Dealing with the Young & Inexperienced

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I get that not everyone that studies abroad is an experienced traveler. I realize that I am one of a small group of people who have traveled as much as I have during my 21 years of life and that many of my peers have never left the country before college. But what I don’t understand is how at the age of 20, some people still can’t act their age. Basically I spent the day in Arezzo, Italy with two of my friends and this other girl that one of them had just met. She was really nice at first, we both go to school up in Massachusetts and have similar interests in movies and television. But after spending some time with her, it just became taxing–she couldn’t do things on her own (she made my friend find a bathroom with her because she couldn’t just go into a cafe and ask herself), she complained constantly about her roommates (actually calling them “the nicer one” and “the mean one”) and she freaked out when we told her that we weren’t going to buy return tickets because we figured that our tickets would still work (when the ticket guy came on the train she was actually¬†fidgeting so bad and she was about to go hide in the bathroom)…I mean come on. Grow up. She comes from a very sheltered background and believe me, I understand that–most of my best friends that I grew up with were extremely sheltered. But unlike my friends, she hasn’t used college in a way to become independent or to find herself–she goes home on the weekends and thinks way too much about what people think about her. I commend her for traveling all the way to Europe, on her own, for an entire semester but I think she needs to do some major searching. Talking to her, I felt like I was much older instead of only a year. It’s amazing how much coddling some people need. I hope that she learns from her experiences here but I have a feeling that she may always be one of those people who just thinks they are the victim.

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