My Life

I am a 17 year old A-Level student and I would like to share my life problems here, as I don't have any other outlet.

I am currently studying towards my end of year exams and am under massive stress to do well. I'm predicted high A's in my subjects, but I face constant criticism wherever I turn because of it. My teachers say I need to be doing better, my parents constantly pressure me to do better, people in my classes call me a nerd and laugh at me. When I try to talk about a subject to my teacher's at the end of school they try and leave as quick as possible while ignoring me. I have no real friends. I switched schools because of the relentless bullying and emotional torment, and it still haunts me. The other day someone from my old school tweeted me saying I was a chloroform rapist. I used to get that every single day at my old school. People say that being in a small school makes bullying less prominent; they're wrong. All I remember is being unable to turn around a corner without having abuse shouted at me for my ginger hair, my voice, my accent, my looks, whatever insult they'd managed to come up with. I've never had a proper girlfriend; every girl I've ever liked has turned me down. One time at school, the whole year found out I liked a girl and I got bullied for that months afterwords. She screamed at me and called me "a fucking weirdo". The only friendships I have are over the internet, as the people I meet are as lonely in the real life as I am. My own parents don't understand me; my Dad accuses me of never relaxing because I'm teetotal. I once dieted to lose a bit of fat and my Mum screamed at me for being "anorexic" and threatened to hit me and throw me out if I didn't stop.

The only friend I have at college is a girl who's incredibly sweet, but we only talk during our History classes and on facebook, as she's "popular" and her friends and boyfriend don't want me sitting with them. I went on a law class at a Uni and everyone avoided me; I didn't learn a single person's name. The lecturer told me to not bother applying. I'm part of a discussion group that is supposed to help us prepare for Uni by debating, but everyone thinks I'm weird. At the last discussion they were all sniggering at me. I find it difficult to make or maintain relationships with people. I can't do small talk.

Most of the time I cry myself to sleep. I think about the loneliness, the torment, the laughing, the strange looks. I feel like an outcast. A few people have said I'm very intelligent; to me that's brought me nothing but sadness and pain. I have no emotional connections with anyone, I get bullied because of it, I can't talk to anyone. I just want someone to talk to, someone who understands it all. I want someone who's there for me, someone I can confide in, someone who loves me like I love them. Is that too much to ask?

26 Replies

  • Hi Lyreco,

    Thank you for posting and I'm sorry you feel so bad. I was in a very similar situation to yourself as I had a lot of pressure on me with my final exams. I didn't have many friends in school either and did not know anyone when I went to university. I met people through group work and seminars so you never know you could make some good friends this way. Have you though about joining any clubs or societies where people would share a common interest with you? This is something that made a huge difference to me.

    Is there anyone at all you could confide in? Such a family member you are close to? I would suggest going along to your GP and telling them how you feel. I know this can seem scary but remember they have seen lots of cases like this before and they will take you seriously. They may recommend some CBT. Another good therapy to try is mindfulness. Feel free to have a look around the Action on Depression website at all the option available to you. Good luck and do keep in touch.

  • I used to play for a Rugby team, but I never really fit in. There aren't many groups or clubs near where I live, only things like Sports which I'm not really interested in. I don't really like anyone in my own family, they're all incredibly ignorant and self-contained. I don't know I would meet a GP or a counsellor without my parents finding out, they always want to know where I am, and I'm afraid they won't take me seriously and they'll think I'm just an attention seeking teenager :/

  • This sounds just like my daughter. She was bullied heaps because, basically, she was very bright and didn't conform. She refused to bow to the peer pressure.She did have a group of friends and they were all the 'outcasts' at school but a great bunch of girls. She found support with them. Her way of dealing with her bullies was to work as hard as she could and beat them at all the subjects at school. She came top of the school in her last year. She has had some depression problems in life because of the bullying. I must admit that, as parents, we placed no pressure on her but just to do as well as she could.... maybe that is pressure?? As an end note, she now has a VERY good job which pays very well and is happily married to a lovely man. So, you keep on hanging in there and show those bullies what you are capable of . Do you have a counsellor at school or a relative you can talk to ??? I used to talk to my Aunt, she was great. Even Samaritans or Youthline are good people to talk to. And you can always come on here and vent. All the very best to you. xx

  • P.S. She enjoyed University as she was with like minded people who were on, and above , the level where she was at. And made some good friends there. xx

  • Thank you for that Jeff, I'm trying as hard as I can to get the best grades so I can go to Uni and move away. I don't really get along with any of my family, and I don't know anyone I could confide in. I might go to the samaritans or youthline soon, I just need someone to talk to :/ and I know, I'm looking forward to Uni for that. Thank you for this, means a lot. xx

  • You are always welcome here. Nobody will ever judge you, or make you feel silly or unwanted. This is a really friendly forum and you will find lots of people to chat to. What subjects are you studying? My memory of a-levels is that they were harder than my degree!

  • Thank you so much, that's so kind. I'm studying Law, History, Chemistry and English Literature. They may be, they're not intellectually difficult now, it's essentially a system of who can remember the best, it's pretty flawed. I'm looking forward to doing a Law degree, going to try and do a 4 year MA with a year abroad in America, studying a subject I'm genuinely passionate about. What degree did you do?

  • I did a Primary Education degree and now I'm a teacher. A year in America sounds amazing! You've got a lot to look forward to :)

  • That sounds realy great and you are obviously looking to the future. Just hang on in there with your A levels and you will soon be out inthe wide world and having fun at Uni.

    By the way to all, my nickname is rather misleading as it is Jeffju, my husband's name and mine joined. Silly really, but I am female. ..and it gives the impression I am male. I will see if I can change it.

  • I know, it's just tough times at the moment. One more year to go and then I'm moving on. Ah, fair enough then, I didn't realise!

  • Hi Lyreco - I'm sorry for the tough time you're having at the moment. A levels are very pressurising arn't they? I am 18 and about to take my final exams, with my Mum nagging at when and where to do work despite the fact that I know myself best, know when and where my mind works best, know when I'm tired and not tired. But there you go. Dad's a bit more understanding, so I'm lucky to have that I guess - it's not easy but just take what the parents say and don't let their words get to you. Just do what you know best, it's not their place to try and control you anymore as you're nearly an adult. Many people will be able to relate to what you're saying about feeling like an outcast - EVERYONE does or has even if it's just a bit. Half of who just don't want to admit it. You are clearly an intelligent person and as you say, you're moving on soon. I can understand what you say about wanting someone to talk to though. You can get some counselling through and in school. For example, my counsellor sees me Friday, in the school interview room, between about 10:10 and 11:20, if I hadn't told my parents I am seeing the counsellor - there's no way they could know. You can usually get relevant information regarding this via the school/college nurse, who will put your name on the waiting list or give you the phone number to arrange appointments yourself. It might just be something worth considering :) just to get some things off your chest and by the time you finish your exams you'll really be ready to take that first step into your new life, which I am sure will be fantastic for you.

    TC & Kindest Regards,

    Fay :) xxxx

  • Not sure if it should be 'Half of whom' or not lol - ah well it's only the internet. :)

  • Thank you Fay, I hope you do well in your exams! I'm going to look into a school counsellor soon, especially during this last stretch to my exams. Thanks for this advice and sharing your story, it makes me feel better, looking forward to moving on. :)

    Thanks again :)

  • Thanks so much. :) Just trying to be as positive I as I can really, though I'm worrying about them. There's this university that I want to go to sooo badly that it almost hurts, I just can't imagine going anywhere else, it looks like home (or what could be my home for the next 3 years or), but I need to get really high grades in order to get accepted. It's going to be a bit of a stretch...

    You're most welcome and I'm glad I've made you feel better, it's good to hear (well read but you know what I mean) you sounding more positive :) I wish you the best of luck with counselling, the exams, and the future. :)

    TC :) xxxx

  • Hi Lyreco, you were fantastic and honest in your posting, its a very pressurised time, and I have to say being intelligent can seem to be a burden at times. I was bright and got a scholarship to Grammar school, did a Degree and so on, I am good at some things and hopeless at other things. I have always felt alone in that I felt I was not popular, I was shy in a group situation and liked one to one. I realise now that I didn't really have a lot in common with the people who I was not popular with. My belaboured point is hang in there, you sound like a great guy, and kids of this age can be so cruel, its the mob mentality. You must confide in someone, be it Samaritans, someone maybe in your church or a relation who is kind. You will look back on this time when your older, and all this will make you a sensitive guy who women will like. Hair colour , who the hell cares, don't mind any of them.

    Try and join some club that caters for your particular interest be it, Chess, Yoga, Music, whatever, stay strong, and keep coming back here for support. People here are great and totally non judgemental.

    Big hug to you


  • No problem :) what kind of degree you going for? Good luck though, home stretch now! and thank you :) xx

  • Thank you Hannah, that means a lot, I'm glad someone understands :) and I hope to start joining a few other groups soon :) Thank you so much for your kind comments, they've really helped :)

  • Hi There,

    I was the quiet one at school, quiet intelligent but nothing compaired to you by the sounds of things.

    The popular kids were scary and i wasnt picked on but there was a few incidents over the years.

    Put it this way i was quiet, pretty chubby, braces and just ugly. so the opposite of the popular people.

    However since then i am studying my masters degree and they are all doing nothing with their lives!!! they dont have good jobs, they all had kids really early and a lad from my school told me recently that now im the prettiest girl out of everyone in our year! nobody ever recognises me i changed so much, all the popular boys seem to want to know now and believe me, theres nothing attractive about them....they left all that behind at school.

    So it makes me so happy to know i have all of this now, i have control of my life and hopefully a good career in front of me.

    It was worth what ever i went through in school to have the rest of my life to look forward too. And im sure you will come out the other side of this when you go to uni!

    Keep posting on here its been a wonderful support to me.

    Best wishes :) x

  • Thank you! That sounds fantastic, I'm glad things turned around! I'm really not that intelligent at all, but thank you for the kind words. It's just depressing because I feel as though I'm mature for my age, but people my age aren't and 17 is too young to fit in with older people, even though I get along with older people more than people my own age.

    Thank you, I'm really hoping it all pays off :)

  • Theres nothing wrong with a mature lad, its such a turn off when lads are silly and immature. Dont get me wrong i love a bit of a prank and being silly. But immature lads dont no how to treat a woman right and are usually (in my experience) nasty.

    They are rare and believe me, am still looking for one!! lol

    I think i was a bit like you, old before my time, my best friend when i was 17 was double my age! i met her working with horses.

    Over the last few years ive kind of rebelled a bit and started doing things i props normally would of done when i was your age (im now 25).

    And i did law at A level and i know how hard it is so there :)

    One day you will look back and laugh at all those people :) just focus on that!


  • aha, without being too cocky I think a lot of people at my age generally are quite immature and aren't thinking about the future, which is understandable in a way. Thank you, hopefully I'll meet someone at uni :)

    Yes it is tough, there's a lot to learn, I have to learn 350+ cases next year! thank you, I know, just trying to stick through it :) x

  • Really feel for you.

    Hope that you do manage to arrange for a school counsellor.

    I've experienced a couple of episodes of bullying in my life but never the group bullying you are talking about. I was also lucky to have supportive family and friends to help me through it.

    You might find it useful, or at least interesting to look at a book called 'The Lucifer Effect: How Good People Turn Evil' by an American psychologist called Philip Zimbardo. He specialises in group psychology and was ran a very famous experiment called 'The Stanford Prison Experiment' - in the 1960s. It took young men who had been well screened to ensure that they didn't have any psycopathic tendencies and put them, at random, either in the role of prisoners or guards. Within a few days the situation had deterioriated into such levels of violence and brutality that it had to be stopped. Much of the book is about this and his own part in it - he only stopped the experiment when he showed what was going on to his girlfriend - another psychologist - and started to see it through her eyes and realise just what had happened. He has since worked a lot with institutions to help make individuals strong enough to resist the group pressures that create situations of brutality and violence and things like the bullying you seem to be experiencing. May be there is a lot more that the teachers should be doing to change some underlying dynamics - just a suggestion.

    As I say it is very accademic but it is definitely readable. There is also a lot of follow up stuff on line with suggestions on things that can be done to stop the institutional stuff - or at least there was around 2007 when the book was published.

    Whatever you do don't give up.

    It's perfectly natural to want someone to share things with and I'm sure it will happen. I didn't really have my first boyfriend until I was in my late 20s - it was good for a few years and then went South after about 10. I was in my late 40s - so took a few years - before I started my second relationship. It isn't an easy thing and sometime it is hard. Interestingly I think it was about the points when I'd stopped really trying that it turned up in front of me.

    Thinking of you

  • I love of my all time fav studies and areas of research.

    Its amazing what happened within that study.

    I didnt no there was a book though, thank you for sharing this! I will be buying this when i have finished my current studies!! :)

  • Hi, I'm also 17, not studying A-Levels though, I really understand where you're coming from in the sense that you feel like you're an outsider. Not many people our age understand mental health issues and most of the time they joke about it. when I was at school I always felt alone and I was bullied for my hair, my jacket, what I ate etc. really stupid things which really got to me. Our generation is so messed up but don't feel like you're on your own. Hugs xx

  • I'm truly overwhelmed by your kind words. Thank you so much, they really have helped. I'll buy that book off amazon, it sounds really interesting actually, I haven't heard of it before :) Becca I know what you mean, if I told anyone about my depression they'd just laugh at me other than a councillor I suppose. Thank you, that means a lot :) xx

  • My husband was bullied for years for having red hair and being different. He moved away from the small village he grew up in for uni and never moved back there. You should celebrate being different because if we were all the same life would be boring x

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