Debunking the Greek (Life) Myths

Before I got accepted for the UW, I have always known that I wanted to "rush" (recruitment) for a sorority. Despite my excitement for the time to come, there has always been concern and negativity from people around me. These stereotypes and myths would come from movies and the news based on certain sorority/fraternity chapters, but that would end up creating an image for the WHOLE Greek community. Because of this, there were always people asking me why I wanted to be involved in such an organization that has an "out there" culture. To every negative comment, I have always replied with "you don't know that"; but to be honest, I didn't know that either. I ended up going through recruitment and realized many things surrounding Greek life. That being said, continue reading this listicle if you...

a. Want to get involved but are hesitant because of the things you heard

or

b. Want to know more about Greek life

  1. 1. We're all about the party culture: MYTH

    When people think of being Greek, they think about the social aspect of it. Usually, people have a certain view of frat parties and associate them with things like drinking, drugs, rape, etc. The truth is, yes, there are people that go out a lot and enjoy the partying culture, but there are also plenty of people who prefer to stay inside and not partake in these activities. Some of these activities may happen, but these happen everywhere else outside of the Greek community too. It's just situational and dependant on your environment and the people in that environment. There is no pressure to do anything you don't want to. And even if there is, there'll be people behind your back supporting and defending you. Sororities aren't all about partying. We have certain values that we uphold and care deeply about our academics and philanthropy. For academics, there is usually a certain GPA that each member has to obtain quarterly in order to be in good standing with the house. However, getting bad grades does not define you. There are resources that your sisters can provide to you if you need help or advice. Because there are so many people involved in the Greek community, there will always be someone who can help you with your classes, because chances are, they are probably in your class or have taken that class before. For philanthropy, each chapter has a philanthropy or multiple philanthropies that they support. We raise money for charities and put in all of our effort into these events. 

  2. 2. You're paying for your friends: MYTH

    Yes, there are dues to join a sorority and/or a fraternity. But that doesn't mean that you're paying for your friends. Like every organization out there, dues are essential. These dues usually go towards housing and meal fees, philanthropy and sisterhood events, and others. You can join an organization that you pay for, and still not get along with some people. That is the same in Greek life. Having money does not guarantee that you will make friends easily and quickly. 

  3. 3. You have to be a certain type of girl: MYTH

    One thing I was hesitant about while going through recruitment was the stereotype of having to be the perfect Barbie doll. We all know that a majority of the Greek community are Caucasians and that there are not a lot of minorities. However, that does not mean that you have to change who you are or wish to be someone who you are not. There are girls that are athletic, academic-based, girls that go out a lot, and many more. At the UW, diversity is a huge thing. There are different types of women but that does not block us away from each other. It may seem intimidating at first, but upon joining, there is a realization that most, if not all, are accepting and loving of others. You don't have to be perfect because truthfully, none of us are. It's all about who you want to present yourself as and being confident. Each chapter is different and has a variety of girls. Despite being different in some ways, the sisterhood connects everyone as a whole. 

  4. 4. We haze: MYTH

    There's not much to say about this other than we don't. Why would we haze girls that will become our sisters? Why would these girls stay in this organization if they were hazed? It doesn't make sense to stay in an unhealthy environment and be surrounded by girls that don't like you. There are multiple organizations that have a strict national policy on hazing as well as university policies. 

  5. 5. This lasts forever: TRUTH

    This isn't a bad thing. When they say "Sisterhood is forever. My sisters will be my future bridesmaids", they really mean it. Being a part of this huge organization isn't just for the mere 4 years of college, but beyond. Rather than being forceful, it's more of a choice and connection that we all have with our sisters that make this last long after graduation. 

I am so glad that I went through recruitment and ended up in a chapter that I love very much. All of my sisters in the house and friends in other chapters hold a place very dearly in my heart. So the next time you hear or say negative comments about Greek life, try it out or get to know those involved before assuming and creating stereotypes.