “didn’t want to be bothered” or would say no immediately. Even if I do say no to hanging out, the thought of going out of your way to invite me to do something means a lot. It tells me you want me around and you enjoy spending time with me. If you constantly leave me out, it feels like you don’t care for my existence. I think this is the only reason I want to be invited to a party, because it makes me feel that people actually want to hang out with me. 

But to be fair, I also hate large parties. Being around people who are drunk makes me uncomfortable and my anxiety increases. I also hate the loud music—which I most likely hate given my taste in music—and it being extremely crowded. If this proves anything, most nights I’m in my room and just watching YouTube while working on my creative outlets: the complete opposite of going to a party. I even hate the outside effects of partying. Don’t even get me started on my neighbors in my apartment complex. I’m currently student teaching, which means getting up earlier than your average college student. But meanwhile, the people I share a wall with in the next apartment over like to have parties fairly often with no consideration of other people. It’ll be 1 a.m. and I’ll wake up in the middle of the night from them shouting and laughing. It’s so frustrating and makes me hate parties even more. 

I guess it’s a double edged sword; I don’t want to feel left out but partying is not my scene. Can we bring back hanging out without excessive drinking? Or drinking at all? Can’t a group of friends just get together and just...hang out? Study sessions? Craft night? Watch movies and YouTube videos or have a meal together? Maybe I’ll bring that back.