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Should I drop out of Cambridge?

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    It doesn't matter if you're lazy, as long as the work eventually gets done and you get a result you're happy with then don't worry about your studying techniques. I'm similar to you - do work at the last minute but somehow pull it off, whilst my friends may spend weeks doing the same work and get a similar grade. A lot of people in Cambridge may not be naturally super-intelligent but work hard, you don't need to compare yourself to them as you are obviously smart and work to your own rhythm so stop putting pressure on yourself! I will echo what the others have said - you sound like you have depression and are feeling a little worthless. Cambridge chose you because you are obviously gifted - I think you should get through the year and reconsider everything after exams. If you are really not enjoying it and you've been depressed since being there then don't feel bad about leaving and applying to another university you'll enjoy more - your health is worth more than any piece of paper at the end of the day.



    (Original post by -jessica)
    You're being really nice.. I shouldn't be getting kind comments though, I've essentially been lazy the past few weeks.

    It doesn't matter if they think I'm capable, I'm not. My director of studies honestly felt sorry for me because of my background so gave me a shot. You probably won't believe that but its true.

    I wrote them down a while ago.. I don't even want to look at the list. Its very long.

    I know. I've thought that every single time I've started working, and usually I actually enjoy it and curse myself for not giving myself enough time to do it properly. I forget that though. I've had 3 weeks to work and I'm only starting now I've literally done one essay, thats it. And it was terrible..

    I might make a new list and do the most important things.. I just dont see the point though- theres so much material to cover that I'm already going to fail.

    It kinda is a biggie.. most have finished most things.

    I'm doing phys natsci.
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    If you're going through hell, keep going. It'll be worth while in the end x
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    I can't just 'stop being so self hating', it's not that easy. I've had a deep self-loathing for almost as long as I can remember and its gotten progressively worse, much more so since starting at Cambridge.
    I don't know, I find it hard to talk about problems and we weren't making any progress. She was latching on to the fact that I did x small amount of work and congratulating me for it. And there are a lot of silences that I really can't cope with.

    I'm going to set an early alarm and try and work all of tomorrow and finish a chunk of work. If I can just concentrate it will be okay (relatively speaking.. for the situation I'm in) but I know I'm gonna end up in a bad place. The closer it gets to going back time the worse I'm gonna get and I'm worried about what I'm going to do I don't expect anyone to understand it (I don't) but when I get in that state i just do stupid stuff.
    How many sessions have you had? I didn't like it for the first couple of times I went, but once I got used to it I started to find them more helpful and less awkward, and the 'silences' decreased.
    Do you have any close friends you can talk to if you feel like you're about to 'do stupid stuff'? If not, maybe try calling a helpline or something...

    In the end, the only person who can stop the situation you're in is you. I know it's hard, and it feels like there's no way out, but if you truly want it to end then you have to make it end.

    If you didn't like counselling, maybe you should give this site a try:
    http://moodgym.anu.edu.au/welcome
    It was quite helpful for me, at least
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    Yep. You can email your personal tutor, or ask the academic registry for a withdrawal form.
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    (Original post by XxelliexX)
    How many sessions have you had? I didn't like it for the first couple of times I went, but once I got used to it I started to find them more helpful and less awkward, and the 'silences' decreased.
    Do you have any close friends you can talk to if you feel like you're about to 'do stupid stuff'? If not, maybe try calling a helpline or something...

    In the end, the only person who can stop the situation you're in is you. I know it's hard, and it feels like there's no way out, but if you truly want it to end then you have to make it end.

    If you didn't like counselling, maybe you should give this site a try:
    http://moodgym.anu.edu.au/welcome
    It was quite helpful for me, at least
    I'm not exactly sure, maybe 5. One of which was useful (when i eventually told her about my eating issues). However I'm a 'healthy' weight now so she assumes I have recovered, and keeps telling me how great I am for gaining the weight and saying I should feel so proud for doing that!

    I dunno, the only 'real' friendships I have (in which I feel the other person actually knows a little about my issues) are with a few people from Cambridge and I distanced myself from them last term.

    And to be honest, when i'm feeling like that I don't really want help at all.

    Thanks, I'll try it.
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    (Original post by i-sure-hope-so)
    I feel exactly the same as you, except from I'm not at cambridge, i'm at bristol, and i feel so thick all the time. I havent been assed to do any work, deliberately dont turn up to things and generally **** up my education just because I believe I can't do it. This has genuinely been one of the ****tiest years of my life and I know I am going to fail my exams. I really don't see a future for me in anything and I don't even know why they accepted me onto the programme. I'm just a waste of space and even tried to kill myself just before starting uni. Didn't work what a shame. Now I have upcoming exams and I don't know how the hell I'm going to pass. I wish they would just hurry up and kick my lazy ass off the course. I've literally spent half the year crying and it's generally been ****.

    Sorry that wasn't really advice just burdening you with my problems.
    No it's good to hear from someone going through a similar thing (though I'm not glad you're going through it).
    I tried to do the same at christmas (I wasn't exactly sure if it would work or not), which just resulted in me being very ill for the first week back. Its such a selfish thing to do and I hate myself for it.. I sometimes wish I just hadn't been born in the first place, then I wouldn't have wasted so much of my parents time and money, and no one would have to deal with it afterwards and get upset.
    I don't see myself having any kind of future either. I'm really just wasting space right now.. My life isn't going to contribute anything to anyone. There are people so much worse off than me and it makes me hate myself more.
    I don't know if it would be helpful but if you want to talk you can PM me.
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    (Original post by BigVitaminD)
    Yep. You can email your personal tutor, or ask the academic registry for a withdrawal form.
    Is there a simple withdrawal form? I'm not sure there is..

    I spoke to my tutor last term.. he said if i needed anything to go talk to him (as if I could do that) because he 'didn't want to lose me'. He actually said those words. The tutors have a distorted view of me. If i email him he's going to try and help rather than just let me leave. He might ask me to degrade even.

    I appreciate the advice though, thank you.
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    (Original post by i-sure-hope-so)
    I feel exactly the same as you, except from I'm not at cambridge, i'm at bristol, and i feel so thick all the time. I havent been assed to do any work, deliberately dont turn up to things and generally **** up my education just because I believe I can't do it. This has genuinely been one of the ****tiest years of my life and I know I am going to fail my exams. I really don't see a future for me in anything and I don't even know why they accepted me onto the programme. I'm just a waste of space and even tried to kill myself just before starting uni. Didn't work what a shame. Now I have upcoming exams and I don't know how the hell I'm going to pass. I wish they would just hurry up and kick my lazy ass off the course. I've literally spent half the year crying and it's generally been ****.

    Sorry that wasn't really advice just burdening you with my problems.

    Oh and I know it looks like I'm being a total dick not even putting myself in your shoes, and that's not what I'm trying to do, just believe me, I have spent so many long hours emotionally draining myself trying to help my best friends and my family member, even right through the night, that I'm not even sure if I know how to help another person anymore. If I had the right words to tell you then I would. All the words you think are the right words to change someone never really are - you can empower them, but at the end of the day the power to change lies in that person, and in no one else's words. All I can say to you is stick with it, for now - and if you will, then I will. It may sound wrong but reading your experience has sort of empowered me in away because your words resonate so much with my own self-negative thoughts. Give the exams your best shot, from now on. Because later on down the line, you can never reproach yourself for giving it your best shot. You did what you can with the resources and 'raw material' available to you at the time. Just be your ****ing strongest and give it your best shot.

    I always listen to this, it sort of empowers me somehow... just go with all his lyrics about moving on, becoming a bigger person, and I hope it makes you change. Promise to give it your best shot, and I will?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j5-yKhDd64s&ob=av3e

    P.s. I just think in life you sometimes have to go with the fact that there may well be negative consequences to your actions, and that everything may fall apart somewhere down the line, but you have to have the strength to overcome that. I mean, I know that I could well fail this year, even after re-takes and find myself in 'limbo' but that doesn't change the fact that I am trying, you know... you just have to be strong enough to say what the hell and give it your best shot. I hope this helps, I hope you find it within yourself to over-ride all the setbacks

    x
    (Just saw the edit)

    Thank you. You're right..

    I'm going to try (starting tomorrow, I'm a little intoxicated now) and honestly will be happy if I just pass this year. The problem is nobody else will be happy with that. My friends all talk about firsts, and 2:1s are like what they consider a bad result. My DoS expects me to get a 2:1. If I get a third and tell people, they'll feel sorry for me or laugh at me even. If I fail then god knows what they would do.. Worst thing is they post everyone's results, in order of best to worst.

    A secret dream of mine is to just move abroad somewhere and get a really basic, ordinary job.. and just study from books and stuff in my own time. I actually love physics, but I get so stressed that I can't even open the textbooks now. It doesn't make ANY sense... Everything I do is counterintuitive.
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    Stop fishing for compliments.

    <3 x
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    (Original post by LETSJaM)
    Stop fishing for compliments.

    <3 x
    How exactly am i doing that? I'm being honest, and nothing I have said deserves a compliment. Insults are more likely..
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    How exactly am i doing that? I'm being honest, and nothing I have said deserves a compliment. Insults are more likely...
    Because whinging about how you got into CAMBRIDGE isn't asking for it.

    Yes. Because (most) TSRians have sense and get p*ssed off when someone post saying "Oh I don't know how I got into (any top uni) I'm really not that clever as it's clearly bull.

    <3 x
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    (Just saw the edit)
    My friends all talk about firsts, and 2:1s are like what they consider a bad result. My DoS expects me to get a 2:1. If I get a third and tell people, they'll feel sorry for me or laugh at me even. If I fail then god knows what they would do.. Worst thing is they post everyone's results, in order of best to worst.
    "Don't worry about what anyone else is doing, concentrate on yourself."
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    (Original post by LETSJaM)
    Because whinging about how you got into CAMBRIDGE isn't asking for it.

    Yes. Because (most) TSRians have sense and get p*ssed off when someone post saying "Oh I don't know how I got into (any top uni) I'm really not that clever as it's clearly bull.

    <3 x
    I know it probably seems like that, but I promise its not bull. Maybe I was close to being smart enough when I applied (when I actually worked hard) but I've messed up so much and got myself into this situation by generally doing self-destructive things.
    Maybe I shouldn't have said that it was cambridge. But the fact that it is has a lot to do with why I'm more depressed now than ever... I mean, imagine being surrounded by people that are infinitely cleverer than you are and do x-teen number of extra-curriculars and cope just fine, when you do nothing and struggle at that. I can't be proud of being at Cambridge when I'm going to fail my first year...
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    ...I can't be proud of being at Cambridge when I'm going to fail my first year...
    If you want to pass this year, then you need to quit that attitude.
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    I know it probably seems like that, but I promise its not bull. Maybe I was close to being smart enough when I applied (when I actually worked hard) but I've messed up so much and got myself into this situation by generally doing self-destructive things.
    Maybe I shouldn't have said that it was cambridge. But the fact that it is has a lot to do with why I'm more depressed now than ever... I mean, imagine being surrounded by people that are infinitely cleverer than you are and do x-teen number of extra-curriculars and cope just fine, when you do nothing and struggle at that. I can't be proud of being at Cambridge when I'm going to fail my first year...
    I think we are slight similar. I've got an offer from cambridge but I don't think I deserve it. ( My admission test scores were average and I think may be the director of study
    took pity on me because I was in a traffic accident recently and I'm state schooled from a low income family.) I've been really negative recently, didn't do any work over easter and just generally procrastinated on the internet, all the while thinking I might miss my offer, and yet the more scared I am of missing it, the less I worked. It really is a vicious cycle. The worst bit is once you're stuck like this you lose confidence fast and think you'll never stop self hindering because you've done it all last year.

    I think reading this bit from a book helped me, it's a bit wacky. basically the protagonist has been a time waster and non achiever all his life and he had a dream where he became a young bird in a nest half way up a cliff and he can't yet fly. His mother tried to encourage him, but he was scared of falling to his death and couldn't make the move. Having tried everything his mother gave up and left him to die. As he got weaker and weaker from hunger, he realised that it made no logical sense, He is dying to avoid death, so he took the leap. I think this applies me too. It makes no logical sense to make yourself fail because you're scared of failing.

    Having established that, I think it might help to make a detailed but manageble time table, remove everything that might distract you from working, and get your friends and family to nag you so you stick to it. You can still turn this around, just forget about everything that's already happened, it's in the past and you can't do anything about it. Make a fresh start tommorow. And as to whether you deserve to be at cambridge, that's in the past and it wasn't your decision to make. Just make the best of this oppurtunity which you worked hard for and be positive and work hard, it will pay off.
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    I know it probably seems like that, but I promise its not bull. Maybe I was close to being smart enough when I applied (when I actually worked hard) but I've messed up so much and got myself into this situation by generally doing self-destructive things.
    Maybe I shouldn't have said that it was cambridge. But the fact that it is has a lot to do with why I'm more depressed now than ever... I mean, imagine being surrounded by people that are infinitely cleverer than you are and do x-teen number of extra-curriculars and cope just fine, when you do nothing and struggle at that. I can't be proud of being at Cambridge when I'm going to fail my first year...
    Hi, here are some things to think about, hopefully you can work towards getting a better mindset and relieving all that stress and depression (I genuinely know what it feels like, and it is bad but there are things you can do).

    1. Getting bad grades at/dropping out of university is always going to be disappointing, no doubt about that, but it is not the end of the world. You have plenty of time to do things with your life. Us young folk are going to live for god knows how long and after we start work it will probably be a long long time before we retire. What happens during a few years of your life, in the grand scheme of things, isn't detrimental to your whole life plan.

    2. If you do drop out, I presume you must have strong grades so you could apply to a host of other excellent universities. Admissions officers won't mind at all that you dropped out, not that you have to tell them either. Everyone makes mistakes in life but if you drop out, your options are very wide. Many people around you will not mind that you dropped out either. I know many people from my old school who dropped out of university and re-applied, and nobody really cares. The 'stigma' gets old fast.

    3. It's easy to get down and think you are an intellectual runt among super-robot intelligent people, but that is not the case 99.9% of the time. The people you think are geniuses will have their insecurities and anxieties. It is easy to talk casually about 1st's and 2.1's but you don't know what really goes on in their minds, just remember though that they are human.

    4. Talk to someone, such as your tutor. Chances are they will be understanding and can offer you some advice and words of encouragement. If they are a snob, visit someone else in your department or seek someone from your university's support network. They are there to help you, and talking to someone about your problems can really help replenish your confidence in your capacity to study and perform well in exams.

    5. With all this in mind, have a go at the work. I know it may all seem insourmountable, but that's what university is like. No matter how much work there is, take things one step at a time, pace yourself, and you will get there eventually. Work hard, but don't burn yourself out either.
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    I don't know if this helps, but the thing about being in this situation is that with all the help, encouragement and support in the world (and there is plenty available at Cambridge, where the thinking is 'get 'em and keep 'em', which is exactly why I applied) you still have the final say in whether you stay or go. This is actually terrifying if you've not experienced it in other contexts before: no-one can make you stay.

    It stops you (me) thinking 'if only someone could help me enough, then I wouldn't have to go'. Even with the best help, you could still decide to leave. Your willpower just wants something to do - and you want a way out of the hurt. But it might not be the best way out.

    You feel trapped - yes? The way out of this is to choose to do something, and continue choosing - to work (whenever you can), to talk to tutors, counsellors, etc. I promise you this is key.

    You love physics - that in itself sounds like reason enough to stay here in this supportive environment and stick with your course. If you had no interest in your course to start with, that'd be a bad sign and I wouldn't be writing this post. Logically, Cambridge even sounds like an easier/better option than finding a different university or a middle-of-nowhere job (the grass is always greener). You can still research other options, though - it probably will help. Make any decisions you do make on the basis of plenty of information and lists of pros/cons.

    NB get your depression on record if you haven't already. See an understanding GP either at home or in Cambridge or both - if your concerns are dismissed by anyone, ask to see someone different (mental health care is ****e). You need and deserve good care.
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    ...
    Hey, I'm a second year Phys Nat Sci and I completely empathise - it's a very tough course and everyone feels overwhelmed by it. I can guarantee though; your DoS didn't give you an offer because they felt sorry for you, but because they saw potential in you.

    If you're predicted a 2.i by your DoS, who I imagine has taught many students, then they know what they're talking about.

    My advice would be to keep seeing the counselling service through exams (to be honest, I wish I'd seen them last year), and remember that you got a place because you deserve to. Also, it's very different from A levels where you need to understand every question on the paper and pretty much be able to do them perfectly. To get a good 2.i in Cambridge, you need to get 2/3 of the marks.

    Not doing work in the vac is understandable, too... no-one does as much as they think they should! (Case in point; me sitting on TSR when I have plenty to be getting on with...)

    What college are you at? If you would like any advice, PM me and I'm happy to talk I know how tough it is and without some of my friends I wouldn't have got through first year, let alone be nearly done with second year.

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    My mum has just basically told me that I'm a waste of space and just cause her problems.. and she's not wrong. I was working but now I'm just a wreck..
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    (Original post by -jessica)
    My mum has just basically told me that I'm a waste of space and just cause her problems.. and she's not wrong. I was working but now I'm just a wreck..
    :jumphug:

    Your mum is wrong. Don't pay any attention to her :console:

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