I was on the phone tonight w/ a friend of mine who was in a fraternity at a different school. We met thru a mutual (non-Greek) friend, and he has been like a big brother to me, esp. over the last year.
Anyway, we were talking tonight about the guy I like -- a recent BU grad like me-- and how I think this guy (we'll call him NG) should move to DC. And my friend (we'll call him G) asked if NG knew other people than myself in the DC area. G had contemplated moving here last summer, and he said he had a large support group in the area, thru me, thru our mutual friend, and, most importantly, through his fraternity. I thought about that, and I realized that, even tho I'm from DC, I too have a large support group thru Sigma Kappa. If I hadn't had my parents, other relatives, and high school friends to support me and provide a place for me to stay, I certainly could have turned to Sigma Kappa. Several sisters from my chapter are in the area, plus there is an alumnae chapter and two collegiate chapters in the immediate area. G and I felt really lucky and happy to have these ties and this support system.
I felt bad for NG, who doesn't have the same support system here or anywhere other than where he grew up. Perhaps this has made him less adventurous. If I wanted to move to a completely new area of the country, an area where I don't have any relatives or close friends, I would rely on Sigma. If I couldn't find a sister to crash w/, there would inevitably be chapter houses in the area. G felt the same way. I would rely more on my ties w/in the Greek system (both from my school and on the national level) than I would on my non-Greek friends from college. As members of the Greek system, I feel like we are not just bonded to our own sisters, but we see a kindred spirit in all Greeks. Do others feel like this? Do you pity/feel sympathy for those who didn't go Greek who don't have these same bonds?
I know NG has very close bonds w/ his friends from high school and some of his friends from college, but it is not the same national network that we as Greeks can depend on. Does that put him at a disadvantage, esp. if he is shy, if he decides to move to a new place? I guess, looking back at my recently ended college career, I can't imagine not going Greek. The advantages are so clear and so obvious to me that I can't really understand why others don't see them. But I graduated from a large school w/ a small Greek population (7%), and I'm the first person NG knew was in a sorority. (It turned out he knew another of my sisters; he just didn't know she was in a sorority.) I suppose you can go thru college and not feel like you're missing out by not going Greek -- I certainly never thought I'd go Greek -- but, really, I think non-Greeks really did miss out. They just don't know it.
Okay, I'm done w/ my sentimental rant.