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This article is for anyone who has ever felt pressured to go out or do something and was made to feel bad for passing up the offer. In the world of college, even high school, there is a lot of potential for fun: from wild-ish house parties to a night out at the classiest of bars and all things in between. For some, those options seem to be chock full of possibilities for adventure, while for others, even the thought is cringe-worthy. Now is as good of a time as ever to point out that everybody’s ideas of a good  Friday or Saturday night vary. We don’t all have to agree that being in a specific setting will be enjoyable–even if the whole friend group is there. Having your favorite posse in attendance may make things more bearable, but the fact of the matter is that some social situations are just not appealing. That’s okay. You’re okay. It’s okay! This is the confirmation that you’ve been waiting for that you not wanting to go or do is perfectly acceptable, no matter how anybody tries to make you feel about that. I believe it’s human nature to feel compelled to get other people to see things that way that you do. We all do it–when we find out that somebody has an unpopular opinion, we see fit to bring them to the more crowded side. Maybe it is in hopes of “helping” them or maybe it’s just because you want them to share your perspective. We are all more comfortable when we can all agree, right? Wrong! Sometimes, it would be beneficial to ask the invitee, for purposes other than to persuade, what they’re feeling and why they’re feeling it. If anyone bothered to have me clue them in then they would find out that I don’t like the atmosphere that most clubs/bars provide. When I do want to go out, I will be sure to let you know. On most nights, I am perfectly content with Hulu or homework that I neglected throughout the week or a good book or magazine. There’s also the social aspect, being in such an environment can be exhausting. If I have already dealt with my fair share of people, strangers or otherwise, I am not going to be happy at the thought of more human interaction. And sometimes, believe it or not, I just don’t want to go and that’s reason enough for me to not go!

The gift of no is a magnificent thing. It’s the part of you that allows you to say no and not think twice about it. Some people are a tad more apprehensive and can be convinced if they’re asked multiple times, which is okay too. But in either case, the bottom line is the initial answer/feeling. If it’s a no, then ISSA NO!

You may even be reduced to asking yourself, “Am I lame for having a preference for how I want to spend MY weekend?” And I have your answer–no, girl, you most certainly are not! 

The best of friends are those that are understanding of one another’s choices as long as they won’t result in self-destruction or harm. They are also the ones that take no for an answer the first time rather than pushing their agenda. The best of friends are those that realize you have your own thoughts and opinions, but will never stop you from thinking or feeling if it makes you feel good. It will be better for everybody if the choice is honest and true because then nobody can ruin the night with attitude or fights. There are a few exceptions and times where your attendance may be expected or necessary, in which case you may need to compromise. But if it’s not involving major life events then your weekend is in your hands!

Just in case you needed the reminder, your answer being NO is valid and shouldn’t be up for discussion if you do not wish for it to be. That’s in any climate, not just in terms of deciding whether or not to go out. These are tricky times to be going against the grain, but be sure that you’re sticking with what you want to do and not making choices based on what others would rather you did. Whether it’s bar hopping, a pregame event, or being offered just one more drink, you have every right to say no! Stand firm on your rejection, ladies, and gents! I promise the right people will be totally understanding.


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Nia Lewis


My name is Nia which means purpose in Swahili and I am currently finding it and trying to live up to it. I'm a senior at Valdosta State University, my major is Communication Disorders--translation: I am an aspiring Speech-Language Pathologist. Nothing makes me happier than the people I love, affection, a good book, a blank journal, and the beach. I'm sure I left a few things off of the list, but you get the point.
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