Need somewhere to absolutely lose your shit?

Best places to ugly cry during exam week

It’s exam season, and we all know what that means: a major uptick in public meltdowns at the RUG. So grab your tissues and follow the UKrant to five perfect spots for your latest mental breakdown.
By Megan Embry / Photos by Felipe Silva / Ugly cry face by Valeska Schietinger

You can’t cry at home; you have six roommates. You can’t cry at the library; your screams of despair will only distract everyone else.

But don’t fret. The UKrant has your back with a quick roundup of the best places to ugly cry during exams. We’ve included coordinates for each location so you can find them easily when you really need them.


Eerste tegel

Fourth-floor toilet, UB

embrace your inner Moaning Myrtle

53°13′8″ N  6°33′46″ E

Are you even a RUG student if you haven’t had a breakdown in the fourth-floor bathrooms of the UB? They are roomy enough to accommodate the full-body experience: you can flail, wail, and stress-eat junk food from the vending machines with impunity. No one will judge you, because they all came up here to do the same thing. This is a safe space to explore the boundaries of your self-loathing and despair.

Here you will find comfort in the company of the similarly damned. You aren’t alone; yours is just one voice in a whole choir of misery. As the stalls fill up with your hopeless peers, your ragged gasping hiccups will only add to the strangely therapeutic effect of surround-sound weeping. Honestly, the acoustics in here are excellent.


Cellar, Academy building

death comes for us all

53°13′10″ N  6°33′47″ E

Behind the cafeteria in the cellar of the Academy building is a glass-enclosed hallway that separates the dining area from the service rooms. Step into this small, quiet space where some half dozen man-sized, ancient tombstones hang on the walls commemorating the lives of professors past. Press your hot, tear-ravaged face against the cool, unyielding marble and take heart. This, too, will end. Everything will end.

Exams might seem like life and death right now, but you will have the last laugh. Because someday you will die, and then you will never have to take another exam again.


Cold room, UMCG

you gotta freak out to chill out

53°13′23″ N  6°34′30″ E

There is a ‘cold room’ in UMCG research lab Z2.32 (31.2.32) where RUG scientists store important-looking vials of sciency stuff. If you aren’t a UMCG student, you’ll have to find someone sympathetic enough to sneak you in. But it will be worth it. Have you ever tried crying in a walk-in refrigerator? It’s really… cool.

Slide on one of the lab coats hanging outside and let the heavy, insulated door swing shut behind you. Relax and let it all out. No one can hear you here. Turn the temperature dial down as far as it will go. As the last bit of hope drains out of your eyes and down your face, the tears will slowly freeze into desolate crystals on your cheeks. Salty stalactites of sorrow will form on your chin. Your freakout will eventually chill out as the frigid temps slow your racing heart to the resigned, plodding thump thump thump of complete apathy.

There, there. You are living your truth now; everything is numb. Your outsides are finally as cold and dead as your soul.


Wooded copse, Noorderplantsoen

contemplate your lost childhood

53°13′19″ N  6°33′12″ E

After months of slogging to class in the grey rain, the concurrence of summertime with exam season feels particularly cruel. And the Noorderplantsoen – with its sun-dappled lawns and cheerful picnickers – probably seems like the last place to indulge in a sloppy self-pity session. But just off the sand pit where children scale the red rope-climbing structure, there is a secret spot where you can hide from the unrelenting sunshine and cry in peace.

Slip into this little wooded copse to discover a shadow-world surrounded by a coarse thicket of trees and brush. Here, your howls of anguish will be swallowed up by the happy shrieks of children playing, unaware, only metres away.

How blissfully ignorant they are! They have no idea that their bright childhoods will dissolve, as yours has, into an unbearable parade of multiple-choice questions crafted specifically to break their spirits.


Cupboard under the stairs, Duisenberg building

this is your life now

53°14′20″ N  6°32′4″ E

If you enter through the back of the Duisenberg building on the Zernike campus you’ll find a stairwell next to the bike shed. Underneath is a cupboard just big enough for the average-sized university student who has lost the will to live. Inside are a few spiders, a random pair of funky-smelling sandals, and some musty black slacks left behind by a student who has hopefully gone on to a better place.

As business majors tromp up the stairs overhead – they never cry during exams, by the way, because they are buoyed by the certainty that their studies will one day result in actual employment – you can pretend that a Potter-esque fate awaits you. Maybe the reason you are failing all your exams is because you were never meant for this stupid muggle university to begin with! Maybe one day you will wake up from this bad dream on a fast train to wizarding school, where you will ace all your OWLs and never have to think about your negative BSA ever again.

Or maybe you are actually just sitting in a dusty cupboard with snot streaming into your mouth as you weep silently into someone else’s pants, and this is your life now.


Either way, good luck on exams! We left a box of tissues at each location for you, because we love you and will go the extra mile for you any day.

Upload pictures of your own ugly cry face in your fave spots around town and tag us on instagram @UKrant or drop them in the comments of our Facebook page.  We’ll award our top three with a special UKrant self-care package!


Team UKrant

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