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Topic: New school, incredibly unmotivated

3 posts, 0 answered
  1. snardavellus42
    snardavellus42 avatar
    1 posts
    6 March 2019

    Hello,
    Recently, after moving to a new school, I have felt depressed and lonely.
    Over the past two years, I have had depression on an on/off basis. It has gotten quite bad at times. In primary school, I was horribly alone and had no friends at all, for six years. Now that I’ve moved schools again, I feel afraid that I’ll have no friends and no support network.
    I moved from an IB school to a VCE one, so I find tests and lectures very frightening and intimidating and I can’t cope with the levels of homework. I don’t know how to stop procrastinating, and I can’t find motivation to because I feel that I’ll fail in everything I do anyways. I am never satisfied with what I do and I only ever see faults.
    No one really understands me as they think I’m ‘smart’ (I got a scholarship to my new school) but I’m really not; I’m just consistently lucky. I don’t know how to change my attitude and improve my self esteem or how to find motivation.
    I’m consistently tired and I have headaches often. I’m really slow and I feel like I’m on the brink of panic attacks a lot.

    To top it all off, every year in Term 3 I have a really bad mental breakdown. If I’m like this now, I fear that that breakdown will make m insane... it also occurs around the same time as exams (which I’ve never written before).

    Advice?

    Thanks for reading,
    snard

  2. Summer Rose
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    32 posts
    7 March 2019 in reply to snardavellus42

    Hi Snard

    Welcome to bb and thank you for sharing story. There is a lot to unpack.

    It feels to me that you are overwhelmed by the pressure at school from VCE and feeling depressed and stuck. That despite your ability it's hard to get moving, right?

    VCE is tough. There is a lot of pressure for schools to turn out high achieving students and I believe this is what drives the repetitive endless homework and practice tests and exams. This is very different to IB (my daughter did VCE, my son did IB) and it puts enormous pressure on students. As someone on a scholarship, I can imagine the pressure and expectations of school are enormous.

    I think this is going to be very challenging for you to manage, whilst dealing with depression. The good news is that it is possible to complete VCE your way.

    Schools and the VCE program have flexibility. It is possible to reduce the pressure by completing less subjects. It is also possible to get support with exams--extra time, a separate room, etc.

    You need to put this type of support in place before the anticipated "breakdown". Start by talking with your head of house or year level coordinator. It would probably be a good idea to involve mum or dad.

    My daughter has a mental health condition (anxiety and OCD). She accessed all of these supports. She survived with her health in tact and achieved an ATAR in the top 25 per cent of our state. She got her course at uni by choosing a program to meet her individual needs (rest assured all the other kids are doing the same thing).

    This approach also gave her time to enjoy sport and the drama club, where she formed solid friendships. You also need to do something you enjoy to balance out your life. This might also help you to develop a support network.

    Critically this approach also gave her time to see her psychologist and look after her mental health. You haven't mentioned if you are receiving professional help for your depression but this is vital. If you haven't already done so, please see your GP for a really good talk.

    It's not worth suffering and risking crashing, when you can complete VCE your way. You are not a walking talking billboard for your school and academic excellence, you are Snard and you matter.

    Happy to talk it through as long as it helps.

    Kind thoughts to you

    1 person found this helpful
  3. Psychologistry
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    Psychologistry avatar
    8 posts
    10 March 2019 in reply to snardavellus42

    I know. It can be very intimidating and frightening.

    But you mustn't let stress take over you. It's not going to help.

    You need to understand how much pressure your school has, to be able to turn out amazing students. VCE schools have very high expectations of students, especially the one on scholarships. I hope your parents understand this, because if, in any case, your scholarship gets withdrawn, they aren't going to be fuming with anger. As Summer Rose coined, pressure is why they give out an overwhelming amount of homework, practice tests...etc..

    All you need to do is, get some support. Start with your parents. Explain the situation to them, and tell them how your feeling. Make some visits to a psychologist, who may be able to talk you through this.

    Then, try and talk with the school. Just because you're on a scholarship, doesn't mean you will not be allowed support. After all, the school expects you to graduate as an exceptional student, not a depressed one.

    It really is possible. Try discussing the issue with a teacher, coordinator, manager or head of house. They will hardly ever say no to supporting you. They may be able to reduce the amount of homework assigned to you, give you a separate room in an examination...etc...

    Keep in mind that schools are literally RANKED. They want to achieve the highest position possible.

    Back to the subject. Now that you have some sort of help, try find some time to do extracurricular activities, such as play sport, study music, go to cooking classes, and so on. Extracurricular activities can help you find a balance in your life.

    But none of this is an excuse to not be happy. Make some friends, and hang out with them. Friends can be a vital part to getting out of that "generally sad" zone. Just have the courage to do introduce yourself. Then, find a hobby that you like. Again, explain the situation to your parents, if they disallow you from doing such a hobby. Also be optimistic at all times.

    Happiness and optimism will keep you "immune" to all your troubles. What I mean is that you'll make a quick mental recovery and it won't hurt as much as it would when you are depressed and lonely. A good outlook and mood will also help you balance out your life and not let troubles take over.

    Hope this helped,

    Pyschologistry...

    1 person found this helpful