Should you change schools if you’re not making friends in yours?

Hachiko asks: I want to change my school. Not because of it being an all-girls school, but because I can’t make any good friends here. Studying quality is good but I want to go to this other school (combined), because I have many other friends there. My mom thinks I shouldn’t go and my dad says I can go if I want. What should I do? I read in combined schools earlier, and I also read in this school when I was small, but because of my dad being in the army I had to change schools. I’m going through depression because of my school (I think), and my parents don’t actually care (they say they got problems of their own). I know they love me, but feeling alone is sad. And the studying pressure is also a bit more in the school which makes me go through mental depression as I get no time for myself 🙁 no time for hangouts and the studying pressure in that school is less. And also let me say that I don’t know why, but combined schools are also a lot of PRESSURE because of the boys if you know what I mean!

Hi Hachiko –

When Handsome first took me to a dog park, I was six months old, and as playful and hyper as any puppy ever, and was overjoyed to run up to all the dogs there and make friends… and not one wanted to play with me.

Why?  Well, partly because some of them had special friends they wanted to play with, and didn’t need a new pal.  Also because some of them simply didn’t like to play with anyone, or were older and found puppies annoying!  But also, in some cases, they saw that I didn’t really know how to play the way they liked, and wanted me to stay back and observe them, and learn their rituals and rules.

Now today, I understand all that.  But on the day itself, I was devastated.  My veterinarian had told Handsome to keep me out of parks like that till I was this old, for disease prevention, and I had just hated not being able to play with lots of dogs.  So my hopes for this day were gigantic, and being spurned by the other pooches made me feel worthless and unloved.  I mean, sure, Handsome loved me, but I wasn’t acceptable to my own kind?  Just heartbreaking.  (So I really relate to your being loved by your parents but feeling sad and lonely nonetheless – especially as school days are a lot longer than the times I’d spend in the park)

But Handsome kept bringing me back there.  And two things happened.  One is that, over time, I learned which dogs liked to play, which didn’t, and how to figure out the way to win some of them over.  But more importantly, I made a best friend, who was another misfit no one would play with.  Kuma was a victim of abuse, and wouldn’t even let anyone but his owner pet him.  But we understood each other at once, and would play for hours, not caring about the other dogs.

So my advice to you?  I’d say to give the school you’re at a chance, in hopes you a) learn better how to deal with the other girls, and which are worth befriending; and b) find a Kuma of your own, who’ll make the school a joy for you.

But if that doesn’t happen over time, then sure, ask your parents to put you in another school.  You’ll have to start over all over again, like me in a new dog park, but you might have a better group to choose from.

Now if you want some help in making friends there… just go back to the AskShirelle site and type in “friends” in the search box, and you’ll see a lot of suggestions about that.  And if you want some help dealing with the pressure of being around boys, there are some pieces about that too!

In the meantime, thanks for reaching out to me.  I’m thrilled that we’re friends, and that that’ll be true no matter what school you attend!


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