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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
ItDoesn'tMatter Offline
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A Never Ending Trap - November 23rd 2013, 04:36 PM

Hello,

I'm not really sure how I'm supposed to post, since I'm new. I was recommend to join thanks to a close friend of mine. I'm not usually comfortable with letting my emotions out like this, but I'm going to give this a chance.

Well, my problem started when I hit 11th grade. I was plagued with countless anxiety attacks, chest pain, and more. I was under a lot of stress, and there was no one who could help me. I felt alone, I felt like I was going to die every day. I eventually managed, and had my problems checked out. They just told me it was anxiety and basically told me to get over it.

However, I didn't get over it. It continued and still continues to this day. Later, I found out it was better to not fight against it, but to compromise with the feelings. Soon they began to get better. They are still here, but they don't feel threatening like before.

After that life was okay. I was pretty happy, and since I'm an optimist I'm always happy about things regardless. However, once I graduated from high school things began to change. I started college in the summer, and not one of the ones I "really" wanted to go to. I was literally talked into it by an advisor at the school.

So they showed me around and everything felt nice, but the closer it came to the start date nothing felt right. Everyone around me was happy and excited, but I wasn't. It felt wrong, it didn't feel right.

I went through a special program to help me get accommodated to the school. I also stayed in a dorm and had a roommate. The college was close to home so I would go home on the weekends.

However, as time went on people began to question my interests. I'm not interested in things such as sports and such, but I like video games, Japanese culture, a lot of things like that. My goal in life has been to go to Japan, but the ones there didn't take kindly to that. They made rude remarks about my likes, and made me feel awkward for being who I was.

After surviving high school I thought college was supposed to be some kind of sanctuary. I was told of how great college would be, and how much I would enjoy it. People would explain the amount of education and how much I'd learn. I expected that when I started, but none of it was true, at least not for me.

I didn't enjoy college. The work in the summer was easy, but in the fall it became crazy hard. Even when putting forth 100% it was not enough. Before college I was filled with so much passion, energy, and I was doing so much. (For example, I would read a lot, learn so many new things, writing novels, self-teach, put time in to help others, exercising, etc) When I started all of that passion was gone. I thought it was supposed to help me reach my goals, but it's only confused me more. It's turned me into a person I don't like, someone I didn't want to be. I feel like a husk of my old self, and there's no way for me to go back.

How am I supposed to enjoy this? I participate in clubs and activities, but they don't do it for me. If I focus too much on them my grades slip. If I want my grades to stay up, I'm not able to do anything I enjoy. I'm forced to memorize things just to perform well on tests, and I'm not learning anything. The thing that bothers me the most, is that people say it only gets harder from here on out. What in the world am I supposed to do then!?

I became depressed shortly after starting. I contemplated dropping out due to my dislike of the whole system. However, I can't do that either....how else am I supposed to get a job? I'm not concentrated on making a lot of money, or having a secure job. I just want to do something with what I enjoy! I want to follow my dreams! It's just a endless trap that's set for me. I can't leave, but continuing on is ruining my life. There's nothing for me to do...
   
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Re: A Never Ending Trap - November 23rd 2013, 06:19 PM

Hello, and welcome to TeenHelp! I'm so glad you decided to reach out to us. =)

For many people, the "college years" are about transition into adulthood and self-reflection/discovery. Classes are rarely "fun" and there can still be "drama" with roommates/peers. What makes college so enjoyable is that exploration of who you are, and who you want to become. It sounds like you have some goals, but they may be a bit vague, and you may not know how to achieve those goals. Is college necessary at this point in time? It was for me, because you can't become a mental health professional without an advanced degree; however, upon further reflection, you may discover a college degree is not needed for what you want to do.

Think about your different career options, and more importantly, talk to people who are in the industries that interest you. If you want to travel to Japan, then you can find someone who also travels to Japan on a frequent basis. Request a moment of their time so you can "pick their brain" - invite them to join you for coffee/lunch so it's worth their time. That's how I was able to determine that I wanted to be a therapist vs. a psychologist, and that I could settle for a Master's degree vs. a Doctorate degree.

It's okay to take time off from college while you figure all of this out. In fact, it may be the best decision, depending on your circumstances. So many people waste valuable time and money by taking classes that don't contribute to their final choice in degree. Plenty of people take 1-2 semesters off in order to save money through a part-time job. In the meantime, they continue to explore their career goals and seek out people who can help them make more concrete decisions about their future.





   
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Re: A Never Ending Trap - November 24th 2013, 07:36 AM

Sorry for the extremely late response.

I'd like to thank you for your help, you have really opened up my eyes. I felt like I had no control over my life, but I see that I do. I don't have to abide to various standards set for me. I am able to make my own path. I agree that it's fun to explore who I am and what I want to become, but as of now I'm better doing that outside of college.

Thanks again so much!
   
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Re: A Never Ending Trap - November 24th 2013, 06:23 PM

I know what you mean when you say that the college just doesn't fit you. I ended up at a school that I thought I would like that had one of the top programs in my major and went running home the day before classes started because it just didn't feel right. I went to community college instead and then transferred to a school that was much better. Now I'm earning my masters at a school and a program that I LOVE. If college is something you want to continue with (and if not that's okay too), look into transferring to another school that you might like better.

At the same time, college isn't for everyone and if it's not for you, or its not for you right now, that's okay. As Robin said, take some time to figure out who you are and what you want and talk to people who do what you want to do. It's not as intimidating as it sounds, people LOVE to talk about what they do and would be happy to help you out. If you want to go to Japan and explore the culture and country, figure out how to make that happen. If you decide to stay in school, look into study abroad programs that go to Japan, if not, figure out what you would need to go on your own.

Not everyone grows up after high school, so there can still be "drama", it's okay to be yourself, or to figure out who that is. If other people want to waste their time and energy judging you, that's their problem.


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Re: A Never Ending Trap - November 25th 2013, 03:29 AM

Really? It's really relieving to know I'm not the only one going through these problems.

"I ended up at a school that I thought I would like that had one of the top programs in my major and went running home the day before classes started because it just didn't feel right."

This part right here really speaks to me, as I am in the same. The top program from my major, and no matter what people just warn us how hard the program is. Not only that, they seem to take joy from seeing people struggle and having a hard time, and that's something I just don't understand.

Ever since I set foot at this school it felt wrong. It wasn't exciting, or the good kind of stress...it was a "Oh no, I've made a huge mistake, kind of stress."

Again, thank you so much for your help!
   
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Re: A Never Ending Trap - November 25th 2013, 05:06 AM

If it's the case that the school isn't a good fit, I would consider transferring before giving up. Your degree will be the same no matter what school you get it from, even if you're told differently by the school or by other people. The important thing is that you feel comfortable and like you belong.

As a heads up, regardless of how much you want your chosen career or how much you love your major, there will be classes you HATE. They do tend to be easier in the summer, but sometimes it just depends what you take and of course some majors are harder than others to begin with. If you hate your major in general, it might be worth looking into studying something else. Going part-time should be an option too, unless you're in a major where you can't do that because you won't graduate for 20 years unless you go full time.

It's likely too late to consider transferring for next semester, but if it's something that sounds like a good idea, consider looking into it over break.

As for getting your passion for learning back, read and study something you like over your breaks. In a few weeks I'm going to get a library book that was suggested by my professor and another one that I'll finally have time to read.


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