I can relate to how you feel. The first year out of college was one of the lowest times in my life. In college, I felt like successes were around every corner, whereas when the working life started, it just seemed like one big black hole. I took a finance job which I essentially flunked out of after 6 months (all commission, sales job), leaving me without enough cash to pay rent. Within one week I lost my job, found a subletter on Craigslist, left all my friends and college memories behind, moved in with mom, and took a job washing dishes. I eventually reached a slightly better position after paying off my credit card and getting some money back into savings, moving in to my own apartment, and finding a $15/hour job.
Still, that job was where I found ERE, so I was still missing a great deal of "something" in that situation. Like you, one of the biggest improvements to my happiness was when I met someone to spend time with. The next big spike was when I moved to China and went from 40 hours/week to 15 hours/week. I still dread the day if/when I go back to the US/accept a job where I have to work 40 hours/week again.
Work-life is a lot different than college-life. I don't know about you, but I truly enjoyed my major. So at least all the hours spent studying and researching and writing essays was on a topic matter I appreciated. My job was mindless and I had good friends at it so we joked around all shift, making it a breeze. Outside of that, it was attending classes and hanging out with friends. Making the switch from that to working 40 hours at something that is generally at best mildly interesting, a new city where you don't know anyone, and the typical job that doesn't really have huge successes a la "I got an A on my paper!" or "I made dean's list" or even "I learned something
" is a rough transition.
TLDR; if you don't love what you're doing, do it less while cutting expenses to still maintain a decent savings rate. Spend more time and energy on current or new relationships, and your own personal hobby/interests/studies. Of course, that's my advice, I'm sure the wiser advice would be to power through the best (see highest-earning) job you can for 4-5 years and find solace in that your timeline for doing so is a fraction of what the average American's is. It's not something I could do then, though, and still don't know that I could or would want to now.