Past high school issues (long)

The first year of high school started out great. I still hung out with all of my best friends from middle school. Then everyone started to meet new people, find new groups of friends, and I found it hard to find more good friends. I met new people but never got close to anyone.

My second year in high school I got in touch with an old friend from childhood. We were best friends when we were 3 years old until we were 6.

In high school, after I lost all of my old “best friends”, she became my only friend. We hung out every week and I was introduced to her friends. She always asked me about my friends since we went to different public schools.

Then one night I took my friend to a football game and sat with two of my old “best friends” who were with their new group of dancer friends. I tried to talk to them, but they seemed to ignore me and my other friend I brought as a guest kept asking me “What’s wrong, what’s wrong? Why aren’t they talking to you?” I was surprised nonetheless, they glanced over at us, waved and gave a weird look, and continued to talk among themselves. My whole life I’ve been nice, caring. I never did anything to harm them and I never understood why they treated me poorly.

I got to be depressed and embarrassed that I stopped hanging out with my only friend. She saw how my old friends treated me and felt bad for me. I just wanted to be alone and kept to myself. So I stopped talking to my only friend.

My last year of high school I had no friends. If I tried to sit with my old friends, it felt socially awkward and I felt unwelcome. I tried to spend most of my time in the bathroom, walking around the hallway, or tried to get a pass for the library (required teacher’s approval). I didn’t do as great as I could have in my academics. It was the worst year of my life.

Looking back of course my life wasn’t that bad then. People are suffering from cancer, poverty, illness, every second in the world. But I still feel bad about high school and I’m in my early twenties. If I think about it (which is not very often. maybe once every 6 months) I can’t help but cry. It was a very difficult time in my life.

Since high school all of my old “best friends” have apologized (4 years after we graduated) and I see them once a year. But it’s still awkward and our friendship will never be the same of course. They always say “Let’s go out for drinks. Let’s work out” but then never hear from them. Sometimes I contact them to hang out, but they say they are too busy.

I just apologized to the girl who was my only loyal friend who cared about me. Yes, it was half a decade ago but I still feel bad about it. I feel like I missed out on a life long friendship.

Now I have a great relationship with God, my fiance, brothers, and acquaintances but some day I hope to have close friendships again.

Sorry to hear you had a tough time at high school.

I would like to assure you that your struggles are not at all uncommon and many people have similar challenges (perhaps not to the same degree). Thinking back to some of my high school friends, I wonder why I was friends with many of them. I have one good friend I have staying in touch with, and maybe a couple of others I speak with occasionally. But I’ve made many new friends since. Of course, my wife and children are the focus of my life, but it is also not too hard to build new circles of friends after school. Put it all behind you and enthusiastically embrace the life ahead of you. Best wishes.

Yes, I can also assure you that you’re not alone in your experience. I’ve dealt with these same things as have, I’m sure, many others…I’m so glad to hear that you’re doing well now though! Thank God :slight_smile:

Those things from my junior high and high school days still haunt me a bit, forty years later. I think they haunt, affect, or subliminally affect people throughout their lives, especially when they ignore the problems of the past.

If the teens are not our formative years, then it all means nothing. There are no mistakes, no right and no wrong, etc…BUT THE TRUTH IS THAT THEY ARE OUR FORMATIVE YEARS, and our interactions during those years can have a powerful affect on our adult years. If we did wrong, we can go to confession and be absolved of our sins but we can still carry things in our hearts and minds that affect us in the present.

Sometimes someone did wrong to us and we can carry that scar, or breach of trust into our adult years. I wish I had had someone to really talk to about things in junior high and high school. And girls at that age can be so cruel without even realizing it. I recently went to my 40 year reunion with an old friend and remembered how much I wanted her friendship in high school but didn’t feel she cared. At the reunion she reminded me that her dad had died and her mother was preparing to remarry within three months of her father’s funeral. She said that she went crazy for a few years. Looking back, I realize that she was a kid and could not be the total friend I was looking for at that time…but she is now. And I don’t need her as intensely now as I thought I needed her back then. I have more friends, more peace, more inner security, and more of a life.

But I can understand what you are going through and hope you can sift through the dregs, find the truth, the errors, see the effects of it all and pull your life together now because you are older and wiser and not a hormonal teen caught in an emotional web. You will find a good friend or two, and will meet many more people. It sounds like you have a depth of feeling and need to find people who reflect that. And even if you were trapped by shame or embarrassed and let that friendship go, you are still deserving of a good friendship now.

My auntie made friends into her 80’s and she always said that it was important to make friends with all ages. I find that her advice has helped me make new friends through the years.

My mother said that she could count her close friends on one hand and one of those friends was my dad. My mom had many “friends” so I was shocked at first until I have realized that the true, big ‘F’- FRIENDS are rare.

You are looking at your past squarely, and will probably make many friends in the future. I strongly advise you to keep your heart open, and look for friends in unusual settings. Be open to surprises. I found two close friends, over 25 years ago whom I thought I disliked at the first meeting. The great thing about being a grown-up is that you become more clear on values and begin to see beyond and beneath the wrinkly surface.

Your experiences are not all that unusual.

I had only one very close friend in HS, but never saw him after the final year.

We have the misconception that HS is the highlight of our life, fuelled by all the movies and such that center on that chunk of time. But that’s not true.

If HS was five years ago for you, you still have a chunk of youth left and plenty of time to catch up on new friendships.


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