New school hates my old school!

I’m excited to be moving schools for a sophomore year but I’m worried I’ll get picked on because of my “artsy” old school. Should I just lie about it?

Don’t worry, says our elder. Your positive attitude will see you through.

Dear EWC

So I’m a freshman in high school and I’m going to be a sophomore next year. I’m very excited, however, my parents have made the decision of sending me to another school. When they first told me I wasn’t too bummed out since I like the idea of an adventure and meeting new people. Then they told me I’d be going to a local school. Everyone I’ve talked to at my current school has said it’s really bad and that a lot of the people are rude and not too great. Then I told them I’m gonna have to go there next year, and they say that if I let anyone know where I went before that I’ll get bullied and made fun of because we have a reputation for having a lot of artsy people here.

I’m actually not completely sure of the exact reason for the stigma, but from what I know, most other schools call us names because there’s a good number of homosexual people here. I doubt though that the stigma is actually about people in my new school being homophobic. I’ve personally been taking all of this with a grain of salt, although I can’t deny that I am a little shaken with everyone’s propaganda about the school. I have two friends that went to my new school for a short while and both of them came back with a negative opinion of the school. The first friend said she got bullied for having gone to our school before hand, and the second friend just flat out said it sucked to go there and came back. The first friend, though, said she had an ex-friend who went to my new school who had it in for her, so it could’ve been that she became a target because this ex-friend didn’t like her.

Still, I’m pretty worried. Because of all these opinions of the school, it’s caused me to begin thinking about what I’ll actually say if someone asks which school I went to last year. I considered dodging the question or politely declining to answer but it may come off weird. I’m not even sure if I actually have to dodge the question. I just wish that there was a way to maybe put off telling anybody so that I can get a gist of what the people are like or which people are friendly enough to not make fun of me. What should I do?

June-Bug replies

I wouldn’t worry about the rumors. Walk into your new school with your head held high. Tell them the truth about your former school. If they have a problem with your former school, it’s likely out of ignorance based on rumors they have heard. It’s natural for people to think their school is the best. A competition, or rivalry, between schools is healthy. Disliking people just because they go to or came from a certain school is not. People are people wherever they live or go to school. If your new classmates don’t want to get to know you as an individual, just because of where you attended school, that’s their problem. I know it’s easy to say and difficult to do, but I truly believe that if you believe in yourself, anything negative that others might say to you will just roll right off. This is your opportunity to dispel the rumors about your former school by telling them the positive things about it. Studying the arts can be broadening and fulfilling if you ask me.

I know what it’s like to move to a new high school. I did it myself in junior year when my family moved to another state. I know how hard it can be to fit in at the new school because I did a lousy job of it. I wish I could tell my former self to relax and be myself, but I had very low self-esteem and was sorely lacking in confidence. Confidence came much later in life for me. As a result of my own issues, high school was a miserable situation. I now see, that if I had put myself out there and been more friendly, it would have been a much better experience for me. Fortunately, I have an opportunity now to pass along some wisdom to you. Don’t make the mistakes that I made. Be yourself. Be friendly and approachable. Don’t worry about what people might say. Proudly acknowledge who you are and where you come from. Don’t fear what anyone may say. You know who you are.

I am so proud of you for embracing this experience as an exciting adventure and opportunity to meet new people. Your positive attitude will be the key to your success. Good luck!

Letter #: 441345
Category: School

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