Joshua Rappeneker / flickr
Before we begin, we’d like to remind you to submit your questions, comments, concerns, and queries right here. And now: in this week’s installment of Just Ask Emily, our readers just have a lot of feelings.
So there’s this girl (isn’t there always?). Long story short, we were good friends, then we were friends with benefits, then it all fell apart. We both want to be friends again, but how do I get over her? We’re in a lot of the same classes and activities, so it would be awkward to stop seeing her for a while, but I’m not sure how to get over her while in continued contact. And I really do want to be her friend.
Dear Just Friends,
I don’t want to tell you that you cannot be friends with this girl (because that sounds crazy, mean, and crazy mean). I do, however, want to strongly urge you to give yourself time. There’s no magic recipe for getting over someone, and, if there were, the ingredients would already be sold out of every store.
Do I think you should stop seeing her entirely? No, of course not. You shouldn’t drop classes or quit clubs. Quite the opposite. You should act like a nice, normal person to her when you see her. You should act as though you feel the way you want to feel—that is, someone with whom she is friendly and only friendly—around her. You should also give yourself the space to feel the way you actually do. If you do both, perhaps, in time, the way you feel and the way you want to feel will—wait for it!—feel like one and the same.
My roommates and I are getting really anxious about graduating and leaving Columbia behind forever. Are there any life-stage thresholds that won’t be impossibly painful to cross??? Please advise!
Dear Fretful Senior,
I could have written and submitted your question myself (don’t worry, reader, I didn’t). And as I, too, am but a Fretful Senior, I can’t say if there will ever be any major life thresholds that aren’t impossibly painful to cross. I can say, however, that the only choice you have is to cross them. Yes, impending graduation is incredibly weird in ways that I cannot begin to articulate in words (or charades). But none of that is going to stop graduation from approaching, nor should it stop you from proudly donning that cap and gown with a smile.
We are going to graduate in a couple of months, whether or not you and your roommates freak out about it. I know it’s hard, but try not to waste these next couple of months freaking out. Go to and learn in your classes. Hit up Senior Nights and Lerner Pubs. Spend time with your friends talking about anything but post-graduation plans. In short: no matter what you or I or any of us do, our time here is going to come to a quickly approaching end. Try not to spend what’s left of yours worrying about how little there is left.
Emily Tamkin is a Columbia College senior and a former Spec editorial page editor who would like to take this line to wish you all a very happy Spring Break (whooo, Cabo, party, etc.).