Post # 1
I feel like such a wuss posting this but I want some friends I actually like, darn it!!
I came to school not knowing anyone but quickly found a nice group to hang out with…at least, I thought they were nice. I’m a 2L now and my what a year this has been. Everyone in the group was pairing off, then cheating on each other, then pairing off again within the group (I was the only one in a relationship the entire time) then MORE cheating (one guy even tried to get me to cheat on my SO with him!!). They talk about each other behind their backs all the time, then smile and pretend like nothing at all happened when we get together. They skip class and ask dumb gunnery questions just so they won’t get called on and laugh about it. One skipped so much class he failed a course for attendance and we had to spend the entire summer listening to him complain about it, even though his reasons for skipping were along the lines of “he just really NEEDED a two week spring break!” They also make fun of my SO “jokingly” all the time for being shorter than me, calling him an Oompa Loompa and cracking jokes about our sex life and other lovely juvenille antics. They’re just generally unlikeable and I want OUT. I NEVER had to deal with any of this with any of my college or school friends!!
Now here’s my problem. For the past 10 months or so after all the drama started coming out I’ve desperately been trying to find new law students to hang out with. Each of them is as bad as the first. The exact same catty cliquey drama, from people cheating on their partners to cheating on their schoolwork to just being crappy friends (like cancelling four times on going to lunch…once not letting me know until twenty minutes AFTER she was supposed to be there). I found one girl I really liked back in March, but she was a 3L and graduated and moved back to her home state this past May :(. I’ve tried going to mixers with other grad programs, hoping to find a better caliber, but it’s harder to form friendships with people you don’t see that often…meanwhile I’m still hanging out with the A-holes from the first group just to have people to hang out with and the drama just gets worse and worse….
Law student bees, can you relate to any of this or am I just being whiny? I’m seriously worried I am going to loathe my future colleages if they’re coming from this pool of catty cliquey dishonest flaky monsters…
Post # 3
I met my boyfriend and some of my very best friends in law school. I think you are making sweeping broad generalizations about lawyers based on the tools you go to school with and in no way do they represent the entire population of lawyers. Yes, some lawyers are like that. But so are some doctors, accountants, etc.
I think at law school you have a high population of smart but full of themselves people who feed off each other. I think you take some of those people out of the law school setting and they would be fine. The cattiness and the cliques come from hanging out with each other all the damn time and the competition between each other. I think any other professional program would be similar.
But honestly, no, none of my friends were like that in law school and they aren’t like that now that we’re lawyers. I hang out with attorneys from my firm all the time outside of work and there are a few that would fall into that category but most don’t. If i were you, i’d find some friends outside of law school to hang out with instead.
Post # 4
@Krises: Thanks for the reply :). This summer was my first legal job and I was really excited to be able to work with people who didn’t go to my school since most of the other summers were from out of state. Unfortunately, they were awful too :(. I live in the south and they were all from up north and just had the nastiest things to say about southern people, constantly referring to us as rednecks. One of them laughed to our boss (!!!) about his “redneck pick up truck” and how it’s impossible to drive around our parking garage because of “all the huge redneck gas guzzlers that all southerners feel the need to drive.” She even referred to his wife as a redneck and made a comment like she was shocked she was wearing a pair of high fashion shoes because she “didn’t think southerners knew about fashion,” They also wanted me to take them to Charleston since it might be their only chance to go and I lived down there when I was in college so I knew the area. What a disastor. I worked so hard planning the perfect itenary based on what each of them wanted to do and they did nothing but complain about how hot it was (it’s the summer in Charleston, what did you expect??) and make condescending remarks about how our shops and resteraunts were SOOOO UGLY and SOOOO GROSS compared to the ones up north. Also our farmer’s market was “too small” and “too crowded” and the museums were SOOOO BORING. I took them to an awesome barbeque place and none of them would touch their food, they made me take them to Wendy’s :(. All the way back they talked about how they couldn’t wait to get out of “the middle of nowhere” and I just wanted to scream “THEN LEAVE WE WON’T MISS YOU!”
I remember crying to my boyfriend after that that if this is what lawyers like I might seriously reconsider the profession. I want to be proven wrong so bad but everywhere I turn it’s like I meet more and more jerks.
Post # 5
I didn’t go to law school,but Fiance did, and I never ever observed or heard anything like this from any of him or his friends. He’s really close with most of them still, and I don’t think he would be if they acted like people you described.
It sounds like you need to find a new group with decent people!
Post # 6
This was not my experience at all with law school or the legal profession. I met some of my best friends in law school and felt I connected with them better than anyone I met in undergrad. I don’t work in an office with other people my age now, but when I interned I always had good relationships with those around me. I was aware that there was a lot of hooking up going on and stuff like what you describe in law school (which I always described as basically high school with credit cards), but I had a bf and most of the people I hung out with were attached so it wasn’t really part of my experience.
Post # 7
I felt this way about a lot of peEople I went to law school with. Eventually I did find a few people to study with and hang out a little with. I had a lot of non law school friends while I was in school too. I have lots of lawyer friends now. It’s easier once you’re out of law school I think.
Post # 8
I didn’t go to law school either but I have a friend in law school and he is not like that at all. I haven’t heard stories of the school being like this either yet but he has only been there a few weeks.
I did go to a wedding and there were a large group of people that were law students and they were snooty and wouldn’t even talk to me or Darling Husband even though we sat at the same table. I wouldn’t say it is because of law school but some people are jerks and like to think they are better than everyone. I hope you are able to find some friends that actually treat you like a friend.
As for the comments about the south, I’ve been on vacation near Charleston and thought the area was beautiful, everyone was so friendly there, and there were all the cute shops and cafes that lined the street. Was it hot?, yes but thats what you get for going south in the summer.
Post # 9
I had a similar experience in law school. I made more friends in law school than I did in college (including my soon-to-be husband!) and I do keep in touch with those friends. However, I found “younger” law students and young attorneys to be an interesting breed. The only way I can describe it is this mentality that because they are law students or young attorneys, they are better than everyone else and there seems to be this constant need to impress everyone with that fact. Also, quite a few of my fellow law students reverted to high school levels of drama and behavior which I just didn’t understand. They also tended to be highly critical of others and, at times, conniving.
Now, when I run into people I recognize but didn’t really associate with in law school, I try to keep my distance because I don’t want to be reminded of all that crap. I never enjoyed gossiping about people or pretending to be friends with someone simply in order to use them. But somehow, that makes me the weird one, from what I’ve heard…
Post # 10
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
Meh. I just showed up for class and then went home to my family. I wasn’t into the drama either and thankfully most of my class consisted of older, nontraditional students so that significantly cut down on the drama. It makes it harder to study because you don’t have study groups to fall back on but in the real world of lawyering (as I like to call it based on HIMYM) you don’t always have a group of people to study with and you have to rely on yourself and your limitations.
I am in contact with a few students that I graduated with and respected but for the most part I don’t hang out with any of them. I do like the local women’s bar association but I am afraid to join because I feel that once you join you start learning all of the politics of the group. My job is pretty solitary; since we’re really corporate attorneys, there are only two attorneys in my department. It does get a bit lonely but I prefer it to the politics of an office with a lot of attorneys; plus, no billable hours (yay!)
And yes, where lawyers are from affects their behavior. I live in the central Florida area and lawyers in my area are very different from northeastern U.S. lawyers and Miami lawyers. We have a lot more comraderie because it’s a smaller community of lawyers and judges so it’s easier to develop a bad reputation for inappropriate or unethical behavior.
Post # 11
My law school friends were amazing. Almost my entire class was pretty close and chill, and there was none of that behavior that I knew of.
Another class when we were there, however, was kind of terrible. It just depends on the people, I don’t think it can be pigeonholed into lawyers/law students in general.
Post # 12
I’m glad it’s not just me…do y’all have advice for how to make friends outside of law school? There aren’t many inter-professional school mixers and I’m at that school most days from 8 am to 6 pm so it’s hard to escape the law students. It’s so bad I’ve taken to hiding out on the third floor to eat my lunch because if I’m even sitting in the lobby minding my own business, someone will come up to me and within five minutes they’re talking about someone else or spreading nasty rumors. And yes the average age of my entering class was 24 so we are a very, very young group, mostly straight out of college. Very few outliers age-wise and most of the older students make a beeline for the door as soon as class ends (whether because they have families or other responsibilities or because they feel the same way about my fabulous peers as I do I’m not sure).
Post # 13
I wasn’t crazy about the other law students in my law school, but I LOVE my colleagues now. In law school, I didn’t socialize much and always felt really awkward when I did. But the people I work with now are fantastic. Just hang in there – it gets better!
Post # 14
It’s hard to find nice people, and I got lucky. I found a small group of wonderful girls to hangout/study with in law school. I’m closer to them than my non-law school friends now. I think law school thickens your skin quite a bit and you’re less able to tolerate BS from people. My law school friends are the only friends I can be blunt and harsh and straight to the point with and not have to worry about hurting their feelings. I have to beat around the bush a little more around my non law school friends or they may start crying.
It really is hard to find nice people though; I did bounce around a couple months before finding a nice group. I think it’s important to find a few colleagues to be friends with though. These are the people you will continue to work with after graduation.
Post # 15
@Dizbee: You are not being whiny. That was my EXACT experience in law school. I made about 3 friends from that. And I met my Fiance after I graduated, but we went to the same school. All the friends I made friends with felt the same way about the rest of the people.
That’s not likely to change once you start working. Contrary to popular belief, law school and real life is much like high school all over again. Cliques, drama, cheating. It’s terrible. I have very few friends that I met through law school. My friends from work are just that – work friends. I just have very little time for my own, true lifelong friends to start making new ones, but while work isn’t as bad as law school was.. it’s still political like that. I don’t know if I’m explaining myself correctly.
Personally, I think it’s much better to have a few very good friends than a lot of bleh friends.
Don’t try to make friends in law school. Do try to make time for the friends you already have and love.
ETA: A bunch of my friends have joined running or sports group to make friends. Have you considered doing that? Maybe find some sort of hobby that you like and a place where other people of that hobby or activity meet up?
Post # 16
Not a law student or a lawyer, but a dear friend is, and this sounds very similar to her experience, minus the hooking up and plus gunnery nastiness and competition. She really didn’t find many people to click with in school, and it’s been uneven in her work life (loved her clerkship, hated BigLaw).
I actually met her through her husband, who is in my graduate program. Our group of friends was definitely her closest circle while they were here. Basically…I suggest looking outside the law school for good friends.
On another note, though, another close friend just graduated from a different law school, and made really good friends in her program, and in various social justice causes connected to the larger university. So don’t lose hope entirely! But diversify. 🙂