At some point in our lives we’ve all toyed with the idea of being a part of a sorority or fraternity. After all, everyone says that Greek life is exceedingly fun and provides a ton of networking opportunities (not to mention lifelong friends). And yet even when considering its upsides, we have to admit that there are times when sororities, frats and their members are the absolute worst. Below are some reasons why:
Hazing is a pretty immature way of testing someone’s dedication to a group. There’s so many stories out there of straight up gross and uncivilized hazing rituals — all you have to do is go on reddit and you’ll see.
Some sorority girls gossip a ridiculous amount. Some of it’s pretty funny, but most of it’s just irrelevant (and sometimes demeaning) chatter.
There are a lot of rules. Following a lot of rules isn’t fun.
There’s not enough alone time. Being with other people 25/7 gets a little tough, especially for more introverted folks.
Sororities and fraternities are often not as diverse as they claim. We’re not necessarily talking about race or religion here (though we very well could be). Rather, it’s the lack of divergent opinions or interests. Groups tend to attract individuals similar to their existing members, creating an echochamber of like opinions. Unpopular opinions and interests get pushed to the wayside, inhibiting the full development of one’s likes and interests.
Douchey frat boys. You knew this was going to be on here.
There’s a certain culture of exclusivity Greek life embodies. Whenever an organization allows its members to select and reject pledges, it allows uncertain students to seek the elevated status that being a member of Greek life provides. College is a time for self-discovery and acceptance of a new social reality which is radically different from that of high school with its rigid social hierarchies. Attempting to recreate those hierarchies in college seems like an ill-fated attempt to seem “cool” and gives both Greek and non-Greek students a false sense of self-worth based on their insider or outsider status.
It’s a large time commitment, with all of those mandatory meetings and socials.
The houses can be gross. This one doesn’t need much more explanation.
Greek life has the effect of shifting one’s focus away from academics. Sororities and fraternities take up a lot of one’s time, time that could be spent on getting that 4.0.
They stymie one’s development into an independent individual. The groupthink common in frats or sororities often results in passivity, since the common opinion of the group overrides your own. How are you to then develop your own voice, a divergent opinion?
It’s expensive. Thus, it excludes poor college students who can’t afford it. This not only has the effect of decreasing diversity, but also perpetuates a non-inclusive dynamic.
Greek life is based on superficiality. The bonds of brotherhood or sisterhood are forged superficially because a pledge is evaluated in a limited time frame based on their social acuity and/or physical appearance. This lays a foundation of a fragile connection based on acceptable personality traits or level of physical attractiveness, and does not lay the foundation for the profound, deeply impactful social bonds that members of Greek life boast on their Facebook posts.
Greek life certainly has a dark side along with some of its upsides. As a disclaimer, not everything written in this article is true across the board. When we criticize using generalities, we cannot get specific enough to truly depict the problems of something and the nature of those problems. So in any case, peace, love, Clog!
Contact Melany Dillon at [email protected].