The days of living off nothing but smart-priced noodles, frozen pizzas and scrambling after every last penny seem to have vanished.
The more recent exuberance of university lifestyles often brings a stigma, and in some sense an expectation, of the day-to-day lives of male students.
To me, there’s a monotony in the hobbies and conversations between male students involving sex, alcohol and the gym.
Society has created a perception of this ‘lad’ student.
We all know them: the type of people who thoroughly enjoy losing consciousness to the wrath of vodka, walk around clubs in packs, and spend too much time on their physical appearance. I think it’s common, and fair enough. But when it comes to other people being judged and labelled due to the behaviour of the minority, it’s a step too far.
We’re required to tolerate verbal abuse from other boys, whether it’s due to appearances or lifestyles, and let them get away with it. Just label the insults as ‘banter’, and then carry on - everyone does it.
The hottest topic of the day would be the echo of how many tens of kilograms each of their muscles were forced to lift today or how drunk they got last night. Are they proud?
Or do they do this to state their dominance?
It pressures other guys that may not share the same values to partake in heavy drinking or general idiotic behaviour that would otherwise be uncharacteristic of them.
University is all about the social aspects as well as the education, but when people start mocking and insulting others because of differences in social activities and views, a stand needs to be made.
If you don’t adhere to the criteria set by these ‘lads’ then you’re inferior. If you’re unable to down your drink and sleep with that girl then you become oppressed.
I find it offensive when boys are expected to materialise girls, and act in certain ways, because of the portrayal of stereotypes in the media.
Are we supposed to behave like that, even if it’s not entirely what we want? It can be hard to say no.
It’s getting to the stage where ‘students’ behave wildly because they think they need to; it’s expected of them because they’re ‘students’, not because it’s their own will.