This is just a rant in order to let off some steam and some things may not correlate in topic.
Guys, I don't know why but as graduation has been treading closer, my fears and worries have grown stronger. I've taken 2 AP tests that were $89 each which I'm sure I failed due to lack of motivation and preparation and I have my history one on the Wednesday coming up. Today, my mom asked me if I was happy or if I felt weird at school and I lied right in her face about me being miserable. I'm mostly alone when it comes to being an atheist and queer and there seems like there's no place to go. I also regret that I haven't been able to establish any lasting relationships but at the same time I don't really click with anyone at school. My parents make it worse by reminding me of all of the things I could've done in high school and I'm jumping blindly into college not really knowing what to expect out of it. I also worry if I'll ever get a boyfriend as well as being able to be comfortable in public and especially around family. There are also fears and insecurities concerning m current appearance (I'm not happy because I don't look the way I feel I should due to my own preferences). I also feel insecure when I'm around people who are gay because I have a feeling that other people will give me weird looks for not being bothered while around them. It's all so conflicting and it's driving me crazy! I'm depressed, miserable, and have been having thoughts of hurting myself.
Any advice is appreciated even though, I know that I will not follow that advice because I'm too afraid to. I really feel like I'm the sappy one in the Think Atheist groups because I always write about negative things and I'm sorry for that.
I don't care if anyone replies or not but I just had to put this out there even though it's still much appreciated if you do.
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You sound perfectly normal. Don't settle for anything less than happiness. You only have this one life, don't let being an ape prevent you from enjoying it. And know that straight people feel the EXACT same way at times when they are your age.
You're so lucky to be starting university soon. So many fresh opportunities. So many classes that will blow your mind. People you never thought you'd hang out with. People you never thought you'd sleep with. Falling behind. Catching up. Walking around campus wearing nothing but a kilt for a week. You're so lucky Ari. Really lucky.
p.s. it gets better. Really. It does.
Ari you sound like my daughter when she was 17 and still in high school. Overwhelmed is a great word.
She's in college now and came out about six months ago. She said she wanted to tell us sooner but was scared of disappointing us. Speaking for myself I don't care about any of that. As a parent all I want is her happiness. I'm actually sad that she put herself through all the anguish for so long and did not tell us sooner. It's okay to be happy. Like an old Navy buddy once told me "This thing called life, it's not a dress rehearsal"... You're on... Don't mess up your lines.. If you do, you can do it over...
Well, you've done the right thing by talking to people, even if it's us.
You have to remember that in 10 years' time, things will inevitably have moved on somewhat. It's impossible to fester like this for the next 10 years. Something's got to give. I recommend that you speak to your mother. She sounds like a normal mum and a normal mum wants the best for her boy. After that, you've got a lifetime's journey ahead of you. Yes, you're different from the run of the mill person, but you live in the USA, not Saudi Arabia. You're not going to be arrested and tortured. Perhaps you can eventually move to a liberal "vibrant" city where you can be yourself among other people just like you, and be happy. In the meantime, hold tight and chill out. If you were to "hurt yourself" - commit suicide - then frankly that would be the act of a pussy, when you stand to gain so much if you follow the alternative and stay alive. As for cutting yourself or something like that - it leaves scars which don't look very nice. Get a rubber band and twang it on your arm, and that works just as well.
Whatever happens, you need to remember your courage. No matter how totally fucked you are, you can always have courage. You owe it to the people around you to have courage. If something's too hard, it's too hard, but that's not the same as not having courage.
Sorry to sound harsh, I'm not really a sergeant-major. It's a tough situation for you.
Also, you're very young, and very young people usually don't know much (no offense). In the future you'll have more wisdom and more effective coping strategies. That's why things get easier for everyone as they get older.
You appear to need three things: perspective, self confidence, and challenge.
What you are going through is no different than anyone else is going through. You are not a special snowflake which face obstacles unknown to anyone. This is the perspective, and it leads into the lack of self confidence. Pretty much everyone else manage to get through this shit, then why shouldn't you? Why are you allowing yourself to be weaker than everybody else? Stop wasting time and effort in putting yourself down, it's enough with everybody else doing it.
Lastly, try a real challenge. Like, be a garment worker in Bangladesh for a year. If not that, at least go drop yourself in the wilderness without anything but your ingenuity for a couple of weeks. A real challenge always ends up providing perspective on your other problems, and overcoming them is a boost to self esteem.
Not to worry guys, I'm not going to hurt or kill myself but just was expressing negative emotions that I couldn't hold in any longer. I appreciate all of your advice and I'm once again sorry for any worry I may have caused you. :(
Instead of advice, I can offer you this instead.
Everyone here, to one degree or another, has felt the same way at some time in our lives. We discover we are different (as atheists, or in other ways) and as a result feel isolated, just as you do. Virtually everyone, especially in our younger years, has looked at the unknown future and felt uncertainty or apprehension.
We think we're not prepared enough. We're not good enough. We fear our failures. We fear the judgment of others. We are afraid that nobody will understand us. That nobody will love us. We struggle in our relationships with family and friends. We look at the past and feel regret for things we did or did not do.
This is normal. This is part of the human condition. This is exactly as it should be. Sometimes we figure things out. Sometimes we screw them up. But your life is like anything else. The more living you do, the better you get at it.
And it does get better, Ari. We figure out ways to handle it better, just never as quickly or easily as we'd like. Usually it's enough to make the best choices we can and know that few troubles outlast several years worth of perspective.
End of inspirational pep talk. Play uplifting rock video:
Thanks for the message which is especially true when you said...
"We think we're not prepared enough. We're not good enough. We fear our failures. We fear the judgment of others. We are afraid that nobody will understand us. That nobody will love us. We struggle in our relationships with family and friends. We look at the past and feel regret for things we did or did not do."
I also appreciate you spending the extra effort in finding a video to cheer me up and it did a little, thanks. I've been struggling with feeling different ever since elementary school as well as being dishonest about myself to my family and even to my own self. That's probably why I don't know my own interests because I refused to accept my own quirks so I became just a bleak person with a nice personality. It all seems to be getting harder and harder. Albeit, hopefully after high school I'll get enough courage to be myself and make friends who genuinely care about me. Also, before I saw your comment I watched to 2 newest episodes of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and that really helped cheer me up. I would feel embarrassed if anyone found out but I believe it's a sign of 1 of the many lost pieces that consist of my interests and values. I'll try to keep hope that things will get better.
Haha! I love this picture. ^.^ Thanks for that, Simon.^.^