YOU ARE THE ADVICE COLUMNIST: Hating College and Horrid Anxiety

I really don't like the person I have become over the past year, but I have no idea how to go back to being my old driven, bookwom-y self

Oct 28, 2013 at 6:30pm | Leave a comment

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I'm a 21-year-old junior at a liberal arts school (I know, I know, bad life decision) and I'm hating every minute of it. I've always had on/off issues with anxiety, but mid-way through my sophomore year it really spiraled out of control when my mother (my only real family) had a heart attack. Although she's pulled through OK, I spiraled into a fairly deep depression that lasted my entire spring semester. I was able to move past the depression over my summer break, but upon returning to campus this year I started having extreme difficulty concentrating, and have begun having panic attacks. I feel as though I never have a weekend even though I hardly get anything done because I'm so busy trying to crawl out of my own skin. I have never known time to move so fast -- sixteen hours feels like five minutes. I'm pulling all-nighters at least once a week because I spend my entire day procrastinating and panicking.
On top of it all, I've hardly been able to make any friends here. I hate going to parties and don't smoke, drink to excess, or do drugs, which seem to be the primary means of socializing here. My workload (I also have a part-time job) is such that I don't have time for extra-curriculars. I don't feel enthusiastic about any of my classes (though I love my professors), and have no idea what I'm going to do after graduation, or what I even can do with my degree. My biggest aspiration is to graduate and have a roof over my head, but I'm not sure either of those things will be possible if I continue down this path. I'm seeing a therapist and have discussed my anxiety issues with her and my professors, but I'm still getting worse. I really don't like the person I have become over the past year, but I have no idea how to go back to being my old driven, bookwom-y self. Help!

How can you help this college panicked young person? How did YOU get through college? Leave your advice in the comments below, she needs you!

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